Rice is AFC Player of the Week

Rice is AFC Player of the Week
November 28, 2012, 1:30 pm
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(Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE)

Hey Diddle, Diddle, Ray Rice is Player of the Week.

Ravens running back Ray Rice has been named the AFC’s Offensive Player of the Week after his effort – especially on that fourth-and-29 miracle – in the Ravens’ 16-13 win at San Diego last week.

Rice finished the game with 22 carries for 97 yards and eight catches for 67 yards, but the play that everyone continues to talk about is his fourth-and-29 conversion that ultimately led to a game-tying field goal at the end of regulation – and a nickname that is likely to live in Ravens lore.

Facing fourth-and-a-mile (well, 29 yards), Flacco looked deep, then checked down to Rice, who caught the ball at the Ravens' 38-yard line -- about 28 yards short of the first down. He broke across midfield, outran three Chargers in pursuit, got a huge block from Anquan Boldin and then fought off two other Chargers before falling at the Chargers 34 -- for a gain of 29. 

“On fourth-and-29 there’s no magical call,” Rice said at his weekly media session Wednesday. “We didn’t come up with a play where we’re going to start lateraling the ball. It was a base play call. … Once (Joe Flacco) threw it to me, I had to do my best to make a play. Obviously I had help with Anquan’s block and everything. It was only right to name it, ‘Hey Diddle Diddle, Ray Rice up the Middle, with a little bit of slash and dash.”

Speaking on Monday, coach John Harbaugh called it ““the greatest play I’ve ever seen or been a part of.”

This is the fourth AFC Offensive Player of the Week for Rice.

Rice on Wednesday also said the play ranks among the most memorable plays of his career, right up there with the 83-yard touchdown run at New England in the 2009 playoffs. But he added that its significance won’t be fully known until the season is over.

“It’s one of those moments when you realize you did something special,” Rice said. “Obviously, after the season, it will be more special if we went ahead and did what we have to do.”