Ravens cut Lucas, Thomas not on IR for now

<b>Bonus Free Story - Please Consider a Site Subscription</b><br> OWINGS MILLS – There's no longer any doubt whether rookie quarterback Kyle Boller will be the Baltimore Ravens' third quarterback on Sunday against the Oakland Raiders. Veteran quarterback Ray Lucas was released Thursday one day after Boller returned to practice after rehabilitating his surgically-repaired quadriceps. Lucas never appeared in a game for the AFC North leaders.

Meanwhile, outside linebacker Adalius Thomas won't immediately be placed on injured reserve. The Ravens remain at 53 players on the active roster following Lucas' release and long snapper Mike Solwold's promotion from the practice squad. 

INJURY UPDATE: Perennial All-Pro linebacker Ray Lewis remains questionable with a bruised right shoulder joint, but Baltimore coach Brian Billick struck an optimistic chord about his progress. "I think he feels real well this morning," Billick said of Lewis, who wasn't available for interviews. "It's just bruising, so it is something that we feel he can deal with and that we feel good about." The injury-decimated Raiders will be without right offensive guard Mo Collins and center Barret Robbins. Collins and Robbins were downgraded from doubtful to out because of knee injuries. Right offensive tackle Lincoln Kennedy is probable with a concussion. Safety Eric Johnson was removed from the injury report after being listed as probable earlie this week with a knee injury. 

DEALING WITH THOMAS' ABSENCE: Without Thomas, the team has already juggled its defensive lineup by promoting rookie Terrell Suggs. Plus, Thomas' role as a gunner on punts has been assumed by rookie running back Musa Smith. Thomas leads the Ravens in special-teams tackles with 23, also forcing a fumble and blocking a punt. Smith has seven tackles on special teams. "AD had moved inside because John Jones got hurt, so I've been doing it for the last couple of games," Smith said. "We're definitely going to miss him, but you know what they always say about how you have to step up when the team really needs you." Rookie safety Gerome Sapp will help take up the slack, too. He has 13 tackles on special teams to rank third on the team behind Thomas and linebacker Bart Scott. "He is one of those guys that suddenly always is there for you," Billick said of Sapp. "He is a solid special-teams force. His confidence is growing and he is understanding what we need to do." 

QUOTABLE: Billick on whether the bizarre portion of the Raiders' fan base will be in attendance Sunday to create a similar atmosphere to the one from the Ravens-Raiders AFC title game from three years ago: "Yeah, they are probably drinking a lot more, too. Those that can remember that it was us that knocked them out has got me a little concerned, too."

 QUICK HITS: The Ravens practiced at M&T Bank Stadium on Thursday… Former Baltimore safety Rod Woodson is on Oakland's injured reserve. … Quarterbacks and receivers coach David Shaw was a member of the Raiders' offensive staff from 1998 to 2001. … Former Ravens quarterback Jim Harbaugh is now a Raiders offensive assistant. 

Aaron Wilson writes for the Carroll County Times.

Ravens Insider Top Stories