Two things here-the normal pregame injury report, and also some news and notes on the game from various places. First up, who’s not going to play and who might not play:
Out: LB Antwan Barnes (chest)
Questionable: DT Justin Bannan (foot), TE Todd Heap (back), LB Jarret Johnson (calf), WR Derrick Mason (shoulder), S Ed Reed (knee), CB Samari Rolle (thigh), K Matt Stover (ankle), CB Fabian Washington (neck)
Out: DE Dave Ball (back), C Kevin Mawae (elbow)
Questionable: CB Tuff Harris (calf)
Probable: CB Nick Harper (groin), DT Albert Haynesworth (knee), LB David Thornton (hip), DE Kyle Vanden Bosch (groin), TE Bo Scaife (illness)
Interpreting those for you: everybody who’s “Out” won’t be playing. Everybody who isn’t “Out” who (a) would normally dress and (b) isn’t Yancey Thigpen is playing. As most people guessed after his interview Tuesday, Mawae has officially been ruled out. This isn’t the worst thing in the world, as Mawae isn’t the strongest center on the team, and struggled with Kris Jenkins’ strength. What I’ll be watching for early is how KVB and Haynesworth look on the defensive line. Obvious, I know, but sometimes storylines are obvious for a reason.
Game preview links:
Scouts Inc. looked at how to neutralize Ed Reed
Football Outsiders has an extensive preview looking at the game using their stats. As I said in another post on the site
(see comment by NewsToTom), you don’t have to think less of Finnegan
because their numbers suggest you should. Context, context, context.
SI’s Bucky Brooks did a preview of his own.
The most (intentionally) amusing preview you’ll read of this weekend is Ray Gustini‘s.
RealScouts picked the Ravens, of course.
Last, but certainly not least, there are two pregame shows you should watch. First, ESPN’s NFL Matchup show-airing at 2 and 6:30 AM-set your DVR. Second, NFL Network’s Playbook is really worth your time-much more in terms of actual game tape and breakdowns than NFL Matchup can provide. For those of you who don’t have NFL Network, check out the clips available on NFL.com, including Mike Mayock’s breakdown of CJ28.