Leach opens up Ravens running attack

Leach opens up Ravens running attack
November 2, 2012, 8:00 pm
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When Vonta Leach takes on the role of a lead blocker, he can blow open holes big enough for several Ray Rices to run through simultaneously.

Leach is quick to acknowledge that he loves to dole out hits as much as he likes to run or catch the football.

But Rice reiterated a need to incorporate the All-Pro fullback in the Ravens' game-plan by giving him more touches going forward, too.

"We just have to use him more," Rice said. "We can use him on passing situations because of the great blocker that he is. I don’t want to say when he’s in the game we know we’re running the ball. We just have to find ways to use him more and more and keep him on the field as much as we can. We will try to get as many big plays as we can when he’s out there.”

Leach only has three carries for 15 yards and one touchdown. The no-huddle offense has made him almost invisible because he isn't used as much.

After the Ravens struggled for a 9-6 victory at the Kansas City Chiefs, Rice seemed peeved that the running game went largely ignored until the final drive of the fourth quarter when he was able to run out the clock. But he made a point to highlight the sparse usage of Leach then.

In the Ravens' last game before a bye last week, they started off with the run as Rice averaged 9.0 yards per carry on the first drive but rarely went back to it in an eventual 30-point loss.

Leach downplays his desire to get more touches or the need to shift away from the no-huddle this early in the season. The Ravens haven't figured out how to make all of their pieces fit, and that includes Leach.

"You have to adjust on the fly," said Leach, noting the Ravens' problem has been with improvisation especially on the road in hostile atmospheres where they're 1-2. "It almost never happens like you plan it.

"We got to figure out a balance between our run and pass and keep the defense off balance. We got a lot of weapons on this offense. I understand that."