Who’s Playing, Who’s Not vs. Chiefs

Expect the Ravens’ starters to see nearly a full half of action in home opener.

Posted by Ryan Mink on Thursday, August 18th, 2011 at 5:25 pm | Categories: Ryan Mink

Expect to see more from the Ravens’ starters in their second preseason game.

The first-team got two series in Baltimore’s preseason opener against the Philadelphia Eagles. Most starters will play well into the second quarter Friday versus the Kansas City Chiefs.

Generally the starters see about the same limited action in the first two preseason games, but chalk up the change once again to the lockout.

“We have a shorter offseason this year. We didn’t have any OTAs,” Head Coach John Harbaugh said. “We need to get ready to play. We’re going to be playing a regular season game very soon.”

The Ravens have a number of potential first-time starters or new pieces that they want to mesh. That includes rookie right tackle Jah Reid, wide receiver Lee Evans, tight ends Ed Dickson and Dennis Pitta, defensive tackle Terrence Cody and safeties Tom Zbikowski and Bernard Pollard.

There are some exceptions to the starters’ anticipated┬áplaying time. Longtime veterans such as linebackers Ray Lewis and Terrell Suggs, safety Ed Reed and defensive tackle Haloti Ngata will likely once again only see a series or two.

Revamped Offensive Line

The Ravens’ offensive line will be much of the focus in the second game, and Harbaugh gave a preview of what fans will see at the beginning.

Expect Reid at right tackle and the debut of Oneil Cousins at right guard. Bryan Mattison will start at center and be backed up by rookie free agents Ryan Bartholomew and Tim Barnes.

Baltimore surrendered six sacks in the first preseason game.

“Well I don’t want to see sacks,” Harbaugh said. “I definitely want to do a better job with that.”

Marshal Yanda (back spasms) will sit out. He could return next week, Harbaugh said.

J. Smith To See More Snaps

Smith saw very limited action against the Philadelphia Eagles. He didn’t get the start and he recorded one tackle in one series.

Now with his groin tweak a thing of the past, Smith will see more action, according to Defensive Coordinator Chuck Pagano.

“He’s just learning everything,” Pagano said. “Again, he’s not where he should be because of the set back, but now that we’ve got him out here we’re kind of force-feeding him in there. And it’ll be interesting. We’re going to up his reps this game. I can’t wait to see him play.”

Smith and Cary Williams have been the team’s first-team cornerbacks ever since Philadelphia. Williams could also get an extended look Friday.

Dickson, Others Will Make Debut

Pitta wowed fans with a leaping 27-yard reception on the first preseason snap in Philadelphia. Now it could be Dickson’s turn to get the start.

The two young tight ends have been battling during training camp. Dickson missed the opener because of a hamstring injury but has since returned to practice.

Cornerback Domonique Foxworth has also been encouraged by his knee’s progress and could play against the Chiefs after sitting out the Eagles game.

Running back Ricky Williams will likely make his debut. He sat out last week because he didn’t have enough practices under his belt to make the coaches feel safe using him.

Wide receiver David Reed, tackle Ramon Harewood and defensive tackle Brandon McKinney have all been activated off the physically unable to perform list and should return to the field.

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