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Ravens 'Frustrated' With Run Game

Posted Oct 14, 2013

After six weeks and a switch at left tackle, the Ravens are still looking for their ground game.

It’s been six weeks and the Ravens made an unprecedented trade for left tackle Eugene Monroe.

Yet after Sunday’s 19-17 loss, they are still trying to find their running attack.

It’s turned into a broken record. Baltimore struggled to move the ball on first and second down on the ground. The Ravens eventually had to rely on the passing game because of the run game’s ineffectiveness.

The Ravens finished with 47 rushing yards on 22 attempts, an average of just 2.1 yards per carry, in their 19-17 loss to Green Bay.

Baltimore entered the game averaging 2.8 yards per carry, the second-worst mark in the NFL only ahead of Jacksonville. After Sunday, the Ravens fell into a tie in the cellar at 2.7.

“We would love to run the ball better. It’s not something that you plan on – going out there and messing up. The run game has to get better,” running back Ray Rice said.

“I guess I’d use the words ‘a little frustrated.’”

The lack of success in the run game is affecting the entire offense, and specifically putting Baltimore in too many third-and-long situations.

In the first half, the Ravens ran nine times on first down. Baltimore gained just 10 yards on those carries, and six came on a scramble by quarterback Joe Flacco. Two runs went for negative yardage and two for no gains.

“We’re just not getting the yardage and the creases that we need right now in that [running game] part, and we’re kind of unsuccessful at a lot of other things we do just because of that,” Flacco said.

“We’re getting put in bad situations and kind of fighting an uphill battle every single drive, and when you do that, like I said, everything slows down.”

Green Bay has a big and experienced defensive line. Nose tackle Ryan Pickett and defensive ends B.J. Raji and C.J. Wilson are all over 300 pounds. Baltimore’s offensive line had trouble budging them enough to create any space.

But left guard Kelechi Osemele, who returned to play the full game after missing much of last week’s contest in Miami with back spasms, said the Packers weren’t doing anything special that gave the Ravens problems.

“We’ve got to do a better job of giving our coaches and running backs more confidence in us,” Osemele said. “They don’t really have too much confidence in us right now. We’ve got to start faster. If we start fast, we can open up the run game and change up our runs plays and run the ball more.”

The Ravens also hurt themselves with penalties, which set their run game back too. Pro Bowl right guard Marshal Yanda was flagged for having hands to the face and a false start.

Yanda was asked if there are any trends to why the Ravens aren’t having success running the football.

“No, we just need to get better,” Yanda said. “Everybody is frustrated. It stinks and it’s tough, but we’ve got the guys to do it. When we get it going it’s electric, it’s exciting. We just have to put together more drives and make more plays and just keep fighting.”

Monroe for the most part did well in his first game as a Raven, besides allowing one sack-strip that led to a Green Bay field goal. But his addition didn’t all-of-a-sudden make the run game come together.

“Credit to Green Bay for doing a good job, playing solid defense, stopping the run,” Monroe said. “Our run game will go; we have everyone that will give us the ability to run it well, we’ve just got to show up on game day and execute.”

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