Harbaugh defends Ravens' blocking scheme

Head coach John Harbaugh took offense to teams saying the Ravens play dirty.



Pittsburgh nose tackle Casey Hampton and several other Steelers complained that the Ravens used dangerous chop blocks during the Ravens' 35-7 season-opening win. That didn't sit well with Harbaugh.

“The blocking scheme that’s come up this week is one that almost every team in the National Football League runs,” Harbaugh told reporters on Friday. “We’ve been running it for years. Some teams do it better than other teams. The block is absolutely legal. It’s 100 percent legal, and it’s 100 percent ethical, and there is no danger whatsoever in the way the block is being executed because it’s in front.”

The Titans, who play the Ravens on Sunday, apparently won't stand for those blocking tactics.

“You’ve got to make sure you’re doing something that’s hopefully going to hurt them, too," Titans defensive coordinator Jerry Gray told The Tennessean. "You can’t just be the recipient of everything. You’ve got to start doing something that’s going to get you back on track and hopefully they’ll tone that stuff down when you do something else.”

Earlier in the week, Tennessee running back Chris Johnson accused the Ravens of trying to hurt him in a playoff game three years ago.

The Ravens weren't called for any illegal blocks against the Steelers, and they weren't flagged for any personal fouls in tackling Johnson in the 2008 postseason game. Still, it seems like the Ravens are gaining a reputation for being dirty birds.