Ravens' Weaver has a neck injury, not serious

OWINGS MILLS - Baltimore Ravens defensive end Tony Weaver merely strained his neck when he was forced out of Sunday's 9-6 loss to the Miami Dolphins. <P> A magnetic resonance imaging exam conducted Wednesday revealed no structural damage, according to trainer Bill Tessendorf. Weaver was initially diagnosed with a shoulder stinger.

Weaver remains sore with muscle spasms from the way his neck was bent backward in the football game. The defensive starter is listed as questionable on the injury report.

"He has gotten past the initial discomfort," Tessendorf said. "Now, we're waiting for the muscles to calm down and get back to normal." Weaver was concerned earlier in the day while he awaited the results of the exam.

"It was a bad one," said Weaver, who ranks second on the Ravens with five sacks. "I'm definitely worried because you really don't know how badly you're hurt."

FUMBLE CLEARED UP: According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Jamal Lewis isn't culpable for the fumble that followed an attempted handoff in overtime that led to Olindo Mare's game-winning field goal.

The NFL rushing leader was originally credited with the fumble that linebacker Zach Thomas recovered. Now, quarterback Anthony Wright has been assigned the blame for the turnover.

"I never had possession of the football, never clenched it, never put it away or anything," Lewis said. "It dropped. Who is to blame? You can't blame anybody.

"It was one of those things. I never grasped it. Who knows? That is behind us. All we can do is concentrate on it in practice and work on the handoff and our exchange and we'll be all right." HAVE A CIGAR: Wright is awaiting much more than his second start on Sunday against the Seattle Seahawks at M&T Bank Stadium. He and his wife, Nicole, are expecting a baby girl any minute now. "She was due today," Wright said. "Hopefully, she'll hold out for me until next Monday or Tuesday."

Naturally, Wright has been preoccupied with the duties of fatherhood, but is remaining focused on football.

The Wrights already have an eight-year-old daughter named Antiona. They plan to name this daughter, Trinity.

Of course, if her delivery begins during a practice session, Wright is ready to use his trademark mobility to dash toward the hospital. "During a practice, I got to go," Wright said. INJURY UPDATE: Rookie quarterback Kyle Boller is off crutches a week after surgery to repair a torn quadriceps, and he reports good progress in his rehabilitation.

The starter is projected to miss at least the next three weeks.

"I feel like I'm a little bit ahead of schedule," Boller said. "I'm a quick healer. It's definitely going well."

Tight end John Jones is listed as doubtful with a quadriceps injury of his own.

Meanwhile, wide receiver Frank Sanders has a sprained right ankle and a chipped bone. Sanders missed the Dolphins game and expects to be a game-time decision.

"I'm still getting treatment, but I'm practicing," Sanders said. "The swelling is gone for the most part. It has been something with my feet or ankle all year."

Wide receiver Marcus Robinson (chest) is also listed as questionable.

The Seahawks list linebackers Randall Godfrey (sternum) and D.D. Lewis (hip) and free safety Damien Robinson (shoulder) as questionable.

Rookie safety Ken Hamlin (knee) and running back Maurice Morris (probable) are probable.

ON THE SAME PAGE: Although a published report indicated that massive offensive tackle Orlando Brown and line coach Jim Colletto briefly exchanged words, Brown said the problem has been squared away.

Brown has been plagued by penalties and occasional lapses in pass protection and rotates with reserve Ethan Brooks. He has emphasized his desire to take the majority of, if not all of the snaps.

"Yeah, I'm good with coach Jim," Brown said. "He's my coach and I've got to listen to him."

BACK AGAIN: With return specialist Lamont Brightful's quantum leap of improvement in recent weeks, veteran Dedric Ward's presence was no longer required.

His release Tuesday led to defensive end Riddick Parker being signed by Baltimore for the third time this season. Parker's signing also follows Weaver's shoulder injury.

"Veteran or not, in this profession you understand that there's a certain amount of instability," Parker said. "I understand that this is business and there is a numbers game. I was a casualty of that. It's good to be back."

QUICK HITS: According to Stats. Inc., Brown has been flagged for eight penalties, including five false starts and two holding calls. … Travis Taylor leads the AFC with eight dropped passes and is tied for second overall in the league. Seahawks wideout Darrell Jackson leads the NFL in that unofficial category with a dozen drops.

… The Ravens have directed 75 passes toward Pro Bowl tight end Todd Heap. And he leads the team with 43 receptions for 511 yards with two touchdowns.

Aaron Wilson writes for the Carroll County Times.

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