Gaither is Back in Owings Mills

UPDATED 1:44 p.m.: Ravens offensive tackle Jared Gaither will get a MRI Monday in Baltimore.

Posted by Mike Duffy on Sunday, October 4th, 2009 at 7:05 pm | Categories: 2009 Gameday, Mike Duffy

Following his injury on Sunday, Ravens left tackle Jared Gaither was taken to get a magnetic resonance imaging exam in Boston, but the 6-foot-9, 340-pounder was too big to fit inside Mass General’s machine. 

Gaither was able to fly back to Baltimore with the team and was in the Ravens’ training facility in Owings Mills, Md. Monday afternoon.

Gaither, who was moving all his extremities on the field, was admitted to Mass General Hospital in Boston during Sunday’s 27-21 loss to the Patriots.  Senior vice president of public and community relations Kevin Byrne said tests at Mass General were negative and that Gaither will undergo a magnetic resonance imaging exam in Baltimore on Monday.

The crown of Gaither’s helmet slammed into quarterback Joe Flacco’s back as the massive left tackle tried to block the pass rush. Gaither was attended to by medical staff for about 10 minutes on the field before he was immobilized and wheeled off on a stretcher.

Without Gaither, the Ravens moved rookie Michael Oher to protect Flacco’s blind side and Marshal Yanda came in at right tackle.  Yanda started 12 games at the position in 2007.

“We knew it wasn’t serious [even before the tests],” Harbaugh said. “We’ll see how long he’ll be out.”

Seeing Gaither lie prone on the turf was a grave moment for his teammates.

“I’ll deal with football tomorrow.  I’m just hoping that Jared is OK,” said defensive tackle Trevor Pryce after the game.  “I feel lucky that it hasn’t happened to me, but at the same time, you feel like it is going to happen.  If you play this game long enough, it will.”

Brendon Ayanbadejo injured his leg in the fourth quarter as he tackled Sammy Morris at the end of a 14-yard pass reception.  On the stop, Ayanbadejo got caught in a scrum with a group of pursuing defenders and needed medical attention when the pile lifted.

“I was just trying to drive him back and finish the tackle,” he said.  “That’s all I could do.  I don’t know what happened.” 

In a post game interview, Ayanbadejo said he tore his quadriceps tendon and will need surgery. 

“I’ll get surgery on it and go from there,” Ayanbadejo said. “I’ve never been injured before so it’s pretty tough. At the same time it’s football and things happen.”

Ayanbadejo was named the AFC Defensive Player of the Week last week after he recorded an interception and sack against the Cleveland Browns. He was second on the Ravens in tackles with 17 heading into the game.

Harbaugh did not comment about the linebacker’s injury after the game, but Ayanbadejo hobbled out of the locker room with an immobilizing brace that covered his entire left leg.

Losing Ayanbadejo would be a blow to not only the defense, where he has played extensively in the Ravens’ sub packages, but also special teams, for which he made three Pro Bowls.

More information regarding both injuries will likely be made available in Harbaugh’s Monday press conference that is scheduled for 3:45 p.m.

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