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Injured Ravens Could Have Returned

Despite sitting a few players for precautionary reasons, the Ravens are fairly healthy.

Posted by Mike Duffy on Sunday, January 2nd, 2011 at 6:48 pm | Categories: 2010 Season, Mike Duffy, Week 17 vs Bengals

Towards the end of their 13-7 win over the Cincinnati Bengals, the Ravens pulled a few players for precautionary measures.

While linebacker Dannell Ellerbe and cornerback Josh Wilson’s shoulder stingers were the main concern – they were the only two to be officially reported as “out” in the press box – the Ravens got out of the regular season fairly healthy.

“We did get into a situation where we started getting some injuries,” said Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh.  “Ellerbe went down. Three or four guys went down for us that hurt us.”

Two of the biggest Ravens up front – offensive tackle Michael Oher and defensive tackle Haloti Ngata – left in the third quarter, but Harbaugh thinks they both could have come back.

Oher was pulled after hurting his knee on the Ravens’ second drive of the second half.  Ngata didn’t return after pouncing on a fumble near the sideline at the 8:34 mark, but the Ravens did not announce an injury for the two-time Pro Bowler.

“When Michael got tweaked – whether he could have come back in or not, I think he could have – we basically just decided not to put him back in at that point.  Haloti – same thing,” Harbaugh noted.  “He probably could’ve come back in, but we didn’t want to mess with that. Maybe those guys would’ve come back in, in a different situation.”

Ngata declined to speak with reporters about his status after the game, but Oher seemed optimistic he will be able to play next weekend.

“I should be good,” Oher said.  “[I'll] just get a bunch of treatment, and [I] should be alright.”

Ravens safety Ed Reed also came out for a few series.  He was listed on the injury report last week with an ailing neck, but said his ribs were sore in the post-game press conference.

“They were asking me earlier, actually at halftime to come out,” Reed told reporters.  “It’s a conference game, Cincinnati. You want to continue to play. Next week wasn’t even here yet, I wasn’t even thinking about that. Sometimes you’ve got to listen to your coaches.

“I don’t know if it was my ribs or a muscle right now. But it’s in that area. It reminds me of my senior year. I kind of had the same injury. It’s going to be tough tomorrow.”

Conversely, fullback Le’Ron McClain did return after briefly heading to the sideline.

“I’m good. It was just a little shot to the elbow,” McClain said.  “We just put a pad on it and I went back in.  Everything’s alright.”

In addition, the Ravens got positive results from Todd Heap’s first game back since hurting his hamstring against the Pittsburgh Steelers on Dec. 5.

Heap caught three passes for 53 yards, including a 37-yard screen that set up a Billy Cundiff field goal.

“I feel pretty good right now,” said Heap.  “I haven’t played in a few weeks so all of the little bumps and bruises have had time to heal. I feel like I’m where I want to be right now. I’m feeling as good as I have since I’ve been to the playoffs in my career.”

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