Because of the nature and timing of the injury, it’s expected that Nakamura is out for the remainder of the season and will likely require surgery to repair the damage.
His leg crumpled awkwardly underneath the weight of Browns kick returner and wide receiver Joshua Cribbs, who was inadvertently blocked into Nakamura by tight end L.J. Smith.
Nakamura immediately grabbed his ankle and was clearly in agony while being carted off the field.
“It was pretty stunning,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. “It didn’t look good and he was in pain out there. We were excited about the way we returned the kick, but that was a little bit of a shocker right there.”
Nakamura is a Cleveland native who was an all-state selection at St. Edward High School in Cleveland.
Nakamura had several family members attending the game as his guests, including his mother, Karen. She visited with him after he suffered the injury.
Nakamura was slated to return with the team. His leg is in a cast.
INJURY UPDATES: Pro Bowl outside linebacker Terrell Suggs sprained his right knee on a low block from Browns quarterback Brady Quinn that drew a penalty.
Suggs was wearing a full leg brace and had an electronic stem device attached to his leg. He’s scheduled to undergo a magnetic resonance imaging exam today.
“As of right now, I don’t know,” Harbaugh said. “It’s not one of those catastrophic knee injuries.”
Asked if Quinn’s block was a cheap shot, defensive end Trevor Pryce said: “Read between the lines.”
Suggs declined to comment on the injury after consulting with a public relations staffer.
“I’m listening to him,” he said. “It’s all right.”
Inside linebacker Tavares Gooden suffered another concussion and didn’t play for the majority of the second half.
Tight end Todd Heap left the game with a chest injury after taking a shot in the side late in the game, and is expected to undergo a test today.
Meanwhile, defensive tackle Haloti Ngata missed his second consecutive game due to a sprained right ankle.
Justin Bannan replaced him in the starting lineup again.
Ngata had been a picture of durability, starting the first 55 games of his NFL career before being sidelined Nov. 8 against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Ngata was limping during warmups.
The Ravens also deactivated running backs Matthew Lawrence (knee) and Jalen Parmele, offensive tackles Tony Moll and Oniel Cousin, defensive tackle Kelly Talavou, outside linebacker Antwan Barnes and third quarterback John Beck.
Rookie kick returner and cornerback Lardarius Webb played despite being listed as questionable with an illness.
Middle linebacker Ray Lewis started after missing two practices leading up to the game with a foot injury.
Cornerback Fabian Washington started despite a thigh contusion.
The Browns deactivated third quarterback Brett Ratliff, punter Dave Zastudil (right knee), cornerback Coye Francies, offensive lineman Billy Yates, tight ends Greg Estandia and Michael Gaines and wide receiver Chansi Stuckey (calf).
With Zastudil out due to the problem with his plant leg, journeyman punter Reggie Hodges punted in his place.
BIG HIT: Defensive end Dwan Edwards decked Cribbs on the final play of the game, leaving him prone on the field for a long time.
Browns coach Eric Mangini said that Cribbs has feeling in all of his extremities.
Several Cleveland reporters asked Edwards if he was seeking revenge after Quinn’s hit on Suggs.
“It wasn’t retribution,” Edwards said. “I’m definitely not a dirty player. It wasn’t a cheap shot. I’m just playing football.”
QUICK HITS: Webb registered his first NFL sack, tackling Brady Quinn for a loss midway through the second quarter. … Webb also downed a punt deep in Browns territory before the first half ended. … Second-round outside linebacker-defensive end Paul Kruger was active for the second time this season. … The Ravens had just 140 yards of total offense in the first half. The Browns produced only 97 yards. … The Ravens’ game captains were Ray Lewis, free safety Ed Reed and quarterback Joe Flacco. … Former Ravens running back Jamal Lewis was one of the Browns’ game captains in what figures to be his final game against Baltimore since he has announced his plans to retire after the season. … Inside linebacker Prescott Burgess had four special-teams tackles. … Lewis led the Ravens with seven tackles, also recording a sack, followed by nose guard Kelly Gregg’s six tackles. Outside linebacker Jarret Johnson and Pryce also recorded sacks.
Aaron Wilson covers the Baltimore Ravens for the Carroll County Times and the Annapolis Capital.