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Ravage!!!
09-12-2008, 06:03 PM
McGahee falling out of the running

By Jamison Hensley Ravens beat
September 12, 2008


In the Ravens' new running scheme, the joke could end up being on Willis McGahee.

Criticized for not showing enough commitment to the Ravens, McGahee might have to learn about the concept of "team" the hard way - as in, a running-back-by-committee situation.

From all indications, it seems as if McGahee, the Ravens' featured back last season, will have to split time with two upstarts, Ray Rice and Le'Ron McClain.

McGahee is expected to make his first appearance against the Houston Texans on Monday after missing the entire preseason with a knee injury. He said he could handle his usual 20 to 25 carries.

"I want a full workload, but that's something the coaches have to figure out," McGahee said.

A "full workload" doesn't appear to be in the Ravens' game plan. It's uncertain whether McGahee will even start.

"As of today, he's got a role in this game," offensive coordinator Cam Cameron said yesterday. "We ultimately aren't going to know until he's practiced through the end of the week."

McGahee was active and dressed in full uniform Sunday, but the Ravens didn't put him on the field for one play. Coach John Harbaugh explained that the Ravens wanted to be cautious with McGahee and his knee.

But one could read an underlying message from Sunday: The Ravens don't need McGahee to establish a dominant running attack.

The Ravens have gone out of their way to embrace McGahee. The coaching staff has repeatedly talked about how McGahee is a "special back" and how he could see increased touches as an every-down back.

McGahee reciprocated by falling into the same bad habits that forced him out of Buffalo.

He was the only offensive starter not to show for a majority of the voluntary minicamps this offseason. He reported to training camp in not-so-stellar shape. And he was one of the last to arrive to the first practice of training camp.

It'll be interesting to see how the Ravens handle McGahee in the future. He is signed through 2013, but only the next two seasons are manageable salaries ($605,000 this season and $620,000 in 2009).

In the short term, it's not about earning more money. It's about earning more playing time.

"If we have a group of guys that we know that can help us win," Cameron said, "we'll play them all."

The Houston Texans, who gave up 183 rushing yards to the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday, have ranked in the bottom half of the NFL in run defense for four of the past five seasons:
Year Rank Yards per game TDs
2003 31st 148.1 15
2004 13th 115.2 4
2005 32nd 143.9 21
2006 20th 122.2 16
2007 19th 114.1 15

Peerless
09-12-2008, 06:05 PM
He was the only offensive starter not to show for a majority of the voluntary minicamps this offseason. He reported to training camp in not-so-stellar shape. And he was one of the last to arrive to the first practice of training camp.

What commitment.... :clap:

garzjoe
09-12-2008, 07:08 PM
I hope Ray Rice emerges with the majority of the touches, I went out on a whim an drafted him for one of my Fantasy leagues. Not my starter but a serviceable 3rd RB for bye week.

Thx,
Joe

GridironChamp
09-13-2008, 09:41 AM
I never understood why teams dont play a talent like McGahee as much as
possible. :confused:

rockrules40
09-13-2008, 02:44 PM
Rice is my #5 RB so if he gets the majority of the carries I might be able to trade Steven Jackson, Brandon Jacobs, Michael Turner, or Chris Johnson for a WR or 2.




...900th post...

Ravage!!!
09-13-2008, 02:55 PM
I never understood why teams dont play a talent like McGahee as much as
possible. :confused:

Its becoming apparent huh?