With One Hit, Leach Sends Message

New fullback Vonta Leach got himself and teammates fired up with a big hit.

Posted by Ryan Mink on Sunday, August 21st, 2011 at 12:01 pm | Categories: 2011 Season Gameday, Preseason 2 vs Chiefs, Ryan Mink

With one hit Friday night, Ravens fullback Vonta Leach showed there’s a new sheriff in town.

After catching a 5-yard pass in the flats, the bulldozing Pro Bowler lowered his pads and prepared for contact from 6-foot-2, 239-pound Chiefs linebacker Brandon Siler.

Leach’s hit not only sent his own helmet flying, but also put Siler into flight.

The M&T Bank Stadium crowd erupted as the Ravens’ free-agent acquisition excitedly popped up from the turf. Chiefs linebacker Demorrio Williams took exception and motioned at Leach to get back on his side of the field. Leach barked right back at him.

“I think he kind of gave a little message to our crowd,” Head Coach John Harbaugh said with a smile.

Leach didn’t only fire up the fans.

On the very next play, the Ravens executed the perfect cutback run, springing running back Ray Rice for a 26-yard touchdown. Leach sealed off the left side while the line pancaked a Kansas City lineman and rookie right tackle Jah Reid closed off the right, opening a lane for Rice.

“I think it not only got me going, but it got the team going,” Leach said. “I’m just happy. The defense has been exciting here for the last so many years. I just want to bring another element to our offense to be physical on that side of the ball.”

Since being signed to step into the void left by Le’Ron McClain, who was on the opposite sideline with Kansas City, Leach has gushed about his love of blocking.

But don’t forget that he is also a weapon in the receiving game. Leach hauled in 25 receptions and two touchdowns in 2007 with the Houston Texans. Even in that aspect of the game, he brings his hard-nosed demeanor.

“My first thought was to lower the boom on him and make him not want to tackle me,” Leach said. “For me to be a part of the game and feel the excitement of the crowd, I feed off that.”

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