Marty Mornhinweg says recent criticism won’t keep him from being aggressive against the Steelers.
The Ravens’ offensive coordinator heads into Sunday’s Ravens-Steelers showdown under the microscope – again. After Joe Flacco threw a red-zone interception in Week 15, with the Ravens leading by 10 points and just more than six minutes left to play, head coach John Harbaugh described the decision to pass in that situation “the all-time worst call ever.”
Harbaugh took responsibility, saying he should have vetoed the play. But it was Mornhinweg who called it.
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With the Ravens facing a virtual must-win situation in Pittsburgh, Mornhinweg says the mishap against the Eagles isn’t going to change his play calling approach.
“That is not the worst call I have ever made,” said Mornhinweg, drawing laughter, before turning serious. “I have made some really bad calls. Sometimes you get away with them, really, and the players tend to cover that thing up. That is not the first time…When you are trying to stay aggressive and score some points, it pays off, typically tenfold throughout the course of the game or a season or certainly a program. Every now and then, it backfires. When it backfires, we have to recover. We have to recover quick.”
When the Ravens beat the Steelers, 21-14, on Nov. 6, it was only Mornhinweg’s third game as offensive coordinator after replacing the fired Marc Trestman. The Ravens only scored one offensive touchdown in that game, when Mike Wallace used his speed to turn a short completion into a 95-yard catch-and-run.
It will likely take more than one offensive touchdown to beat the Steelers (9-5) on Sunday. They have won five straight and are playing their most consistent football of the season.
It’s a high-stakes situation, one that Mornhinweg is looking forward to. But except for their 38-point outburst against the Dolphins, the Ravens’ offense has been inconsistent all season. Mornhinweg hopes he can mastermind another breakout game Sunday.
“What a big opportunity we have this week in Pittsburgh,” Morhinweg said. “Our players are going to be jacked up and out of their minds for this one.
“They are already jacked up…We don’t want to peak too soon; we want to peak at the right time.”
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