Report: Ray Lewis likely to return

Updated: November 26, 2012, 2:20 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

Terrell Suggs reportedly won't be the only member of the Baltimore Ravens' defense to defy the odds by returning this season from what was thought to be a season-ending injury.

Yahoo! Sports, citing more than six sources, reported that fellow linebacker Ray Lewis is expected to return sometime next month despite tearing his triceps against the Cowboys last month.

"For the greatest player in Ravens history to be able to return from this injury and come on this championship run with us? When he was said to be down and out? Man, that's critical mass. When he comes through that tunnel, that's gonna be the earthquake and the tsunami," Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo told Yahoo! Sports.

Lewis was in San Diego on Sunday to watch his team rally for a 16-13 overtime victory and gave his teammates a pregame speech. He wouldn't confirm that he plans to return this season.

"You've got eyes -- what do you expect to happen? I'm here to support my team," he told Yahoo! Sports.

Sunday's victory, thanks in large part to Ray Rice's fourth-and-29 conversion in the fourth quarter on a drive that allowed the Ravens to tie the game, moved Baltimore to 9-2. The Ravens hold a commanding three-game lead in the AFC North over the Pittsburgh Steelers and Cincinnati Bengals, who both are 6-5.

Suggs returned to play last month despite suffering a torn Achilles tendon in May. Suggs told the website that making it to the AFC Championship Game only to lose last season inspired his quick return.

[+] EnlargeLewis
Kirby Lee/US PresswireRay Lewis was at Qualcomm Stadium on Sunday to watch his team's inspiring overtime victory over the Chargers.

Suggs told the website that doctors told him "the earliest most people come back from this is nine months, but it's usually a year."

"I just chose not to accept that. I had to get back. We came so close last year. We're on the brink of something big. I didn't want to leave the job undone," he told Yahoo! Sports.

The Ravens placed Lewis on the injured/designated to return list last month but had been noncommittal about his chances of playing again this season. Yahoo! is reporting that Lewis might return to practice as soon as Thursday, the first day he is eligible to return.

The website, citing a source close to Lewis, reported that the linebacker is undergoing a form of platelet-rich plasma therapy to treat his injury. Former Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward used a similar therapy to play in Pittsburgh's Super Bowl XLIII win over the Cardinals despite having a sprained knee.

Yahoo! reported that Lewis could return to the field as soon as Dec. 16 against the Denver Broncos or the following week against the New York Giants. If the Ravens decide to be cautious, Lewis could be saved for their playoff opener, as well.

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