It had been quite awhile since running back Kenneth Dixon appeared in a game, so he really didn’t know what to expect when the Ravens activated him Saturday.
“I really didn’t know the role, but I practiced very well,” Dixon said after the team’s 26-16 win Sunday over the Atlanta Falcons. “They told me that I was going to be up this game, so I just went out and took advantage of it. I tried to run downhill and do everything I could to get the team a win.”
On a day when starting running back Gus Edwards rushed for 82 yards and quarterback Lamar Jackson racked up 75, powering a ground game that finished with 207 yards overall, Dixon actually finished with the highest yards per carry (eight for 37 yards).
“I think I can bring the same thing to the offense as Gus does,” Dixon said. “We all do a good job. When your number is called, it’s just time for you to go. I really don’t know or really care what my role is. As long as we get the team win, I’m good.”
A knee injury in the Ravens’ season opener sent Dixon, a 2016 fourth-round pick, to the injured reserve, and he was designated to return Nov. 16. With former starter Alex Collins placed on season-ending IR Saturday, Dixon joined the active roster just a day after coach John Harbaugh said he was an “option” to play Sunday.
It didn’t take him long to figure out what kind of effect Jackson has on an opponent’s run defense. With Buck Allen not receiving a carry and Ty Montgomery used mainly as a receiving option, Dixon was thrown back into the Ravens’ running back rotation.
“Having Lamar is definitely, as a run threat, it basically opens up a lot,” said Dixon, who added a catch for 6 yards. “It freezes the defense.”
» Kicker Justin Tucker was 4-for-4 on field-goal attempts Sunday, converting from 41, 21, 45 and 47 yards. It’s the fourth time in Tucker’s career that he’s made at least four in a game. “Awesome weapon,” Jackson said. “Greatest kicker in the game right now, man. Greatest kicker that I’ve seen. He’s the best.”
» Sam Koch's successful completion of a fake-punt pass to Chris Moore in the second quarter raised his career passing stats to 5-for-5 for 69 yards and four first downs.
» Outside linebacker Terrell Suggs, who followed his fumble recovery for a touchdown last week with two tackles for loss (one sack) and three quarterback hits Sunday, offered strong words of support for Joe Flacco afterward. “I’ve been around here a long time,” he said. “I’m a big fan of my teammates and, particularly, Super Bowl MVPs.”