The Ravens expressed optimism about Ray Rice's status after the starting running back left the fourth quarter of Baltimore's 14-6 win Sunday with a hip flexor strain.

Rice went down without getting hit with 11:57 left in the game and didn't return. He isn't scheduled for an MRI and he didn't walk with a limp after the win over the Cleveland Browns.

"He might've gone down to protect himself too" coach John Harbaugh said. "That's just something that we'll have to see. We're confident and optimistic right now. We'll have to see tomorrow how he responds to that."

Rice ran for 36 yards on 13 carries (2.8-yard average) before hurting his hip. He also fumbled late in the third quarter.

Backup running back Bernard Pierce replaced Rice and ran for 57 yards and one touchdown on 19 carries.