Smith Will Start at QB In Ravens' Next Game

Second-year quarterback Troy Smith
Second-year quarterback Troy Smith "was poised" as a backup in the preseason opener at New England, Ravens Coach John Harbaugh said. (By Jim Rogash -- Getty Images)
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Associated Press
Saturday, August 9, 2008

It's Troy Smith's turn in the Baltimore Ravens' quarterback derby.

After an uneven performance by Kyle Boller in the Ravens' 16-15 victory over the New England Patriots on Thursday night, Smith will start the second preseason game next Saturday against the Minnesota Vikings at M&T Bank Stadium.

The former Heisman Trophy winner will play the majority of the first half against the Vikings.

"We're looking at it as two games with balanced repetitions," Ravens Coach John Harbaugh said late Thursday in Foxborough, Mass. Harbaugh acknowledged he could determine the starter for the regular season opener against the Cincinnati Bengals before the third preseason game.

Boller got the first start, completing 11 of 15 passes for 102 yards. However, the former first-round draft pick also had a fumble and an interception.

"There are a few plays I wish I could take back," said Boller, who also had two passes dropped.

Smith wasn't exactly sterling, either. He completed 5 of 12 passes for 74 yards, but he did connect with ex-Redskins wide receiver Darnerien McCants and Justin Harper for 30 and 18 yards, respectively, to finish with a 62.5 passer rating.

"I thought Troy was poised," Harbaugh said. "He threw some NFL balls in there. That ball across the middle in the fourth quarter was a heck of a throw. He scrambled around and did a nice job."

ยท EAGLES: Brian Westbrook and Philadelphia agreed to a new contract, hours before the team opened its preseason schedule against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Terms of the deal were not announced and the Eagles did not immediately make Westbrook available to comment.

The two-time Pro Bowl running back had said that he wanted to restructure his contract because he felt underpaid. He was in the third year of a five-year, $25 million contract. He was scheduled to earn $3 million this season with a roster bonus of $1.5 million.

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