Vonta Leach limited to 14 plays against Texans

SportsFootballBaltimore RavensVonta LeachHouston TexansJohn HarbaughBernard Pierce

As Ravens offensive coordinator Cam Cameron abandoned the running game while the team fell behind quickly in a 43-13 defeat to the Houston Texans, All-Pro fullback Vonta Leach disappeared, too.

Leach was limited to a season-low 14 snaps, including just six running plays Sunday at Reliant Stadium.

Leach has averaged 24 plays per game this season.

Playing against his old team Sunday, arguably the most devastating lead blocker in the game was primarily tethered to the bench.

"We want to use him more than that, absolutely," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. "He is handling it like a pro. He and I had a talk on the plane about it. He was great, but he wants to play, and he knows he can help us. He wants to be out there. You can’t really guarantee that you’re going to do this in one game and that in another game, but on average, Vonta Leach has got to play more than that.

"There are going to be some games where maybe he doesn’t play as much. I’m not defending what we decided to do in that game or what we didn’t decide to do, it didn’t work. We tried to get back in the game, and it didn’t work. But, yes, Vonta is a big part of what we’re doing.”

Pro Bowl running back Ray Rice rushed for 27 yards on three carries during the Ravens' opening drive, but finished with nine carries for 42 yards as Baltimore rushed for 55 yards on 12 carries for the game.

Rookie backup running back Bernard Pierce didn't have a single carry against the Texans.

"We could have stayed with the run a little more patiently," Harbaugh said. "Once they got the tip-ball interception, we felt like we needed to try to get back in that thing a little bit more quickly because of the type of team they are.

"We probably all say we could have been a little more patient with the run, whether it's Ray Rice or Bernard Pierce or whoever it was. We want to get the ball in all of our playmakers' hands. We probably didn't do that like we wanted to, whether it's screens or handing it off to Ray or pushing it downfield to Anquan Boldin or whatever."

awilson@baltsun.com

 

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