WESTMINSTER The Baltimore Ravens have endured a lot of health problems at cornerback since training camp launched, injuries headlined by the loss of Domonique Foxworth for the season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament.
Fortunately for the Ravens, cornerback Chris Carr’s lower back injury isn’t regarded as serious. He was held out for precautionary reasons.
"I’m fine," Carr said. "I kind of tweaked it and can’t really do anything for a while and then I’m fine. I think I just need to get it realigned and let the inflammation calm down."
Because of thin depth, Carr has had to take a lot of repetitions since camp began.
The Ravens want to make sure this doesn’t become a chronic condition.
"He just had a little tightness in his lower back, and he’s taken a lot of reps the last two days," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. "I think it was smart to have him not practice."
Carr lobbied to be allowed to practice, but the medical staff disagreed.
"We’ve got people down, I don’t want to leave everyone out there exhausted," Carr said. "Since there was no improvement, I don’t want to do anything where I’m going to be out and make it something serious. It’s just precautionary."
Carr said he has been dealing with the injury for years, but predicted he’ll practice as soon as today.
"I expect to be out at the next practice," Carr said. "I think I know my body. I think I’ll be ready."
Carr was bothered by the injury last year during camp and also when he was with the Tennessee Titans.
"I did something to it a long time ago, and it’s just one of those things that will flare up every now and then," Carr said. "It’s definitely not as bad as last year when I did it.
That’s a good sign because I still do my preventative exercises for it. Last year, it took about four days. Last year, I could barely walk. This isn’t anything like that."
WASHINGTON PROGRESSING: The Ravens took a conservative approach with cornerback Fabian Washington to begin camp, starting him out on the physically unable to perform list.
Out since last season with a torn anterior cruciate ligament, Washington passed his physical Friday.
Then, he wasn’t cleared for contact drills until Sunday afternoon.
Now, Washington is practicing with the first-team defense with no apparent restrictions.
"I’ve probably been more cautious with him than he’s been," Harbaugh said. "The reason we’ve held him back is more me than anything else. He’s been pushing every day to do more, and he just refused to wear the red jersey. He looked fine, so that’s a good sign."
SMALL SKIRMISH: Tight end Todd Heap and outside linebacker Edgar Jones got in a brief skirmish that essentially consisted of a brief shoving match and some angry words.
No punches were thrown between the two players who used to share the same meeting room last season when Jones played tight end.
"That was nothing," Jones said. "Me and Todd were kind of wrestling, getting after each other back and forth. We’re good friends. Even after it was over, we were laughing and clowning with each other.
"We fight just like brothers. That’s the guy who taught me how to play tight end. No hard feelings, me and Todd talked about it as soon as it was over."
Heap said the altercation is quickly forgotten.
"That’s my fellow tight end last year," Heap said. "So, we were just doing a little bit of talking. Hey, that happens when you’re playing football."
NOT PRACTICING: Besides Carr, tight end Davon Drew (hamstring) and offensive tackle Tony Moll (undisclosed) didn’t practice as well as the following players that haven’t passed their physicals: safety Ed Reed (hip), cornerback Lardarius Webb (knee), offensive tackle Oniel Cousins (throat), center Matt Birk (elbow), linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo (quadriceps) and running back Matt Lawrence (knee).
Reed had a bit of fun while watching practice yelling to the offensive players: "I can beat y’all on one leg!"
Cornerback Walt Harris (Achilles’ tendon) and offensive tackles Jared Gaither (back) and Stefan Rodgers (knee, ankle) returned to practice.
RAVENS NO LONGER ON MASN: The Ravens’ deal with MASN is over, senior vice president of public and community relations Kevin Byrne confirmed.
The Ravens negotiated with MASN, but a deal wasn’t able to be worked out.
The Ravens will have their first preseason game on ESPN and WJZ and broadcast their final three preseason games on WBAL.
The Ravens are talking with other local television networks for where to have their team-related programming and something could happen soon.
WBAL and Comcast SportsNet are the most viable options.
QUICK HITS: Reserve running back Jalen Parmele is the frontrunner to be the primary kickoff returner. He averaged 31.4 yards per kickoff last season, ranking third overall in the league. His long return was 53 yards. Among the candidates for punt returner: Mark Clayton, Prince Miller, Donte’ Stallworth and Tom Zbikowski. … Shayne Graham converted all but one of his 13 field goal tries. His lone miss was from 53 yards. Billy Cundiff was given the day off. … The offense struggled during a red-zone drill after dominating the defense Sunday. … Defensive tackle Lamar Divens intercepted a deflected Marc Bulger pass. … The Ravens gave several 30-and-over players the day off, including linebacker Ray Lewis, nose guard Kelly Gregg and wide receiver Derrick Mason.