The Ravens’ win against the Patriots Nov. 3 was their second consecutive win against top competition and pushed their record to 6-2. But for Ravens two-way player Patrick Ricard, the win was extra special.
Born and raised in Massachusetts, Ricard attended the University of Maine and grew up a Patriots fan. So for him, this was an opportunity to take down his hometown team in front of family members and friends who were conflicted about what team to root for.
“They’re always happy for me. They were at least happy that I, myself and my team were the team to beat them,” Ricard said on Glenn Clark Radio Sept. 7. “They obviously wanted the Patriots to win, but my immediate family wants me to win every game.”
Nonetheless, the moment was bigger than Ricard could have ever imagined, and the crowd made sure to let him know. Ricard, who had 60 family members and friends alongside a sea of Ravens fans at M&T Bank Stadium, could not believe how “electric” the atmosphere was.
“To play against them in a prime-time game, you just couldn’t ask for more,” Ricard said. “This is my third year now with the Ravens and that was the loudest I’ve ever heard the stadium. It was just phenomenal.”
Prime time game in Baltimore vs the Patriots. Vs my hometown team, the team I grew up watching almost my whole life. NEVER in a million years, I thought this would be possible. Words can’t describe the emotions I’m going to go through tonight.. LET’S GO!!! pic.twitter.com/SxpW1SeNoZ
— Pat Ricard (@PRic508) November 3, 2019
And in that game, Ricard did what he always does: play along the defensive line and at fullback. Ricard, who went undrafted back in 2017, is grateful the Ravens allowed him to play both sides of the ball. He’s excited to continue doing whatever he is asked to do to help his team win.
“I’m very prideful for it because I’m the only one that does do this,” Ricard said. “It was a way for me to make the team because I was undrafted. Any opportunity they gave me, I just took it and I’m just grateful this organization is letting me do this. I just love doing it.”
In his three seasons with the Ravens, Ricard has eight catches, 30 receiving yards and three touchdowns to go along with 14 total tackles. Since being placed in that versatile position, Ricard has fallen in love with his role on the team. He would not want it any other way.
“It would feel weird not to have both roles like that,” Ricard said. “It’s all I’ve known, so at first it was like, ‘OK, this is different,’ because in college I only played on defense. So, at first it was a little weird, but now in my third year now doing it, it wouldn’t feel right.”
Ricard enjoys his opportunities at fullback as part of the Ravens’ dynamic running game, but on the defensive side, he gets an up-close-and-personal look in practice of what it’s like to play against quarterback Lamar Jackson.
“When Lamar got here, you could just tell something was different about him,” Ricard said. “… Now he’s had a whole year of being in the NFL and really developing and really now having the whole past offseason of being the guy and having this whole offense built around him. You could just tell when he first got here that he was going to be really special.”
And in the victory against the Patriots, Jackson and the Ravens continued to show how far the offense has come along since last season. Jackson threw for 163 yards and added 61 more on the ground. He accounted for three touchdowns in leading the Ravens to a 37-20 victory against the then-undefeated Patriots.
As a Patriots fan growing up, Ricard watched head coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady for years. And as the Ravens prepare for the 0-8 Cincinnati Bengals, Ricard believes the “Patriot Way” of not looking too far ahead is perfect for his team going into a divisional game against an opponent with nothing to lose.
“If you look forward then you’re not going to focus on the things that you have to and you’re not going to take it as serious,” Ricard said. “You’re not going to be as focused with the details and just really preparing for this team.”
To hear more Ricard, listen to the full interview here:
Photo Credit: Kenya Allen/PressBox