The two overarching themes up on the podium before the Ravens practiced on Wednesday was the offense’s run/pass ratio (the quarterback, Joe Flacco, naturally defended all the passing) and the team’s past struggles against 4-3 fronts and the Cover 2 defense (John Harbaugh shot those questions down in a hurry).
Ray Rice handled himself well after getting just five carries in the 22-17 loss to the Seattle Seahawks. He didn’t call out the coaching staff, but still politely made his case for more carries going forward.
“I am never going to be the guy that talks about touches,” said Rice, who has averaged nine carries in the team’s three losses. “But obviously, we know going into a game, five carries is not going to cut it.”
And between his usual utterances of “the bottom line” and “any given Sunday,” Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis also questioned Cam Cameron’s game plan and campaigned for Rice to get more carries.
“We know who our bell cow is on offense,” Lewis said. “If that talent right there isn't touching the ball … 25, 30 times, then you have to question yourself, 'What are we actually doing balance-wise?' Jamal Lewis was that type of player back in the day. Ray Rice is definitely one of those talents that has to get an offense going. So, I just think our offensive guys will definitely do a better job getting the ball in his hands."
I am assuming that Lewis is speaking for most, if not all, of his teammates when he says the Ravens need to get back to running the ball after Flacco threw 150 passes in the team’s past three games. There is tension in the Castle for sure, but it doesn’t appear to be near a critical level. That could change in a week, though, with 6-3 Cincinnati visiting M&T Bank Stadium on Sunday and 8-1 San Francisco coming over for Thanksgiving dinner.
“[Offensive coordinator Cam Cameron and his players] will work that part out,” Lewis said. “Our job is just to weather the storm until we get that total balance over there, and things start rolling smooth."