OWINGS MILLS, Md. — Despite optimism that the bye week would return a fully-healthy roster, the Ravens know they will already be without four players for Sunday’s game against Houston.
Wide receiver Lee Evans, safety Tom Zbikowski, and cornerbacks Chris Carr and Jimmy Smith were ruled out in Friday’s injury report.
Evans will now miss his third straight game as he continues to deal with a left ankle injury. Optimism existed when the veteran wideout return to the practice field earlier in the week, but Evans did not practice on Thursday and Friday.
“He’s going to need some practice,” Harbaugh said. “It’s been very disappointing. No one’s been more surprised than us. But, [we’ll] just wait and see if the doctors can figure it out. He has to keep working on it.”
Zbikowski is still dealing with symptoms stemming from a concussion he suffered against the Jets on Oct. 2 and did not practice on Thursday or Friday after doing some individual work on Wednesday. Carr and Smith were expected to miss Sunday’s game as neither partook in practice all week.
Starting left guard Ben Grubbs is listed as questionable for Sunday and has not played since the regular-season opener against Pittsburgh. Despite being listed as a limited participant in practice on Thursday and Friday, Grubbs did not appear to be taking part in much activity during the portions of practice viewed by the media. This stems from an apparent setback suffered during the wee, according to Harbaugh.
“He got stepped on [Thursday], so we’ll just have to see. It was a little bruised today, so we decided not to take a chance today. We’ll have to see on Sunday, before the game, how he’s moving.”
If Grubbs cannot go, veteran Andre Gurode would be making his third straight start at left guard.
The Ravens will likely see the returns of safety Haruki Nakamura and return specialist David Reed, who are both listed as probable. Nakamura missed the Jets game with a sprained PCL while Reed has not played since suffering a shoulder injury in the loss to Tennessee on Sept. 18.
As expected, Texans receiver Andre Johnson will not play on Sunday and fullback James Casey is listed as doubtful.
Houston quarterback Matt Schaub, who was limited in practice all week with a tender throwing shoulder, is listed as probable.
OUT – WR Lee Evans (ankle), CB Jimmy Smith (ankle), CB Chris Carr (thigh), S Tom Zbikowski
QUESTIONABLE – G Ben Grubbs (toe)
PROBABLE – S Haruki Nakamura (knee), LB Dannell Ellerbe (thigh), WR David Reed (shoulder), RB Anthony Allen
OUT – WR Andre Johnson (hamstring)
DOUBTFUL – FB James Casey (chest)
PROBABLE – CB Jason Allen (knee/groin), G Thomas Austin (knee), G Mike Brisiel (ankle/knee), LB Tim Dobbins (hamstring), TE Joel Dreessen (hip), RB Arian Foster (quad), TE Garrett Graham (hamstring), CB Brandon Harris (hamstring), CB Kareem Jackson (knee), WR Bryant Johnson (hamstring), CB Johnanthan Joseph (calf), CB Brice McCain (ham/concussion), CB Sherrick McManis (hamstring), LB DeMeco Ryans (elbow/hamstring/knee), QB Matt Schaub (right shoulder), DE Antonio Smith (ankle), RB Ben Tate (groin/achilles), WR Kevin Walter (illness), RB Derrick Ward (ankle)