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Week 1 vs. NYJ
Rushing: 21 / 43 / 0
Receiving: 2 / 19 / 0 on 4 targets
Rice carried the ball 21 times in this game and despite a constant barrage of Jets defenders penetrating into the backfield and stuffing several of his runs for no gain, the shifty back kept running hard with good pad level and determination. Rice did a tremendous job in pass protection on a key 3rd and 13 play for the Ravens, allowing his QB the time to find Todd Heap for a first down.
Rice caught a screen pass and motored upfield for 15 yards, showing his burst and patience to follow his blocks. As the game progressed, Rice continued to show how patient a runner he is, hiding behind his offensive line to prevent Jets defenders from rifling into the backfield.
Against an extremely stout and disciplined defense, Rice's performance was a very solid one. He kept running hard all game long and although he didn't break off any long runs, he allowed the Ravens to maintain a balance offensively which is so important.
Week 2 vs. CIN
Rushing: 16 / 87 / 0
Receiving: 4 / 30 / 0 on 6 targets
Rice was given the 1st 3 touches of the football game. He would only get another 13 carries the rest of the way. Rice looked very good. In the middle of the 2nd quarter Baltimore went back to Rice and he was doing what I call the pop n bounce off would be tacklers. The Ravens would have been wise to stick with Rice throughout the game. He would have had a mediocre day and might have still in non PPR leagues but in leagues that were PPR, Rice managed about 15 points and owners cannot be too sore about it. Flacco turning the ball over did not help matters. Rice was 11 for 78 yds on 1st and 10 for the whole game. The Ravens need to trust in Rice some of the time and today would have been an especially good time.
Week 3 vs. CLE
Rushing: 15 / 80 / 0
Receiving: 4 / 16 / 0 on 5 targets
Rice looked as good as ever, running low, breaking tackles, and showing a good burst in the open field when he found running lanes. He kept the chains moving and the Browns defense off balance in a back-and-forth game before leaving the contest in the fourth quarter with a knee injury. The Ravens indicated that they don't think there is any ligament or cartilage damage, but only an MRI will tell the full extent of the injury.
Week 4 vs. PIT
Rushing: 8 / 20 / 0
Receiving: 1 / 9 / 0 on 1 targets
Rice clearly had more knee issues than he or the Ravens led on during the week. As noted above, McGahee started the game and had more carries despite not playing the final 1+ quarters. Once McGahee went down, the Ravens actually turned to LaRon McClain before he went down with the aforementioned injury.
One has to hope that a lack of work --- specifically the goal-line situation listed above --- is due only to Rice's knee being tender, as opposed to a lack of confidence in him. Furthermore, that same hope has to be wishful that his knee can fully recover soon. His playing in this game would lead viewers to believe that it should be OK soon, but many players have had various knee injuries linger longer than expected.
With McGahee's concussion and the seriousness of McClain's injury unknown at the time of this writing, Rice could be the only healthy option for the Ravens next week --- if he himself is even fully healthy.
Week 5 vs. DEN
Rushing: 27 / 133 / 2
Receiving: 4 / 26 / 0 on 4 targets
Ray Rice had an incredible day, rewarding his long-suffering owners with bigtime yardage and a couple touchdowns. The Broncos simply had no answer for Rice, whose combination of speed and strength completely wore down the defense. The Ravens rode the hot hand, giving him the ball 27 times, as well as using him out of the backfield as well. There wasn't any one spectacular play that stood out, but Rice was able to continually give his offense positive yards play after play. In the second half, the coaching staff made a concerted effort to put the ball in his hands more and more, as the passing game wasn't getting things done. Once that happened, the game was basically over, as Rice just tore out the hearts of the Broncos with big run after big run, culminating in his final 1 yard plunge that put the game out of reach.
Week 7 vs. BUF
Rushing: 16 / 72 / 0
Receiving: 1 / 1 / 0 on 2 targets
Rice had a decent stat line at the end of the day for the Ravens on the ground and was productive with the carries he was given. His production was hampered by Baltimore passing often to catch up to Buffalo and passes not going his way from Flacco. He showed patience and burst on an early inside run, but was contained somewhat in this game from the big play by the Buffalo defense and had to be content with modest gains inside all day.
Week 9 vs. MIA
Rushing: 22 / 83 / 0
Receiving: 7 / 97 / 0 on 8 targets
Amazing day and was torching Miami with his receptions while Miami was double covering Anquan Boldin and making sure they didn't get beat deep by him very often. Meanwhile Rice was tearing Miami apart underneath with screens and quick passes form Flacco. In PPR leagues Rice was gold this past Sunday and he looked fresh. Baltimore had a bye week last week and Rice looked ready to roll for the 2nd half of the season. Rice was running hard as well although he does seem to leave the game when they get inside the 20 or 30 yard line of their opponents quite often.
Week 10 vs. ATL
Rushing: 12 / 59 / 0
Receiving: 3 / 43 / 0 on 5 targets
Ray Rice had a very productive game. Unfortunately, the Falcons early lead meant that the Ravens had to lean on the passing game more and more as the game wore on, minimizing Rice's chances for a big statistical day. His best play came on a screen pass in the fourth quarter as the Ravens drove to take their first (and only) lead of the day. On the play, Rice caught the ball in space on the left side of the line and turned upfield. He patiently followed his blockers and broke two tackles before rumbling upfield for a much needed gain. Rice was effective as a runner as well in averaging almost 5 yards per rush. His best rush came on a play off tackle to the left in the second quarter that saw him meet initial contact at the line, turn to the outside, and drive two defenders upfield for a short gain on a play that would have stopped most backs for a loss.
Week 11 vs. CAR
Rushing: 19 / 65 / 1
Receiving: 6 / 66 / 0 on 7 targets
It was just another day at the office for Ray Rice on Sunday, as he rushed for 65 yards and a score and added another 66 yards on six receptions through the air. Rice didn't break many runs save for his 13-yard scamper (his longest on the day) and essentially chipped away for 3-4 yard gains throughout most of his 19 carries. However he continues to produce in the fantasy realm thanks to his nearly equal showing through the air week in and week out.
Week 12 vs. TB
Rushing: 20 / 85 / 0
Receiving: 7 / 47 / 0 on 8 targets
Rice was used in both the rushing attack and the passing game, and while he failed to put up huge numbers in either aspect, he finished with productive numbers. Rice averaged just over four yards per carry on the ground, but could not bust through for many big runs that have plagued the Tampa Bay defense throughout the year. However, late in the game Rice was used to close the game out, and looked impressive late in the fourth quarter when everyone including the Buccaneers knew he was getting the ball. Rice made plays in the passing game with seven receptions, a definite plus for owners in PPR leagues.
Week 13 vs. PIT
Rushing: 9 / 32 / 0
Receiving: 2 / 18 / 0 on 4 targets
Rice is the last running back to rush for 100 yards against Pittsburgh and the only to have done so in the last 45 Steelers' games. He was bottled up in this one though just like Mendenhall was. In fact, these teams didn't even combine for 100 rushing yards against each other's bruising defenses. Rice has also made impact plays in the receiving game in recent memory against Pittsburgh (his 50+ yard catch and run where he beat James Farrior one-on-one on a 4th down play last year to set up the tying points in the overtime game at Baltimore comes to mind). He was covered very well by the Steeler defense in this game though. Pittsburgh often eliminated the mismatch of Farrior on Rice by blitzing Farrior and using the much faster Lawrence Timmons to cover Rice. Rice is still an elite talent, but it seems that Baltimore prefers using their bigger backs against Pittsburgh because the best way to get yards is to simply hit the pile and lean as opposed to creating large holes and avoiding tacklers. That method is near impossible against this team.
Week 14 vs. HOU
Rushing: 19 / 54 / 0
Receiving: 8 / 66 / 0 on 8 targets
Ray Rice put together perhaps his most complete game of the season as he touched the ball 27 times for 120 total yards. Rice was an efficient pass catcher and ran well up the middle against the Texans defense. Rice did give way to Willis McGahee in the redzone, which is something that will only continue to frustrate fantasy owners waiting for Rice to have a game more akin to his 2009 campaign. Rice's best runs came to the left side of the field. For some reason, he appears more patient in waiting for blocks to develop when he takes the ball to he right. When running to the left, Rice barrels in to the line with reckless abandon, which doesn't always produce great results. That said, his best run came on a run off tackle to the left where Rice found a hole waiting, ran through it, then darted back to the right leaving three Houston defenders diving at thin air. Rice's running looks as powerful as it did in 2009 but his lack of patience in waiting for holes is limiting his big play ability. In the passing game, Rice is much more effective as the Ravens are getting the ball to him in space on screen passes near the sideline.
Week 15 vs. NO
Rushing: 31 / 153 / 1
Receiving: 5 / 80 / 1 on 7 targets
Rice had his best game of the year, and maybe as a pro. He was a force in the passing game, catching a wheel route for a TD and also busting a long gain on a screen pass to reverse any momentum the Saints had built after they pulled with four points in the third quarter. Rice got almost all of the early touches in the offense - five in a row at one point - and he ran really well between the tackles. He was patient, but strong with a good initial burst between the tackles, and he also broke a long run when he got outside on 4th and 1. Rice had another long run to counter the Saints second half momentum again when they tied the score in the fourth quarter, setting up the game-winning field goal. There's no reason that the Ravens will go away from this Rice-centered offense, and he should help a lot of teams win titles over the next two weeks.
Week 16 vs. CLE
Rushing: 25 / 92 / 0
Receiving: 1 / 0 / 0 on 2 targets
Ray Rice had a subpar day by his lofty standards but accumulated a good deal of rushing yardage and most importantly, kept the Ravens offense ticking over throughout the game. Rice found very little room at times, but used his vision and ability to get skinny in the hole to make positive yardage on almost all of his runs. Rice only had one catch in the receiving game which went for no yards. This is a Rice-centric offense now.
Week 17 vs. CIN
Rushing: 20 / 77 / 1
Receiving: 0 / 0 / 0 on 1 targets
Rice ran tough and didn't have many first half holes as the Cincy defense was swarming and gave him no holes to run through. But in the 2nd half, the Ravens offensive line wore down the Bengals, and Rice began using his quickness and agility to squirt through the openings for a few solid gains. His 7 yard touchdown in the third quarter gave the Ravens a 13 point lead and then he continued running hard in the 4th quarter, as his coaching staff curiously continued to use him, even though the Ravens have a playoff game next weekend and the game meant nothing to that end.
Week 18 vs. KC
Rushing: 17 / 57 / 0
Receiving: 5 / 42 / 1 on 6 targets
Rice was only average running the football, but as usual he was highly effective catching it out of the backfield. He had the second highest reception total of any player in the game, and hauled in what turned out to be the game-winning score out of the backfield. Rice had leaked out into the flat and was wide open. QB Joe Flacco saw this, hit him on the back shoulder, Rice turned to find nothing in front of him but the end zone, and he waltzed over the goal line untouched to provide a 10-7 lead. Rice was the one in the game late when the Ravens were grinding and trying to run out the clock, but he gave way to Willis McGahee on a short yardage run on fourth down. Unfortunately for Rice owners, McGahee ended up taking the run up the middle and not stopping until he had scampered 25 yards downfield for the score. Otherwise, Rice likely would have come back in on any ensuing rushes to try and run out the clock.
Week 19 vs. PIT
Rushing: 12 / 32 / 1
Receiving: 7 / 32 / 0 on 8 targets
Rice is by far Baltimore's most effective and dangerous offensive player. That says a lot about Rice but also highlights a lack of big playmakers throughout the rest of the offensive huddle. In the first half, when Baltimore was able to run more than 2 plays at a time without a turnover, Rice ran effectively due to the pass setting up the run. The Ravens used the run as a surprise instead of an offensive staple, and Rice's touchdown run showcased that strategy. The Steelers don't give up many rushing touchdowns --- let along ones longer than 10 yards. But Rice punched it in from 14 --- brushing off a hit from Troy Polamalu near the goal line. Rice also shook Polamalu on a critical 3rd down catch to gain 8 yards when 7 were needed to convert. Rice caught the ball about 5 yards from the line of scrimmage but avoided a fast-closing Polamalu to get the yardage necessary to continue the drive and set up a touchdown three plays later. Like Flacco though, Rice didn't play two good halves of football in this one. The Steelers had just gone 3-and-out down by 14 when Flacco hit Rice for a safe pass on 3rd-and-15. If Rice gets tackled to set up a punt, it's a mildly successful possession for Baltimore. But while making a move, Rice let the ball get away from his body and got it stripped by Ryan Clark from behind. The Steelers went on to score a touchdown just two plays later, and the comeback was on.