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RB Bernard Pierce - Baltimore Ravens

6-0, 218Born: 5-10-1991College: TempleDrafted: Round 3

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Photo: Geoff Burke, US Presswire

Preseason player page

Pierce suffered a concussion in the third preseason game in late August. ***UPDATE - Pierce was able to practice fully before the Ravens Week 1 game. He began the game as the starter.

News you need to know

From Mark Wimer's Monday injury report (Sun Sep 28): Pierce was active but didn't play on Sunday after being listed as probable to play on Friday (thigh injury). Pierce was reportedly held out for 'precautionary reasons' according to the coaching staff after the game.

From the upgrade/downgrade report (Mon Sep 29): The Ravens are saying Pierce was rested as a precaution, but he has been outplayed by Justin Forsett and Lorenzo Taliaferro and isn't worth a spot in typical redraft leagues.

General News (Wed Oct 1): practiced fully on Wednesday.

Week 5: at Indianapolis Colts

Mark and Joe say: Neutral matchup. The Ravens are using a two-headed committee right now, with Bernard Pierce apparently marginalized in favor of Justin Forsett (44/255/2 rushing with 19 targets for 16/63/0 receiving so far this year) and Lorenzo Taliaferro (33/149/2 rushing with one target for zero receptions) who are forming a sort of Lightning-and-Thunder backfield for the Ravens. Last week, Pierce was active but didn't play vs. Carolina, while Forsett posted 14/66/1 rushing and 3/31/0 receiving, with Taliaferro going 15/58/1 rushing vs. the Panthers. To date, the Ravens are ranked ninth in the NFL with 134.5 yards rushing per game, with four rushing scores to their credit. The Colts' rush D is in the middle 1/3 of the league, currently averaging 104.8 yards allowed per game, with four rushing scores given out to date. They have allowed 17 points to their last two opponents, with 16/85/1 allotted to the Titans and 20/105/0 given up to the Jaguars two weeks ago. On balance this looks like a fairly even matchup between the home-field Colts and the visiting Ravens.

Recent Stats and Projections

WEEKOPPRSHYDTDTARGRECYDTDFumL
1 vs CIN 6 14 0 0 0 0 0 1
2 vs PIT 22 96 0 2 1 7 0 0
5 at IND PROJ-Dodds 6 * * 0 * * *
5 at IND PROJ-Tremblay 7 * * 0 * * *
5 at IND PROJ-Bloom 2 * * 0 * * *

Recent Game Summaries

2014 Week 2 vs PIT (22 / 96 / 0 rush, 2 / 1 / 7 / 0 rec)

Bernard Pierce is simply an average running back. He lacks special vision, quickness, power, and speed. He consistently gets less than what's blocked for him but flashes glimpses of being the no nonsense downhill runner he could be. Too often the offensive line got good initial push only to have Pierce plow head first into his blockers for minimal gain. Pierce got the majority of the short yardage carries but the Ravens weren't afraid to Forsett in near the goal line. No running back gets caught from behind trying to break into the second level by slow fat guys more than Bernard Pierce. He had one such carry to open the second drive for a nice gain but it's a reminder that well blocked plays sometimes feel wasted on Pierce. Pierce was given at least 5 carries inside the 5 yard line and couldn't convert any of them. Towards the end of the game the Ravens began dominating the line of scrimmage. Pierce was able to gain the edge multiple times and pick up nice chunks of yardage to boost his yards per carry. With goal line opportunities and ample carries Pierce should remain a solid running back 2 in fantasy.

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Latest News

Ravens | Justin Forsett earning his keep (Mon Sep 29, 10:32 AM) - Baltimore Ravens RB Justin Forsett has done everything he can to own the starting running back job, in the opinion of beat writer Jamison Hensley. 'He's making yards after the hit on his own,' head coach John Harbaugh said. 'That's kind of how you measure a back.'

Our View: We love the way that Forsett runs the ball. He is not the biggest back, but he's willing between the tackles. Forsett can slice and choose where he wants to go in traffic, and he has a quick burst when there's a rushing lane. He's not going anywhere, and will remain the top option for the Ravens at running back. Rookie Lorenzo Taliaferro and Bernard Pierce will work as reserve runners.
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Ravens | Bernard Pierce sits as precaution (Sun Sep 28, 09:44 PM) - Baltimore Ravens RB Bernard Pierce (thigh) was active in Week 4 against the Carolina Panthers, but he said Sunday, Sept. 28, that he did not play as a 'precaution.'

Our View: It's hard to know if this is a cover for giving Lorenzo Taliaferro another chance to impress before re-installing Pierce, or honest prudence on the Ravens part. Pierce hasn't really impressed in a while anyway, so Taliaferro is probably the back to own of the two.
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Ravens | Two RBs split carries in win (Sun Sep 28, 09:36 PM) - Baltimore Ravens RBs Justin Forsett and Lorenzo Taliaferro nearly split the carries in half in Week 4 against the Carolina Panthers with RB Bernard Pierce (thigh) held out as a precaution. Forsett carried 14 times for 66 yards and a touchdown, while the rookie Taliaferro had 15 carries for 58 yards and a score. Forsett also added three grabs for 31 yards.

Our View: Forsett got most of the early work and Taliaferro dominated touches as the game went on. Forsett is the safer weekly play, especially in PPR leagues, and Taliaferro should hold off Pierce if the coaches are being rational. Next week against the Colts brings a vulnerable defense for the Ravens offense to stay hot.
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Ravens | Ravens RB situation muddled (Fri Sep 26, 08:07 PM) - Baltimore Ravens RBs Bernard Pierce, Justin Forsett and Lorenzo Taliaferro have each led the team in rushing in a game this season. The Ravens are the only team to have a back with at least 90 rushing yards, giving them the eighth-ranked rushing attack despite having no one in the Top 12 among leading individual rushers. The backs each say they are uncertain who will get the ball in Week 4 against the Carolina Panthers, and offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak only indicated Friday, Sept. 26, that all three will play. 'They're all going to play,' Kubiak said. 'We're going to keep a fresh guy on the field - that's what we're going to go - and if we feel like one guy has the hot hand, so to speak, then obviously he's going to go back out. I want them all to prepare as if they're starting.'

Our View: None of these guys are worth starting as more than a what the heck flex until one emerges, and that may not happen.
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Ravens | Bernard Pierce expected to play (Fri Sep 26, 02:57 PM) - Baltimore Ravens RB Bernard Pierce (thigh) fully participated in practice Friday, Sept. 26, and is listed as probable for Week 4.

Our View: The big question is whether Pierce goes back to being a full-fledged lead back, or if Lorenzo Taliaferro's Week 3 performance forces a three-way committee, leaving no Ravens back with considerable fantasy value.
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More News

Baltimore Ravens Team Links

Depth Chart      Season Stats      Targets      Red Zone      Game Logs

Staff Dynasty Rankings

RB Dynasty - 37, 28, 33, 39, 53

Footballguys Articles

Preseason Roundtable #1
  FBG Staff - June 4
AFC Roster Check Pre-Free Agency
  Jeff Tefertiller - March 3
The Gut Check No.293-A Trip to the Thrift Store
  Matt Waldman - May 20
Offensive Skill Position Injury Review May 21, 2014
  Mark Wimer - May 21
Offensive Skill Position Injury Review June 8, 2014
  Mark Wimer - June 8
The Docket: Week 2
  Ari Ingel - September 9
Under The Microscope: Ravens RB Lorenzo Taliaferro
  Matt Waldman - September 8
Draft Kings Bargain Buys
  Heath Cummings - September 7
Using Running Back Tiers as a Tool for Waiting on the Position
  Matt Harmon - August 14
The Gut Check No.307: Upside Down Draft Update
  Matt Waldman - August 11

Articles from around the web

Gary Kubiak could revive Ravens running game
  Marcas Grant - March 28
Fantasy value of 2014 draft picks
  Christopher Harris - May 11
Post-Draft Dynasty Ranks - RB
  Mike Clay - May 21
Fantasy football backfield situations by team
  Michael Fabiano - May 27
Learning how to find fantasy football sleepers could make your season
  David Gonos - May 29
2014 fantasy draft bargains
  Michael Fabiano - May 29
Training Room: Updates on Julio, Wayne, Locker, CJ1K & Pierce
  Russell Manalastas - June 18
AFC Team-By-Team OTA Notes
  Adam Levitan - June 22
The State of the Baltimore Backfield: Should We Expect Much From Ravens Running Backs?
  Joe Redemann - August 6
RB Primer: Gerhart, others could help reestablish position's superiority
  Brad Evans - July 30

Schedule

5@ Indianapolis Colts
6@ Tampa Bay Buccaneers
7vs Atlanta Falcons
8@ Cincinnati Bengals
9@ Pittsburgh Steelers
10vs Tennessee Titans
11--- BYE WEEK ---
12@ New Orleans Saints
13vs San Diego Chargers
14@ Miami Dolphins
15vs Jacksonville Jaguars
16@ Houston Texans
17vs Cleveland Browns