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Ex-Bengal Livings Knows Baltimore Better Than Most
IRVING, Texas – The Cowboys have worked all week on figuring out ways to fix their running game with a much-maligned offensive line.
After Chiefs running back Jamaal Charles ran for 140 of Kansas City’s 214 rushing yards against Baltimore last week, the Ravens don’t appear to offer the same stout rushing defense it typically features. But Cowboys guard Nate Livings said one performance can’t dictate how a defense will play from that point forward.
“We don’t need to watch another team blow somebody up to say, ‘Well, that’s what we’re going to do,’” Livings said.
Livings is more focused on what the Cowboys can do to improve their run game, rather than what the Ravens will do to try to defend it.
The guard would know more about this upcoming opponent than the typical Dallas player. While the Cowboys have only played the Ravens three times, Livings has faced Baltimore twice a year every year since joining Cincinnati’s active roster in 2008.
“We understand what type of environment it is,” Livings said. “They’re not going to give you nothing at home. You’ve got to go in and take it from them. That’s the mindset we’ve got to have.”
That was a tough task for Livings last year. The Ravens won both matchups against the Bengals in 2011 and captured their home meeting in 2010. But Livings’ Bengals got the best of the Ravens in Cincinnati in 2010, and won both games against the Ravens in 2009.
Not many opponents can say they’ve gone into Baltimore and left with a win in the last few years. The Ravens haven’t lost at home this year, didn’t lose at home last year and only lost once at home in 2010.
“It’s an environment they create,” Livings said. “They create an environment that’s hostile to their opponent. As an opponent going in, you’re going to have to understand that you’re going into a place where you have to take a win. They’re not going to give it to you. We’ve just got to have that type of mindset.”
Livings said he thinks the Cowboys can find a solution for their struggling running attack, but they can’t look to the opener against the Giants and assume they’ll be able to repeat their only strong rushing performance of the season, especially within the confines of M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore. Teams have looked at how the Cowboys have had success and found a way to combat that since Week 1.
“Of course, you look at what you’re good at,” Livings said. “But you can’t harp on it because they study film, too.”