Head Coach John Harbaugh had plenty of interesting things to say in Monday’s media press conference.
In fact, he called a few players out for their mistakes. The first was Right Tackle Michael Oher, who had Eight False Start penalties in 2010, had two last Sunday against the Titans. Harbaugh said quote:
“You’re not making too much of it. There’s no reason for it. It doesn’t make sense.
“There’s no quicker offensive tackle in football [than Oher]. He doesn’t have to beat the snap count. That’s got to stop. We’ve said it before. My advice to Michael is just slow down, just slow down with your first step. When the ball is snapped, you’ll set, and no one is running around you. They’re not going to run around you. You’re too quick. That’s something we’ve got to get done.”
Two others were Lee Evans and Domonique Foxworth. Harbaugh acknowledged and praised both their effort in “gutting it out” on the field. But that it may be time to look at sitting them until they are fully healthy.
He also attempted to explain the Ravens lack of urgency late in the game and the decision to kick a Field Goal down two scores with less than seven minutes remaining.
We changed the offense,” he insisted. “We were in our two-minute calls. We made our two-minute calls. We were down two scores at that point, and you feel like we have enough time. The bottom line is to get down the field and score, so we don’t want to rush in there and be off the field and be punting again either. It’s not like we had been moving the ball up and down the field. I think the fact of the matter is it worked pretty well because we did move the ball down the field in that drive. To me, the important thing was to move the ball down the field, and you hopefully get the seven [points]. No, we didn’t feel like two-minute [offense] at that point was the best thing to do because the priority was to get down the field and score points.”
It was fourth-and-what from the what? The percentages aren’t really good,” Harbaugh said. “So I figured, let’s get the three [points] right here. We’ve got about seven minutes left, we have all our timeouts. [We can] kick it down there, try to get a stop, and we’ve got enough time. If it had been fourth-and-six at the goal, then you’re going for it. My thought was to go for it, but it got to be fourth and 11. That was a little too desperate. You can probably make a case the other way, but I don’t know how better a case it would be.”
Now that I’ve heard the mindset I still don’t agree with it. One of the criticisms of Joe Flacco and the Ravens offense was that they showed no urgency. Often Flacco seemed to meander up to the line as if his team was up fourteen instead of down by the same margin. You like to see the tempo change like a No-Huddle or maybe a quick hitch or swing pass to a speed guy to try and break a play. But the Ravens seemed content to play it safe.
That thinking is also apparent in the Field Goal decision. So, you’re expecting to get a stop and get the ball back twice before time expires? There just isn’t enough time and it would have made more sense to go for it even though he is right that the percentages weren’t that high.
But what’s the difference if you lose by 13 or by 20? A loss is a loss is a loss.