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John Harbaugh: Justin Forsett Playing As Well As His Pro Bowl Year


As other running backs such as Terrance West and rookie Kenneth Dixon have gotten the media buzz lately, veteran Justin Forsett has flown under the radar.

The running back competition is heating up, but don't be fooled, says Head Coach John Harbaugh.

"Justin is quietly having an excellent camp," Harbaugh said Monday. "He looks to me like he did two years ago."

Two years ago, Forsett went to the Pro Bowl and was one of the best running backs in the NFL.

He ran for 1,266 yards, averaged a league-leading 5.4 yards per carry and scored eight rushing touchdowns. He also caught 44 passes for 263 yards.

If the Ravens could get that kind of production out of the now 30-year-old tailback, it would go a long way in turning around Baltimore's running game that finished 26th in the NFL in yards per game (92.4) and 24th in yards per attempt (3.9) last season.

"I see the same running back we had two years ago, in terms of his speed, his explosiveness, his vision," Harbaugh said. "He really looks good. I know there's a lot of talk about the other guys, but he's playing really well."

Forsett was the clear leader last year before breaking his arm in Week 11. He's totally healthy once again and has been a full participant throughout the offseason.

But fans have now seen a glimpse of what Buck Allen can do after he stepped in for Forsett as the starter last year. They've also read the glowing training camp reports about West and seen the potential of Dixon, who scored the second-most career rushing touchdowns of any player in NCAA history.

Like Harbaugh, Running Backs Coach Thomas Hammock warned of getting enamored with the glitzy story.

"Sometimes the media has their people that they like, their biases, which is fine," Hammock said. "Justin has had a great camp."

Hammock was asked if the starting running backs job is up for grabs this year.

"I think there's a lot of jobs up for grabs on our team," he said. "Just to single out the running backs, I don't think that's fair. … Nothing is etched in stone and they have four [preseason] games to show what they're about."

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