Marcus Peters has defended himself against an accusation made by Jarvis Landry of the Cleveland Browns, and Head Coach John Harbaugh has Peters' back.
Landry accused Peters of spitting at him during Monday night's game in Cleveland. Peters released a statement Thursday denying the accusation,
"I didn't spit at Jarvis," Peters' statement read. "Where I come from, when you have an issue with someone, you deal with it face-to-face, man-to-man. Anyone who believes that I intentionally spit at him does not know me – plain and simple."
Harbaugh backed up his Pro Bowl cornerback on Friday after watching videotape.
"Yes, I talked to him about it, just because after it came up and became a story, or whatever," Harbaugh said. "He told me exactly what he said in the statement, and that's exactly what I saw on the field. I saw the clip of it after that; I didn't know anything about it until then.
"I talked to Jarvis after the game. I had a great conversation with Jarvis; he's a great guy, and we have great respect for him. But no way would Marcus do that. I know Marcus really well – that's not his style, anyway. If he was upset, he wouldn't be doing that. What he did was he spat in a direction, it wasn't in anybody's direction, per se. You can tell that on the clip. So, that's where I stand with it."
Ravens Prepare to Face 1,000-Yard Back in Robinson
The Jaguars' James Robinson doesn't get as much publicity as most elite running backs, partly because the Jacksonville Jaguars are 1-12.
However, the undrafted rookie from Illinois State has already topped 1,000 yards rushing (1,035) this season, third in the NFL behind Derrick Henry (1,532) and Dalvin Cook (1,352). Baltimore's defense is well aware that containing Robinson will be a key on Sunday.
"He's played really well," Harbaugh said. "He's their guy. He's their bell cow. He's carried the load really well. He's probably a Pro Bowl 'back. Very talented, low built, hard runner, has great contact balance. He can make you miss, also. A North-South guy who can bounce it [and] has good hands. He's an all-around 'back, and I think he's done a great job for them. He's definitely a huge priority for us going into this game."
Ben Powers Has Been Among NFL's Best Run Blockers Has Impressed
Ben Powers became Baltimore's starting right guard four games ago and has blossomed in that role after rarely playing as a rookie in 2019.
According to ESPN analytics that chart how long offensive linemen sustain blocks, Powers leads all NFL guards in win rate since becoming a starter.
Powers said getting more reps has helped him find a rhythm.
"It starts with more playing time that comes, the more comfortable I become," Powers said. "That helps a lot. As the games come on and the more I play, I get a lot more comfortable. Once a player becomes more comfortable, everything becomes easier."
Powers is playing the position that was handled so well by Marshal Yanda, the eight-time Pro Bowler who retired after last season while still at the peak of his game. Powers said Yanda offered plenty of advice last year, and Powers tried to soak it all in.
"I was so fortunate to have my first year with Marshal still playing here," Powers said. "There's a lot of things, techniques, things he's taught, things he told me that stick with me on a regular basis."
Harbaugh Appreciates Darren Waller's Tribute to Lorenzo Taliaferro
This has been a difficult week for coaches and players who have fond memories of former Ravens running back Lorenzo Taliaferro, who passed away Wednesday at age 28. A fourth-round pick from Coastal Carolina in 2014, Taliaferro played three seasons with the Ravens from 2014-16 and left a lasting impression on those who knew him.
Harbaugh opened his Friday videoconference with the media by speaking about the loss of Taliaferro.
"I want to express our sincere condolences to the Taliaferro family," Harbaugh said. "Lorenzo was just a great young man. He was a guy who was loved here. Humble, hard-working and had a dynamic personality. He was a guy that you just enjoyed being around every single day. He had a couple big games for us; I know everybody remembers that and remembers the Pittsburgh game. He played great for us and played special teams really well. He's just a guy who is close to our hearts, and I just wanted to wish his family all the best going forward. We're very saddened by it."
Las Vegas Raiders tight end Darren Waller, who played with Taliaferro in Baltimore, paid tribute to him after scoring a touchdown Thursday night by signaling "34" with his fingers, which was Taliaferro's jersey number.
"I also want to shoutout Darren Waller, after he scored a touchdown, for putting up the '34' symbol for Lorenzo," Harbaugh said. "I thought that was very classy, so thanks to Darren Waller for that," Harbaugh said.
Former Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith Sr., an analyst on NFL Network, shared his memories about Taliaferro as well, and said former Ravens running back Justin Forsett was hit particularly hard by the news.
There will be a moment of silence in remembrance of Taliaferro prior to Sunday's game.