The Baltimore Ravens have activated linebacker Terrell Suggs from the physically unable to perform list and last year’s NFL Defensive Player of the Year is expected to play today against the Houston Texans.
The five-time Pro Bowler will be making a stunning earlier-than-expected return from the torn Achilles tendon he suffered in April. His family and friends have plans to travel to Houston in anticipation of watching him stage one of the quickest returns from this type of significant injury by any athlete.
Suggs, who recorded 14 sacks en route to Defensive Player of the Year honors a year ago, acknowledged earlier this week that a quick return could push back his recovery.
“That’s always a concern,” he said. “That’s why I’ve got the people around me that I trust. We’re going to make the decision as a group, whether it would be better for me to sit out or suit up.”
Ravens coach John Harbaugh had consistently declined to put a timetable on Suggs’ return, leaving many to believe it would be mid-November at the earliest.
Prior to his injury, Suggs had played in all 16 regular-season games in eight of his nine NFL seasons, missing three games in 2009 with a knee injury. His return could be a big boost to an aging Ravens defense that lost its inspirational leader, linebacker Ray Lewis, to a torn triceps and top cornerback, Lardarius Webb, to a knee injury last weekend.
Harbaugh, however, cautioned earlier this week that the team wasn’t expecting too much too soon of Suggs. He’ll likely see limited action if he plays.
“To what extent, to what he’s able to do, I think we should temper our expectations a little bit,” Harbaugh said. “He’s coming off a very serious injury. I think he’s worked really hard. He’s done a great job with the rehab, he’s followed protocol. He had no setbacks throughout the course of the whole deal.”
In the 2010 and 2011 seasons, Suggs paced the Ravens with 25 sacks, the fifth-most in the NFL during that span.