Ravens face what might have been at RB

OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- When the Baltimore Ravens play the Cleveland Browns on Sunday, they come face-to-face with what might have been at running back.

Four months ago, it looked like Terrance West had a good chance of playing in Baltimore, where he played his high school and college football. But the Browns traded back into the third round to get five spots ahead of the Ravens and selected West with the No. 94 overall pick.

While the Ravens are pleased with the upside of rookie fourth-round pick Lorenzo Taliaferro (who has no carries this season), they could've used another Ray Rice-type back like West especially after the team cut Rice.

"Terrance is a guy that we really liked, as you know," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. "We had designs on him in the draft, certainly, and Cleveland jumped up there and got him and he has not disappointed. He has played really downhill. [He is a] hard runner, make-you-miss type back [who] understands the scheme they’re running really well."

The Browns are thankful they were aggressive in going after West in the draft. Ben Tate, a free-agent addition, sprained his knee in the season opener and is not expected to play Sunday against the Ravens.

West has taken advantage of the opportunity, becoming the first rookie running back with at least 90 yards from scrimmage in their team's first two games since Chris Johnson and Matt Forte in 2008.

He said he hasn't thought about how close he got to playing for his hometown team instead of against it.

“I’m past that point right now," West said. "I’m looking forward to playing against the Ravens right now. That was the combine time when they could have drafted me, but I’m looking forward to playing against them right now. That’s my main focus.”

West was a two-time All-Baltimore City selection at Northwestern High School before starring at Towson University. He set the FCS single-season rushing record with 2,509 yards as he helped Towson to the national championship game.

So far, preparing for Baltimore hasn't been too much of a distraction for West. He hasn't received many calls from family in Baltimore about tickets for Sunday's game. It may be because he posted "Tickets are not free" on Facebook.

"So, they probably got the hint," West said. "My main focus is playing against them on Sunday. I’m not worried about tickets right now.”