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Harbaugh: 'We have everything we need'


Harbaugh: 'We have everything we need'

Like a real leader, Ravens coach John Harbaugh fell on the sword for his team's terrible performance Monday.

And there could be plenty of shifts and changes on the way in terms of personnel and the style of play.

"As far as responsibility for that game," Harbaugh said in reference to the 43-13 drubbing at the hands of the Houston Texans on Sunday, "to me it's on me. We were not in position to win that game. … We obviously weren't ready to handle their scheme, their intensity, the crowd."

There was a record audience at Reliant Stadium to witness the Texans (6-1), who now have the best record in the AFC, beat the Ravens for the first time in franchise history.

The defense almost allowed 200-plus yards rushing for the third week in a row -- 181 to be exact -- and gave up the most points since Harbaugh became coach in 2008.

It was their first game without linebacker Ray Lewis and cornerback Lardarius Webb, both of whom went down with season-ending injuries a week ago.

The trade deadline looms at the end of the month. The Ravens are bringing linebacker Sergio Kindle, a 2010 second-round draft pick who was cut last week to make room for the return of Terrell Suggs, back on the practice squad.

"We have everything we need. We have all the players we need and we have all the scheme we need," Harbaugh said. "Now, what we have to do is organize it in a way that gives our players a chance to play their fastest and their best under pressure, on the road, against good teams and at home."

After practice Tuesday, the team will have the rest of the week off heading into a bye. Despite being dinged up, the Ravens should be relatively healthy going into the Nov. 4 game at the Cleveland Browns.

Tackle Bryant McKinnie, who filled in briefly for Kelechi Osemele when he went down with a knee and ankle injury, still is bothered by a hip flexor strain. Osemele had no structural damage and should be fine.

In playing his first game of the season, Suggs was on the field for 44 snaps and had no setbacks. Safety Ed Reed hurt his ribs but he'll be OK, too.

"We need to rest. We need the recovery," Harbaugh said. "We're going to heal up a little bit."

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Dominant defense earns Ravens' Za'Darius Smith AFC Defensive Player of the Week honors

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Dominant defense earns Ravens' Za'Darius Smith AFC Defensive Player of the Week honors

The defensive performance on display by the Baltimore Ravens Sunday against the Tennessee Titans in a 21-0 shutout win was flat out historic. So historic that it's earned linebacker Za'Darius Smith AFC Defensive Player of the Week honors.

A franchise-record 11 sacks were laid on quarterback Marcus Mariota during the Week 6 matchup, with Smith leading the way with three of them.   

So far this season the 26-year-old has 20 combined tackles, 5.5 sacks, and one forced fumble. As someone who is in the final year of his rookie NFL contract, he's certainly proving he is worthy of getting paid this offseason. 

"It feels great, man. It's big," Smith said of the honor during media availability Wednesday. "I know when I first found out I called my mom and she was already looking at it. But I called her and she was trying to congratulate me and was like 'who would've ever thought the guy that played one year of high school football would be where he at now and making so many goals.'"

But earning AFC Defensive Player of the Week isn't the only goal Smith has in mind. His performance through the first six weeks and assisting the No. 1 ranked scoring defense is just a stepping stone to the ultimate honor.

"I was telling her, 'Ma you know this is a good self-goal but my main goal is to get us to the Super Bowl.'" 

The road to the Super Bowl for Smith and the Ravens continues this Sunday vs. Drew Brees and the Saints. 


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Peter King awards two Ravens with weekly honors for defensive performance vs.Titans

Peter King awards two Ravens with weekly honors for defensive performance vs.Titans

The Baltimore Ravens' Week 6 dominate performance over the Tennessee Titans is gaining national attention. 

A historic game that displayed the offense and defense firing on all cylinders, it's hard to pinpoint who had the biggest impact. 

So in his latest edition of Football Morning in America, NBC Sports' Peter King awarded not one, but two Ravens with weekly honors.


Against the Titans, Smith led the Ravens defense with three sacks and five tackles in their historic 11-sack game. On of three Defensive Players of the Week, King explained why Smith's performance stood out.

In the most dominant defensive performance of this ultra-offensive season, the Ravens shut out Tennessee 21-0 and had 11 sacks. Another one of GM Ozzie Newsome’s draft gifts that keeps on giving, Smith (2015, round four, Kentucky) contributed three sacks of Marcus Mariota and five tackles in a virtuoso game. Net passing yards for Mariota: 51.

Smith, who's entering the final year of his rookie NFL contract, has shown over six games he deserves to get paid in the offseason. So far this season the 26-year-old has 20 combined tackles, 5.5 sacks and one forced fumble. 

COACH OF THE WEEK: Don "Wink" Martindale

In his first season as defensive coordinator, Don "Wink" Martindale has seamlessly made the transition from linebackers coach to leading the NFL's No. 1 scoring defense (12.8). But what impressed King the most from the 21-0 shutout was how Martindale's squad got to Mariota from every direction. 

When a unit records more sacks (11) than completions allowed (10), the leader gets an award. Those are the rules. Martindale’s pass rushers got to Marcus Mariota every possible way—up the middle, around the edges, in the pocket, on bootlegs, you name it. The total set a new franchise record and was one short of the single-game NFL mark of 12. And it came with a familiar face watching: Titans defensive coordinator Dean Pees used to hold the same position in Baltimore. Shout out to the Ravens social media team for renaming the account RavenSSSSSSSSSSS, one ‘S’ for each sack.

This Ravens defense, who has always been known for its dominance, is ranked first in points allowed (12.8), first in yards allowed (270.8), second in passing yards allowed (188.0) and third in rushing yards allowed (82.8) heading into Week 7. In addition, they have yet to surrender a second half touchdown all season. Trusting of the talent this roster holds, the respect "Wink" has for his players is equally reciprocated. 

"It was really emotional when they told us we had 11 sacks," linebacker Patrick Onwuasor said postgame. "We just went out there and we were like, ‘We have to get Coach Wink . We have to put the Gatorade on him.’ So, we tried to turn him around so he couldn’t see it coming, and we had to get him real good."

Martindale will now face the No. 1 scoring offense in the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.