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Baltimore Ravens Could Be Without Their Best Offensive Lineman

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Baltimore Ravens guard Marshal Yanda has had a great season this year, named to the 2012 Pro Bowl earlier this week. Pro Football Focus grades Yanda as Baltimore's best offensive lineman, especially as a pass blocker where his 15.2 grade ranks second-best amongst all NFL guards this season. Only Evan Mathis (31.2) graded higher overall than Yanda (28.6) this season (Nate Livings grades out at -12.2). After suffering rib and thigh contusions last week against the Browns, the Baltimore's starting right guard has missed consecutive practices this week.

Ravens Insider John Eisenberg of Comcast Sportsnet in Washington writes:

The Ravens will miss Yanda a lot if he is unable to play Sunday. They’re going to need production from their running game, and the Bengals have one of the NFL’s best pass rushes. That puts the focus on the offensive line, and Yanda, 27, has been the Ravens’ best by a wide margin this season, earning his first-ever Pro Bowl selection.

Ironically when the Ravens faced the Bengals earlier this year, Yanda recorded his first negative score, especially as a run blocker.

Baltimore Beatdown writes:

The bad news is that guard Marshal Yanda has not yet returned to practice from his thigh and rib contusions and is in jeopardy of missing this week's game. Yanda has been voted to his first Pro-Bowl this season and is the Ravens' best offensive lineman. He consistently blocks into the second level on running plays and rarely lets rushers by him in passing situations.

If Yanda is unable to go, the Ravens will likely start Andre Gurode, who has allowed a quarterback sack, seven quarterback hits and nine quarterback pressures on 436 offensive snaps this year.

In other injury news for the Ravens, Baltimore's Anquan Boldin has already been ruled out with a knee.