"We're going to have our hands full, and we better be ready to go," John Harbaugh said of the Ravens' upcoming game against the New Orleans Saints. (Kevin Richardson/Baltimore Sun video)
The Ravens' players and coaches returned to work Monday after their latest bye week in more than a decade.
The last time the Ravens had a bye this late was Week 13 of the 2001 regular season when Brian Billick was their coach. The Ravens are 6-4 and play the New Orleans Saints (4-6) next Monday night at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome.
"It's good to have everybody back," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said Monday during his weekly news conference. "We got a good workout in. Guys are feeling re-energized, so it was a good, positive day. It's like coming back to school. Everybody was happy and excited to be back."
The Ravens don't have any major injuries to key players that are still on the active roster, but they are hoping to get rookie wide receiver Michael Campanaro (River Hill) back on the field. Campanaro has been sidelined with a pulled hamstring since the Ravens' loss to the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on Oct. 26.
"We got away and got emotionally recharged a little bit, but also physically recharged," Harbaugh said. "You don't realize how exhausted you are until you get a chance to take a deep breath and relax. The next thing you know, you're like, 'Wow, this has really been helpful. We hope to make the most of it going forward for the rest of the season."
Since Harbaugh was hired in 2008, the Ravens have only lost once after a bye week and that was last season. The Ravens are hoping this bye was particularly well-timed.
"We had more weeks under our belt, so hopefully, maybe it did feel more needed at that point," Harbaugh said. "Our guys did a good job of pushing through. I thought we played hard and well right through to the end, which is what we asked our guys to do, which is challenging when you have a bye this late, and they responded.
"They responded over the course of the week by taking care of themselves and doing the things they need to do to be professionals and not be concerned about the other things, but be concerned about getting themselves right for the stretch run."