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Ed Reed challenges one-game suspension

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Ed Reed challenges one-game suspension

The Ravens’ ever-changing secondary could lose another key piece for this Sunday’s game at the San Diego Chargers.

The NFL notified the Ravens that safety Ed Reed would be suspended for one game because of three illegal hit penalties to the head and neck in the since 2010. Reed will contest the penalty.

"He’s going to appeal the suspension right away," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. "We should know something very soon. … We should have a decision by Wednesday."

Reed was called for an unnecessary roughness penalty in the third quarter of Sunday’s 13-10 victory at the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Reed hit Steelers receiver Emmanuel Sanders after he made a 20-yard catch. The ball was moved to the Ravens’ 12 but the Steelers had to settle for a field goal for the final points of the game.

Reed was hit with the same penalty in Week 3 vs. the New England Patriots when he leveled then-receiver Deion Branch at the end of the third quarter. Reed and Branch quickly exchanged pats on the helmet after the play.

"None of those were (intended) to injure or harm in any way. When you look at the hits that’s pretty obvious," Harbaugh said. "We all know Ed. Ed respects the game. He respects his fellow players…. We stand behind him.

"I was very surprised. I didn’t see that one coming."

If the suspension is upheld, Reed wouldn't be allowed to practice or be at the Ravens' facilities in addition to sitting out the road game in San Diego. He would be reinstated a week from today.

“We cannot tolerate repeated violations of rules, especially rules related to player safety,” Ray Anderson, NFL executive vice president of football operations, said in a statement.  “We will continue to take the strongest possible action to deter these types of violations and protect our players.”

The Ravens already are without cornerbacks Lardarius Webb (knee) and Jimmy Smith, who could return from groin surgery by season's end.

Cornerback Chris Johnson, who was signed last week and played a key role in the victory vs. Pittsburgh, strained hamstring and only lasted six snaps. Johnson forced the first turnover of the game that led to the Ravens’ first points.

Johnson’s injury isn’t deemed serious. He left the team Monday to return home to Dallas to pack up more of his belongings.

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Steelers players plunder Le'Veon Bell's locker a day after missed deadline

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Steelers players plunder Le'Veon Bell's locker a day after missed deadline

Le'Veon Bell decided not to return to the Steelers this season, and his former teammates have apparently decided they can have his belongings. 

The All-Pro running back didn't sign his $14.5 million franchise tag by Tuesday's deadline, and thus is ineligible to play this season.

Steelers player were seen plundering his locker Wednesday in front of reporters. Defensive end Bud Dupree went right for Bell's cleats, thanking him for the Jordan brand shoes and saying he wishes Bell success.

Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger told reporters he sent Bell his well-wishes, but got no response from his former backfield mate. 

It's unclear what Bell plans to do next, but it's crystal clear the Steelers have moved on, with his shoes in tow. 

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Lamar Jackson, Robert Griffin III prepared to start if hip injury sidelines Joe Flacco

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Lamar Jackson, Robert Griffin III prepared to start if hip injury sidelines Joe Flacco

Rookie quarterback Lamar Jackson has had his fair share of life changing moments. 

Winning the Heisman Trophy in 2016, being drafted by the Ravens in the first-round of the 2018 NFL Draft, and come Sunday, possibly his first NFL start.

With Joe Flacco nursing a hip injury suffered against the Pittsburgh Steelers Week 9, the 21-year-old could be leading the Ravens for a full 60 minutes against division rival Cincinnati Bengals in what could be a defining moment of their season.

"I'm just going into it like any other week," Jackson said Wednesday. "Just preparing for whatever."

While Jackson has appeared in all nine games going 7-for-12 for 87 passing yards and one touchdown, he is the only first-round quarterback out of the 2018 draft that has yet to start this season. 

When asked how he would feel if his name is called Sunday, Jackson said he would have butterflies at first but added once the ball is snapped, "it's on."

Through the Ravens' first half of the season, how and when Jackson is utilized at either quarterback or receiver, has lacked consistency. Add in the lack of highlight reel passes from him and many are concerned he's not ready for an NFL start. 

The fast style of NFL play compared to that of college football was something Jackson admittedly struggled with throughout the preseason. But with nine regular season games under his belt, Jackson feels that is the area where he's taken the biggest strides. 

"Calling the plays," Jackson said. "Before I'd have to ask coach a hundred times, 'say it again, say it again,' but now he says it one time to me. Don't get me wrong, sometimes if [the call] is long or whatever I have to ask [coach to] say it again, but other than that I'm getting better with that."

Head coach John Harbaugh offered no insight on who would be their starting quarterback on Sunday and it can be expected he'll keep hush up until the last moment. Flacco was not on the practice field during media availability Wednesday, either. 

But let's not forget the other veteran quarterback on their roster; Robert Griffin III

For the first time since 2009, the Ravens decided to keep three quarterbacks on their 53-man roster for this very reason.

After sitting out of football for a year, RGIII was given a second chance in Baltimore, but has been a gameday inactive since the start of the season. If the week progresses and neither Flacco or Jackson seem ready, it could be the comeback of the once Offensive Rookie of the Year. 

"That's my job. That's why they brought me here," Griffin III said Wednesday on if he feels prepared to possibly start. "They brought me here to be a pro. They brought me here to help this team if need be. I try to help the defense every week on scout team and then do those [reps], and if my number's called I'll be able to go out there and lead this team."

Both RGIII and Jackson said that it would be "awesome" if they were named the starting QB on Sunday, but that no matter who it ends up being they're all here for one another.

"I'm going to continue to help [Lamar] just like I have all season because we're about the Ravens here," Griffin III said. "It's not about individuals. We've got a pretty daunting task ahead with this Bengals team and then just with the rest of our schedule, so we've got to make sure we make the most of every opportunity."

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