October 31, 2011
The Ravens' commitment to the run will be severely tested this week against the NFL's top-ranked run defense. Not only has San Francisco held the opposition to a league-low 73.9 rushing yards per game, but the 49ers haven't allowed a rushing touchdown through the first 10 games of the season, which is tied for the third longest streak since 1970. The 49ers have also not allowed a 100-yard rusher in 32 consecutive games, tied for the third longest streak since 2000. Nose tackle Isaac Sopoaga (pictured) and defensive tackles Ray McDonald and Justin Smith are formidable against the run and behind them is arguably the league's best linebacker tandem in Patrick Willis and NaVorro Bowman. A Suitland native, Bowman leads the 49ers in tackles. Willis, a four-time Pro Bowl selection, leads the NFL with 680 tackles since 2007. The Ravens, who average 99.6 rushing yards, had 119 yards on the ground last Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals, the No. 2 rushing defense in the NFL. Rice rushed for 104 yards and two touchdowns on 20 carries, breaking his streak of four consecutive games with less than 65 yards rushing.