Ravens tackle Jared Gaither has returned to lifting and almost his playing weight from last season. Returning to practice is a different story.
The offensive tackle has not practiced since Aug. 5 when he sustained back spasms. Later, Gaither said he was diagnosed with a thoracic disk injury that contributed to the spasms.
Gaither said he is unsure when he will be able to practice.
"It’s really hard with this type of injury, as I’ve been told," he said. "As soon as you feel better, you just want to go out there and play. I’m looking forward to doing that. But I pretty much couldn’t tell you because that’s how the injury is. So as soon as I get better, I’ll be out there."
Coach John Harbaugh was noncommittal about Gaither’s progress.
"Seems to be," Harbaugh said. "I really don’t know. We’ll just have to see where he’s at and how he feels in the next couple days."
Gaither said he is running and lifting and weighing in at 330 pounds, which is 19 pounds heavier than his weight in training camp and 10 pounds lighter than last season’s playing weight.
Without Gaither, Oniel Cousins is slated to open the season at right tackle. But Cousins is returning from a concussion, which could open the door for Tony Moll to start there.
Gaither emphasized that he won’t accelerate his return until his back is completely healed.