Reporting Jerry Coleman
The most intriguing battle that is going on at the Castle (Under Armour Performance Center) is who will be backing up Ray Rice at running back. Rookie Bernard Pierce could be the most likely guy , but the competition is fierce
Head coach John Harbaugh and running backs coach Wilbert Montgomery have made it certain that the competition is still open, but it is Pierce’s job to lose. “Kind of what we expected to see,” Harbaugh said of Pierce’s debut. “He looks like a talented guy. The Ravens may have seen more by now, but he did miss practice time earlier in training camp because of a recurring hamstring injury.
Pierce showed he could run with power and had good explosion after his initial cut vs. the Lions. If out in the open field, few will catch him. He looked like the same runner the Ravens scouted a year ago at Temple, when Pierce rushed for 1,481 yards on 273 carries, leading the Ravens to make him the No. 84 overall pick in the third round. And now Pierce has his swagger back.
Both Montgomery and Harbaugh are not giving in and hinting to who will be the number two RB this season. There is no reason to. There are still two preseason games remaining and you can still evaluate young players. But Pierce appears to have that spot with rookie Bobby Rainey at number three and second year players Damien Berry and Anthony Allen at number four and number five respectively. Of all the backs, Rainey has been the most exciting in the two preseason games rushing for 39 yards on 15 carries and catching seven passes for 48 yards. As an undrafted free agent out of Western Kentucky, where he rushed for a total of 4,542 career yards on 895 total carries. He could very well be the next Ray Rice for the Ravens.
Harbaugh also addressed the Ravens first team offense and when training camp is officially over ….some think it’s over, with no more fans allowed in – not the coach
VIDEO: Harbaugh on camp
And speaking of the 1st team offense, which has 1 TD in two games . The Ravens have also been utilizing and Offense referred to as the “Sugar “offense that is not as quick as a “no huddle” version. Not hard to guess which QB Joe Flacco prefers implementing against an imposing defense
As the Ravens approach their third preseason contest not only will the starters play into the 3rd quarter , the rest of the guys will be fighting for jobs as the roster gets trimmed on Monday from 95 to 70 players …