McClain's back injury continues to be concern

McClain's back injury continues to be concern
July 25, 2013, 8:00 pm
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John Harbaugh says Ravens have a long way to go

(David Richard-USA TODAY Sports)

It remains uncertain when inside linebacker Jameel McClain (spinal cord contusion) will be cleared to play, but his return does not sound imminent. Coach John Harbaugh had a little more to say about McClain’s injury Thursday.

“When you look at the MRI and you see what’s on there, there’s no denying the fact it’s not safe for him at this time, so there’s no way that we are going to put him out there until it clears up,” Harbuagh said.

McClain’s uncertain status makes the offseason signing of linebacker Daryl Smith even more important. Smith was active in practice Thursday and seemed to be fitting in smoothly after leaving the Jaguars as their all-time leading tackler.

“Daryl Smith’s signing was just a great move by (general manager) Ozzie (Newsome) and his guys,” Harbaugh said. “(Linebackers coach) Ted Monachino had a lot to do with that. Ted coached him down in Jacksonville, so he knew him so well, and he’s better than advertised as a leader and as a football leader.”

The Ravens will need Smith even more than they anticipated if McClain’s injury does not progress.