Denver Broncos coach Vic Fangio slammed the Ravens as an organization for which “player safety is secondary” a day after John Harbaugh opted to run on the last play of a 23-7 win to preserve his team’s streak of 100-yard rushing performances.
Harbaugh responded at his Monday news conference: “I promise you, I’m not going to give that insult one second thought. What’s meaningful to us might not be meaningful to them. Their concerns are definitely not our concerns. We didn’t expect to get the ball back, but we decided that if we got the ball back, we were going to try to get the yards.”
“I thought we were on good terms,” he said of Fangio, who worked for him as a defensive assistant in 2008 and 2009. “We had a nice chat before the game.”
Fangio had nothing nice to say about his former boss during his day-after news conference on Monday.
“I have 37 years in pro ball. I’ve never seen anything like that,” he said when asked about the Ravens’ final run. “But it was to be expected, and we expected it.”
Asked why he expected it, he said: “Because I just know how they operate. That’s just their mode of operation there.”
After the game, Harbaugh said it was “100% my call” to go for a run to extend the team’s streak of 100-yard games to 43, tying a record set by the Pittsburgh Steelers from 1974 to 1977. Quarterback Lamar Jackson ran a 5-yard keeper to move the Ravens from 97 yards for the day to 102.
“It’s one of those things that’s meaningful,” Harbaugh said afterward. “It’s a very tough record to accomplish and it’s a long-term record. I’m not going to say it’s more important than winning the game. As a head coach I think you do that for your players and you do that for your coaches, which is something that they’ll have for the rest of our lives.”
Jackson said he didn’t “really care about the record” and wasn’t thinking about it on the game-ending carry.
The issue gained heat on social media after the game and on Monday morning, with fans and former players debating whether the Ravens stepped outside the normal bounds of sportsmanship.