Gaither Not Ruling Out Week 5 Return

Jared Gaither wore a neck brace on Wednesday, but he said he might play Sunday.

Posted by Mike Duffy on Wednesday, October 7th, 2009 at 5:58 pm | Categories: Mike Duffy

Ravens left tackle Jared Gaither stands a giant 6-foot-9 and weighs 340 pounds, which made the white padded brace around his neck almost look like a turtleneck.

But it was a necessity after he was carted off the field last Sunday against the New England Patriots when the crown of his helmet crashed into quarterback Joe Flacco’s back.  After a magnetic resonance imaging exam returned positive news, the Ravens are doing everything they can to get Gaither back on the field.

Head coach John Harbaugh said there was a possibility that time could come this weekend against the Cincinnati Bengals.

“Jared is feeling OK,” Harbaugh said before Wednesday’s practice.  “The neck is a little stiff, so he’s got the neck brace on.  But he’s gone through all the activity that we’ve done so far.  I don’t think he’ll practice today, but we’ll see how it goes.  He’s got a chance to play on Sunday.”

Gaither did not practice Wednesday, but he said he has been working hard at rehabilitation.

“It’s been day-by-day,” he said.  “Every day, I’m getting two treatments and working on coming back. 

“I’m not ruling this week out and skipping to next week or anything like that.”

Without Gaither, the Ravens have moved rookie Michael Oher to the left side and brought Marshal Yanda to slide in at right tackle.

Two other starters did not practice on Wednesday: wideout Derrick Mason (neck) and linebacker Jarret Johnson (shoulder). Receiver Demetrius Williams was held out because he was sick.

Ravens cornerback Chris Carr (groin) was a limited participant, while linebacker Tavares Gooden (shoulder), defensive tackle Haloti Ngata (back) and safety Ed Reed (knee) practiced fully.

For the Bengals, rookie offensive tackle Andre Smith is out for the game with an injured foot, while running back Cedric Benson (hip), linebackers Rasad Jeanty (finger) and Rey Maualuga (knee) and safety Chinedum Ndukwe (hamstring) did not practice.

Defensive tackles Domata Peko (chest) and Tank Johnson (foot) were both limited, while cornerback David Jones (foot) and safety Roy Williams (forearm) were full participants.

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