Street Talk J.O. ON “PITCH COUNT”

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OWINGS MILLS — Jonathan Ogden will be in and out of the football game Friday night against the Minnesota Vikings.  The nine-time All-Pro offensive tackle is slated for an abbreviated pitch count at the Metrodome as he makes his preseason debut with coaches forecasting roughly 12 to 15 snaps.
Ogden missed the entire training camp as he dealt with his father’s death.
Now, he’s trying to shed 15 to 20 pounds gained during his personal ordeal along with the rust he accumulated in order to prepare for the Ravens’ Sept. 10 season-opener against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and speed-rushing defensive end Simeon Rice.
“We’ll push it as far as we can, but we have to keep it in mind that it is his first preseason game,” said Ravens coach Brian Billick, whose football team practiced in the indoor practice field for the first time this month. “With the starters in the first preseason game, you’re looking for 12 to 15 plays.
“We need to get at least that, maybe a little more if we can. It’s a little bit different than the rest of the guys that are now in their third game.”
Starters will play the entire first half again, as they did last week.
Meanwhile, this will mark the first action for wide receiver Clarence Moore, who like Ogden, opened training camp on the physically unable to perform list. Moore has been recovering from surgery in the offseason to repair a chronic sports hernia.  He’s chasing impressive rookie Demetrius Williams and fellow third-year pro Devard Darling for the third wide receiver job.
“He can go a little longer, I think,” Billick said. “Clarence needs to get back in a rhythm. We expect a receiver to go a little bit longer.”
TRAINING ROOM: Safety B.J. Ward said he’s nearly over an extended bout with migraines that has kept him out for the past few weeks.  He expects to return as soon as next week if his neurologist and trainers clear him to play.  Ward said his migraines, which brought about dizziness, a lack of balance and a sensitivity to sunlight, weren’t concussion-related. He emphasized that no major medical issue was revealed by CAT scans.
“I feel like I’m ready to go,” Ward said. “I’m almost over the whole thing.”
Safety Gerome Sapp didn’t practice because of a stomach ailment. Linebacker Terrell Suggs had the flu earlier this week and missed a practice.  “I don’t know if we’re passing a little something around,” Billick said.
Running back Jamal Lewis (hip), offensive guard Brian Rimpf (hamstring) and wide receiver Matt Cherry (shoulder) didn’t practice.
QUICK HITS: Billick is expecting a better outing from rookie defensive tackle Haloti Ngata. “He needs to get a little more disciplined in his play, where he belongs, techniques, that type of thing,” Billick said. “Typical of a young player.” … The Ravens have until Tuesday to shed their roster to 75 players following an NFL rule change from previous years where teams had to be down to 65 players. It means nine players will likely be competing in their final game for the Ravens. “They know,” Billick said. “All they have to do is turn on the television, listen to the bubble this and bubble that with the other teams. They look at the numbers. If you have to emphasize that to them, I think they’ve already missed the point.”
Aaron Wilson covers the Baltimore Ravens for the Carroll County Times in Westminster, Maryland.

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Aaron Wilson

About Aaron Wilson

Aaron Wilson covers the NFL for National Football Post as well as the Baltimore Ravens for The Carroll County Times and Ravens24x7.com. He has previously covered the Jacksonville Jaguars and Tennessee Titans and has covered the NFL since 1997.  He has won several regional writing awards, including, most recently, Best Sports News Story for the state of Maryland in voting conducted by the Associated Press managing editors. 

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