Ravens battling slew of injuries from opener vs. Bengals

Updated: September 11, 2007, 9:32 PM ET
Associated Press

OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Baltimore Ravens return specialist B.J. Sams is out for the season with a torn knee ligament.

Pro Bowl offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden's status is unknown due to a lingering hyperextended left big toe, coach Brian Billick said.

"B.J. is definitely out for the year," Billick said Tuesday night on his weekly WBAL radio show. "It's just a shame."

Sams, in the final year of his contract, tore the anterior cruciate ligament. He is likely to be replaced by rookie Yamon Figurs. This marks the second consecutive season Sams has suffered a season-ending injury at Cincinnati's Paul Brown Stadium; last November he broke his ankle.

Meanwhile, Ogden, who limped off the field early in the second quarter and didn't return in the 27-20 loss Monday night to the Bengals, is still dealing with an injury initially suffered in December.

"[Ogden] didn't reinjure the toe, but he's going through the pain," said Billick, who didn't hold his usual Tuesday interview with reporters. "It's going to be painful all year long. It's a matter of him adjusting to it. I don't know if Jonathan will be able to come back from this or not."

Ogden pondered retirement during the offseason after aggravating the injury in January during a playoff loss to the Indianapolis Colts. After consulting with Carolina Panthers orthopedic surgeon Robert Anderson, Ogden and team officials decided he would not undergo surgery and recommended rehabilitation and rest.

Ogden missed the team's entire offseason and preseason schedule.

"Whether it was surgery or rehab, they chose the course of action together," Billick said. "Jonathan worked very hard. I think Jonathan acted responsibly. I understand the frustration, but I don't think Jonathan did anything wrong. They really felt that this was the better way to go about it."

Meanwhile, linebacker Ray Lewis (triceps), along with quarterback Steve McNair (groin), tight end Daniel Wilcox (ankle) and Ogden received treatment at the team's training complex.

Lewis insisted after the game he had torn his triceps, but team spokesman Kevin Byrne said that team doctor Leigh Anne Curl diagnosed it as a strain and that the team wouldn't have sent Lewis back into the game with a tear. Lewis, along with a few other players, was scheduled to undergo an MRI exam Tuesday.

Wilcox was on crutches Monday night with a sprained right ankle. He had just recovered from a sprained left ankle.

McNair was replaced in the fourth quarter by backup Kyle Boller because of the injury.

"He's a soldier," running back Willis McGahee said of McNair. "That right there shows the character of him. He's out there playing hurt. He could have easily sat out, but he chose not to."


Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press

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