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John Harbaugh says one reason Ravens have gone no-huddle is because of Patriots

09.19.12 at 7:49 pm ET
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Bill Belichick and John Harbaugh will meet again on Sunday night. (AP)

FOXBORO — Coach John Harbaugh acknowledged Wednesday that the Ravens are running more no-huddle than they have in years past, adding that one of the reasons they’ve utilized it so much in 2012 is because they’ve seen the success that the Patriots have had with it in the past.

“We’ve seen the success a lot of teams have had with it and we’ve had to defend it,” Harbaugh said on a conference call with reporters on Wednesday. “We’ve always had it as part of what we’re doing. There were a lot of factors that came together to move us in that direction, but every week is different. Every game plan is different. I would say a lot of what the Patriots have done over the years has been something that’s positively influenced us in that direction.”

Harbaugh, who estimated that Baltimore’s no-huddle was “more successful in the first game than the second game probably, more successful in the first half of the first half of the last game than the second half,” said it wasn’t really hard to introduce it this season.

“Every year it’s always a process of going from the ground up,” he said, “no matter if it’s something you’ve been doing for years or if it’s something you’re doing more of like we are with that or if it’s something you introduce as new. Every year kind of ends up being like a startup and you have to build everything from the foundation up.”

Following are some of the highlights from the rest of his Q&A with the media on Wednesday.

Looking at the Patriots through the first two games, what stands out to you that is different from when you prepared to face them in last year’s AFC championship game?

“Oh, not much. As far as their style and everything, it’s the same team. They’re tremendously great. That’s the thing now; I think they’ve improved even over last year’s team, even as a good as they were last year, a Super Bowl team. They were AFC champions. They’ve done a great job with the draft, bolstering the team. They brought a few guys in and improved. They’ve done it again.”

How far back does your relationship with Bill Belichick go?

“Well, he may not remember this, but originally, probably around ’91, ’92, somewhere around there he was coaching the Browns and he came to the University of Cincinnati when I was a young coach there and he was scouting some of our players. We had a chance to sit down and talk about those guys. He and Scott O’Brien were really close and Scott was a mentor for me coming up early on there and always has been, actually. So we had that connection and that’s where I first met him. Obviously I was in awe of the man at the time and that probably hasn’t changed too much.”

What has James Ihedigbo brought to your team?

“He’s helped us. We had a little bit of a need there at safety and he’s a really good special teams player. He fits our style just like he fits the Patriots style. I think we’re both similar defensively in terms of being determined to be very physical and determined to be very disciplined. We like smart players so he fits our mold.”

What is the status of that situation at this time concerning Bernard Pollard’s availability for Sunday?

“We’ll just have to wait and see. I’m not sure what that is right now. We’ll have to get through today and see where we’re at. At the end of the day we’ll have a category for him in terms of how much he practices.”

What has stood out to you on Chandler Jones?

“I’m impressed with how well he’s been coached and how disciplined he is and the attention to detail he plays with for a rookie. He’s obviously tremendously gifted, but they’ve done a great job with bringing him along so quickly.”

What would be an example of the attention to detail?

“I’d say the way he plays his run sets. His consistency with that has been excellent.”

Along those same lines, what does Arthur Jones bring to your team?

“Oh, OK, the Art Jones/Chandler Jones question. I like that [laughs]. First of all, Art’s a great guy and this is a great family – credit to their parents. What they’ve accomplished, you have probably the top fighter in the world. You have two NFL football players both playing at an incredibly high level with great college careers and they’re just great people. Art’s a hard worker, he’s a happy guy. He always has a smile on his face, a pleasure to be around. All those things that make for success in life, Art has them. We met Chandler during the draft and he was the same. And we met Jon [Jones], he’s been to a few of our games and he’s the same. It’s really a neat, neat family.”

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