Ravens Confident They Won't Crack


If there were ever a time for a team to pack it in, this would be it.

The Ravens just suffered perhaps their toughest loss in a season full of heartbreakers. Head Coach John Harbauagh called it "gut-wrenching." And to make it sting even more, the NFL admitted that it really should have counted as a win.

Baltimore's playoff hopes are all but dashed, but the message from locker room is the team hasn't cracked.

"I have no idea what our record is going to be at the end of the day, but we're going to keep fighting," quarterback Joe Flacco said. "We're going to go out there, and we're going to give our best every single week."

The sentiment echoed what Harbaugh said in his Monday press conference. He has stressed all year that the Ravens have the kind of players who will stay motivated regardless of the circumstance, and he praised the group for how he expects them to respond this week.

"They're the kind of players that we want to have on our team. They're Ravens. They're fighters. They're competitors," Harbaugh said. "They're going to play hard, and they're going to play tough, and they're going to play well. And no matter what situations might rise up, we're not going to let those things get the best of us. No way. No way. We're not backing up; we're not backing down."

The expression of confidence from a 2-7 team could easily be written off as lip service, but players don't seem to be spouting off a company line. The locker room hasn't turned into a finger-pointing match after difficult losses, and players have still talked about getting hot.

"I've been on other teams where we've been in this situation, and it's easy to point fingers and guys kind of separate," veteran running back Justin Forsett said. "But we've been together, we've been fighting together and trying to get better each week."

Forsett pointed to the veterans as the reason the locker room hasn't fractured.

"We've got a lot of leaders on this team, guys that are really respected around the league like [Elvis] Dumervil, like Joe [Flacco], Chris Canty, guys like that," Forsett said. "We've got a pretty strong group here and the mindset stays the same, and our expectations are still high."

Harbaugh used a movie reference to illustrate his point. He brought up the movie "Gladiator," where Russell Crow and the other gladiators band together in the Coliseum during a fight rather than trying to survive on their own. 

"That's a visual, a little bit," Harbaugh said. "That's how you handle tough times as a team or as an organization, and that's what we will do. Nobody is going to flinch, no matter how long it takes. We thought we'd be through this by now; we're not. OK?

"No matter how long it takes, we're not going to flinch."

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