Harbaugh believes McClain can return

Harbaugh believes McClain can return
August 20, 2013, 4:15 pm
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Clark still adjusting to Ravens offense

Baltimore Ravens linebacker Jameel McClain (53) against the Houston Texans in the fourth quarter at Reliant Stadium. The Ravens defeated the Texans 34-28.

(Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports)

Ravens coach John Harbaugh has not ruled inside inebacker Jameel McClain (spinal cord contusion) out for the season.

McClain has not been cleared to practice, and Harbaugh said McClain would likely begin the season on the physically unable to perform list. However, Harbaugh expects McClain to be cleared for contact at some point, although it remains uncertain when that will happen. Harbaugh said that McClain undergoes periodic MRI’s.

“He’s in every meeting, he’s training the young guys, he’s staying in phenomenal shape,” Harbaugh said after Tuesday’s practice. “If you see him, he’s a fitness warrior. All he’s going to have to do is get back in football shape, which will take probably a week or two, when he does come back. We’ll just keep taking the MRI’s, and when the MRI’s clear, then he’ll go.

"The MRI will be clear (eventually). There’s no question at some point in time it will be clear. It’s just impossible, they say, to tell us the time frame. It could’ve been clear three months ago. We all hoped for that. It could be three weeks from now. But if we go PUP, which I think we’ll do at this point…we’ll probably get another MRI before we make that decision.”

Asked if McClain had been ruled out for this season, Harbaugh said, “By no means.”

McClain accepted a $1.5 million pay cut last week, reducing his base salary from $3 million to $1.5 million. However, both Harbaugh and McLain remain hopeful that he will play more games at inside linebacker for the Ravens.