Originally posted on Ravens Football Machine  |  Last updated 9/30/12

INDIANAPOLIS - JANUARY 16: Head coach John Harbaugh of the Baltimore Ravens looks on from the sideline in the second quarter against the Indianapolis Colts in the AFC Divisional Playoff Game at Lucas Oli Stadium on January 16, 2010 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

The Ravens hit the quarter-pole of the regular 2012 season after a brutal stretch of 4 games in 17 days, and are sitting at 3-1...

"I am really proud of our coaches and our players for what they accomplished in the last 18 days," Head Coach John Harbaugh said Friday.

The Ravens pulled off victories over division rivals Cincinnati and Cleveland, and the defending AFC champion New England Patriots. Their one loss came to the Philadelphia Eagles by one point in a hostile road environment.

WR Anquan Boldin has emerged as the go-to possesion receiver for the Ravens when things get tough...

Garrett Downing of the Ravens PR staff gets to go inside the locker room, and he wrote a nice piece about how veteran guard Marshal Yanda had coined the phrase "Embrace the Grind" way back in training camp when the players first realized how condensed a schedule they faced for September.

Yanda reportedly challenged his teammates with that attitude after a practice in the mid-summer heat. The team had "Embrace the Grind" t-shirts printed, and Harbaugh referenced Yanda's words when he reflected on the accomplishment of his team through the first four games.

"What we've done through the first four weeks of the season, it was a grind," Harbaugh said. "Football is a grind a little bit anyway. This was a real grind."

Part of the challenge through the first month was having three night games. The Ravens are scheduled to play only one more night game the rest of the season, coming in Week 11 in Pittsburgh.

"Playing in primetime has its benefits, and fortunately for the Ravens all of their primetime matchups were at M&T Bank Stadium where a raucous crowd could make a difference", wrote Downing. "The difficulty, however, was that playing night games gave the Ravens less time each week to prepare for their upcoming opponents."

"You have to play in primetime, which are high-intensity games," Harbaugh said. "You don't get much rest, and you have to bounce back. We had short weeks twice coming off those games, and then to maintain that intensity in the building in terms of rehab, in terms of just getting your rest, in terms of getting in the weight room and taking care of business, in terms of the preparation that it takes, both on the field and in the classroom, our guys deserve a lot of credit for it."

The Ravens now get to enjoy the benefits of surviving a Thursday night game, as the players have the weekend off before returning to work Monday to begin preparations for the Kansas City Chiefs.

"We weren't perfect by any stretch. There are plenty of blemishes that we need to work on in all three phases," Harbaugh said. "They are up for a well-deserved rest right now, and we'll start building again on Monday."

"It wasn't exactly the way we wanted it, but it's still a good way to come out," linebacker Jameel McClain said. "We wanted to be 4-0, and we thought we should have beaten the Eagles. But now it's time to prepare for the next quarter of the season."

I can think of a lot of teams that would want 3-1 right now. The New Orleans Saints come to mind...

Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

DeMarco Murray unhappy with role in Eagles' offense

George Karl apologized to DeMarcus Cousins for trade comment

Jason Whitlock, ESPN part ways again

Devonta Freeman is scoring touchdowns at a historic rate

Joe Philbin not worried about being fired

NFL deciding how to share random PSI data during season


Report: LeSean McCoy has tear in hamstring

Report: Jay Cutler expected to play hurt against Raiders

Report: Marshawn Lynch not likely to play against Lions

WATCH: Adrien Broner uses Bruce Jenner zinger after win

ESPN explains reason for Dabo Swinney interview error

Brian Kelly: Kizer made right call on 2-point play

Jay Feely shares thoughts on why NFL kickers are struggling

Female reporters blocked from entering NFL locker room

Pierre Garcon makes awesome game-winning TD catch

WATCH: Mario Williams obliterates Rashad Jennings

WATCH: Ed Dickson scores TD on crazy fumble recovery

WATCH: Nelson Agholor makes incredible one-handed catch

London PR guy has hilarious reaction to angry Suh

Former LSU staffer had championship rings stolen from home

Giants LB Devon Kennard makes incredible interception

Andrew Bogut lost 22 pounds thanks to sugar documentary

Ohio State fans rip Cardale Jones on Twitter despite victory

LeBron has message for Tristan Thompson on Instagram

Rangers fire social media staffer over Charlie Strong tweet

NFL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Philbin not worried about job status

London PR guy trolls Suh

10 takeaways from Week 5 of the college football season

Rick Pitino and the shadows that never leave

Chad Johnson ... Steelers kicker?

Flacco deserves more from the Ravens

Time for Neymar's Barcelona

Seth Rollins, WWE depth, Divas and winning

Madison Keys and the future of women’s tennis

Most underrated games in NFL Week 4

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker