Another Giant test for line

Another Giant test for line
December 21, 2012, 8:45 pm
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The Ravens offense could be without Pro Bowl guard Marshal Yanda again this week as he tries to rebound from an ankle injury that forced him to miss the game against the Broncos last week.

Yanda was limited in practice all week and is listed as questionable for Sunday's game against the Giants.

Facing yet another tenacious defense without perhaps its top offensive lineman could be a daunting task for a line that has taken a lot of heat lately.

The Ravens struggled mightily to run the ball against Denver, averaging 2.9 yards a carry, and Joe Flacco was sacked three times and pounded several more times by the Broncos. Flacco has also been hurt recently by strip-sacks, with rushers coming off the edge to knock the ball loose.

"It's our job to keep people off Joe," guard Jah Reid said. "We haven't been doing as good a job of that as we want to lately."

Reid was an all-conference tackle at Central Florida but has worked at both guard and tackle with the Ravens. He lost a lot of preseason time with a calf injury, but dismissed the idea that changing positions has been any reason for struggles.

"I've been playing guard long enough to hold up my own," he said, "and I'm not going to blame it on a new position or anything. I just need to play better, for myself, for the team."

This week, the Ravens face another impressive group, although the Giants' Justin Tuck is listed as questionable with a shoulder injury.

The Giants this year have 32 sacks -- the same total as the Ravens. Jason Pierre-Paul leads the way with 6.5, and Osi Umenyiora has 6. Umenyiora has a team-high nine quarterback hits.

"I see a rotation of guys that can get after the quarterback, that can cause a little havoc in there," guard Bobbie Williams said, "but also that can be blocked."

Williams, who is likely to start his second straight game at right guard if Yanda can't go, said the key is to communicate and "trust your technique out there."

Ravens coach John Harbaugh said that while the Giants' sacks numbers are down this season -- they had 48 last year --  "they’ve done a great job of pressuring the quarterback."

"They’re not a big blitzing team, but they are a big matchup team," he said. "They move all their guys around. You’ll see any one of their rushers on any one of your linemen based on their game plan. So, all of our guys are going to have to be prepared, really, for every guy and all those moves.”