Ravens Update

David Reed suspended for opener for violating drug policy OWINGS MILLS -- Baltimore Ravens wide receiver David Reed was suspended without pay for the season-opener as well as an additional game check by the league for violating the NFL substance-abuse policy, a punishment that will cost him a total of $52,941 and affect the Ravens' return game and depth on offense.

This NFL discipline stems from a drug case last year in Baltimore County where Reed was charged with misdemeanor possession of marijuana after officers discovered marijuana at his residence after neighbors called the police to complain about smoke allegedly coming out the front door. The case was essentially dropped when prosecutors moved it to an inactive court docket called the 'stet' docket and Reed wasn't given any jail time or criminal record. No legal action will be taken as long as Reed remains out of trouble.

Despite how it was adjudicated, the NFL still regarded the incident as a violation of it policy. The Ravens weren't caught off-guard by the suspension and were awaiting this action from the league office.

"We were aware that this would happen," the team said in a statement.

Drafted in the fifth round last year out of Utah, Reed led the NFL with a 29.3 kickoff return average and established a franchise record for longest kickoff return with a 103-yard return for a touchdown against the Houston Texans. Reed's suspension begins Saturday and he's eligible to return Sept. 12, the day after the Ravens' game against the Steelers at M&T Bank Stadium. He doesn't count against the Ravens' roster limit of 53 players during the suspension. With Reed out for the Steelers game, the Ravens will likely turn to rookie draft picks Torrey Smith and Tandon Doss to work behind starters Anquan Boldin and Lee Evans at wide receiver. If the younger receivers falter, a veteran like Chris Chambers has been linked to the Ravens as a possibility.

The Ravens could use rookie wide receiver LaQuan Williams on kick returns as well as Smith or Jalen Parmele.

Docked a pair of $26,470 game checks, Reed is due a $450,000 base salary this season. He was signed to a three-year contract last year worth $1.34 million that includes a $133,900 signing bonus.

Tyrod Taylor says he'll be ready for opener after bruising his shoulder

OWINGS MILLS -- Less than a day after suffering a bruised left shoulder during the Baltimore Ravens' preseason finale Thursday night against the Atlanta Falcons, rookie quarterback Tyrod Taylor expressed confidence that he'll be ready for the season-opener against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Taylor's left, non-throwing arm remains in a sling, and he underwent a magnetic resonance imaging exam Friday. Tests haven't revealed any structural damage such as a fracture or separation, and it's believed to be only a soft-tissue injury.

"I think I'll be ready, especially with the couple of days that we have off," Taylor said "That allows me to go get treatment and take care of my body. So, I'm looking forward to getting back and getting healthy and starting out the week well."

Ravens coach John Harbaugh reiterated that he doesn't believe it's serious. "No, it just looks the same," Harbaugh said. "I would say it just confirms that it doesn't seem to be a real serious thing. I'm sure he's got some soreness in there. I think he's going to be OK."

Taylor said the pain is subsiding a bit after being blasted to the Georgia Dome turf by Falcons defensive end Kroy Biermann when offensive tackle Ramon Harewood missed his block. And Taylor emphasized that he has his normal range of motion.

"It feels the same or a little bit less," Taylor said. "It's more so just sore. The pain should go away. It's soreness. The range of motion is pretty good. It's just sore right now." Taylor added that he doesn't think it's necessary for the Ravens to go out and sign a veteran backup.

"I don't think it is," Taylor said. "It's still the coaches' decision, but I think I've done every thing I could this preseason to show them that I can be that backup guy. I'm going to continue to be hard worker and I'm going to try to win over my teammates."

A sixth-round draft pick from Virginia Tech and a former Atlantic Coast Conference Offensive Player of the Year, Taylor was supposed to solidify his status as the backup to Joe Flacco.

Instead his start against the Falcons turned into a nightmare as he completed 2 of 3 passes for 16 yards and an interception before leaving the game with the shoulder injury.

"It was frustrating, because I knew that I was going to get a lot of playing time that game, and it was a chance for me to go out and impress and improve my game," Taylor said."So, it was frustrating at the time. As far as how serious the injury was after they did the testing, I passed everything. I knew it was just a matter of time before I could just get it back healthy." Taylor is just grateful that he didn't hurt his throwing arm.

"I can still go through my throwing motion and still stay loose," Taylor said. "Yes, I think it's a good thing that it is my off-shoulder." The Ravens are waiting to see what quarterbacks become available, including Sage Rosenfels. Other options include Jake Delhomme, J.P. Losman, Todd Bouman and Brodie Croyle, who was cut Friday by the Arizona Cardinals.

The Ravens have also reached out to former backup Marc Bulger about whether he wants to come out of retirement. The former Pro Bowl quarterback's stance at this time is that he's not interested unless it becomes an emergency situation if Flacco was sidelined with a significant injury.

"It's like I've been saying all along, it's going to depend on who's out there," Harbaugh said. "That's what affects the decision more than anything."

In four preseason games, Taylor has passed for 408 yards, one touchdown and three interceptions. He has completed 61.7 percent of his throws. Now, he's hoping to return to practice as soon as Wednesday in advance of Sunday's home game at M&T Bank Stadium.

"Yeah, that would be great," Taylor said. "I'll continue to do all the treatment possible. I won't be going anywhere. I'll be in town."

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