QB Mallett must be ready in a pinch
Sure, Ryan Mallett would love to know sooner rather than later his status for the Ravens’ game against the NewYork Jets this Sunday at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, N.J.
But as the backup quarterback, Mallett doesn’t get the luxury of advance notice. So he’s not stressing out about whether he will start for Joe Flacco.
“You’ve got to be ready at a drop of a hat,” Mallett said after Thursday’s practice. “Something can happen during a game, any week of the season. So you’ve just always got to be ready.”
For the second consecutive day, Mallett worked with the first-team offense as Flacco nursed a right shoulder injury suffered in Sunday’s 27-23 loss against the New York Giants. Mallett said he is rooting for Flacco to return to a team that has lost three straight games.
“I hope he’s out there Sunday,” Mallett said. “As a competitor, of course I want to play, but I want what’s best for the team.”
Mallett started six games last season — four for the Houston Texans, then the final two of the Ravens’ season. He helped the Ravens beat the Pittsburgh Steelers, 20-17, on Dec. 27 with a passing performance that included a 68.3 percent completion rate, 274 yards and one touchdown.
Mallett worked out with the starters this past offseason while Flacco was recovering from surgery to repair his knee injury. Mallett is leaning on that familiarity with his teammates, and on offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, to help him this week.
“Being able to be comfortable with the guys that are out there and throw to them a little bit more during the offseason and this week while Joe is resting has been good,” Mallett said.
Mornhinweg expressed confidence in Mallett to lead the offense if Flacco is unavailable.
“He had a really good practice [Wednesday] and even better practice today,” Mornhinweg said. “So he had three or four things yesterday. He cut that down to one or two today. … So I’m certain he’s going to be ready to play Sunday, no question about it.” Injury report: In addition to Flacco, seven players sat out their second consecutive day of practice: outside linebackers Terrell Suggs (left biceps) and Elvis Dumervil (foot), return specialist Devin Hester Sr. (thigh), inside linebacker C.J. Mosley (hamstring), wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. (ankle), cornerback Shareece Wright “You’ve got to be ready at the drop of a hat,” backup quarterback Ryan Mallett said. (pulled hamstring) and right guard Marshal Yanda (shoulder).
Cornerback Jimmy Smith (concussion) was limited for the second straight day and wore a red noncontact mesh jersey over his uniform. Cornerback Jerraud Powers (groin) was limited in his return Thursday. Joining them in limited participation were wide receiver Kamar Aiken (thigh) and free safety Kendrick Lewis (thigh).
Rookie left tackle Ronnie Stanley (foot) practiced fully for the second consecutive day
Wide receiver Breshad Perriman wore a noncontact jersey for the second consecutive day. After wearing one Wednesday, wide receiver Mike Wallace practiced without it. Dumervil working: Hobbled by a persistent foot ailment, Dumervil said Thursday that there is no timetable for his return to the Ravens and that he isn’t entirely sure he will be able to play again this season.
“All I can do is just go out and do what I need to do to try and get back, and it’s just waiting it out at that point,” Dumervil, 32, said. “So I’ve just got to keep going, keep grinding, keep working, and it’ll happen.”
Dumervil, who sat out Sunday’s loss, is loath to discuss the specifics of his injury. Even after coach John Harbaugh said nearly a week ago that Dumervil lacked the strength and explosiveness that made him one of the most feared pass rushers in the NFL, Dumervil shrugged off a question about the exact nature of the ailment, simply referring to it as “the foot area.”
Dumervil is unable to help a pass rush that is tied for 19th in the league in sacks, with just 11 in six games.
“It’s always tough as a competitor,” he said. “You want to go out and be as healthy as you can and be there for your team. But it’s a work in progress. So that’s what I’m doing.” Jackson ‘blessed’ with second chance: Asa Jackson’s return to the Ravens did not resonate until he made his way Wednesday morning to the entrance of the team’s training facility in Owings Mills — a place he had called home for four years.
“To be honest, it didn’t click for me until I came back this morning and I was like, ‘Wow, this is really happening,’ ” the cornerback and return specialist said after Wednesday’s practice. “Not in a million years did I think I would be back playing here, but I’m just so happy and blessed that the coaches are giving me another opportunity, and I’m going to do all I can with it.”
Selected in the fifth round of the 2012 NFL draft by the Ravens, Jackson was signed Tuesday to the practice squad. Jackson would need to be promoted to the 53-man active roster to play Sunday, but with the uncertain availability of Hester, Jimmy Smith, Wright and Powers, Jackson could be in line to play.
“That’s what I came here to do,” Jackson, 26, said of contributing. “I came here to play and help this team in any way. That would be awesome, but it’s not a new thing to me. I’ll be prepared and ready to go if that’s what they need me to do.” End zone: Mornhinweg joked that he endured several nights of limited sleep in his first week as the team’s offensive coordinator last week. “Heck, I went through almost a whole bottle of Visine,” he said. “We put everything we had into that thing, and it’s been similar to this week.” … Defensive coordinator Dean Pees said he has been briefed by Mornhinweg on Jets starting quarterback Geno Smith, whom Mornhinweg coached in 2013 and 2014. “I think it always helps when somebody can give you insight on somebody’s athletic skills and personality and mindset running the system and all those kinds of things,” Pees said. “Marty was very complimentary.”