High number of penalties does not worry Ravens coach John Harbaugh

The Ravens could find themselves in the top 10 of a dubious category – again.

The team has incurred 34 penalties in four games, tied for fifth in the NFL with the Seattle Seahawks. The 273 yards lost via penalties also ranks in the top 10, tied for sixth with the New York Jets.

The club has ranked in the top 10 in penalties and penalty yards in four of the last five years, but this season’s number of infractions does not seem to faze coach John Harbaugh.

“I’m not overly concerned with it,” he said Wednesday. “You’ve got to break it up a little bit. The offensive penalties have been down. Holding penalties got cleaned up. The pre-snap penalties are pretty well cleaned up, and we’ve got to keep doing that. We can’t all of a sudden come out and have a bunch of offensive penalties that set us back.”

The Ravens’ most egregious vice is offensive holding with nine penalties. Six of the nine have been linked to the offense, while the other three occurred on special teams. Flags for illegal use of the hands have been thrown four times. The team has been cited for pre-snap penalties such as delays of game, false starts, and illegal motion six times.

Although the Ravens were cited for a season-low six penalties in Sunday’s loss to the Pittsburgh Steelers, Harbaugh said what was troubling were two holding penalties on special teams. Special teams coordinator Jerry Rosburg agreed.

“Our job as special teams players is to set up our offense and defense for success, and we put our offense in a bad situation twice,” the associate head coach said Thursday. “Not only did we not help, but we hurt. That’s got to stop. The fouls we made were highly correctable fouls. The guys that made them understand that and have been coached to do it better, and we need to have better technique and we need to make better decisions in those crucial parts of the game where we can give our offense a boost.”

edward.lee@baltsun.com

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