Well, this was not a good one. The Browns snapped their 11 game win street vs the Ravens. The Birdss ran for 55 yards on 21 carries. Rice and Pierce were non factors as the oline continued to struggle. The Browns ran for 73 yards on 28 carries. The worst part of this game: the Ravens defense was handeld by Jason Campbell. 23/35 262 yards 3 TDs O INT. This is the line I would expect from Brady, Manning, or Breese vs. The Ravens defense.
With another road loss, the Ravens fall to 1-4 on the road (2-1 at home) and 3-5 overall. If the Ravens continue their woes on the road, there is no chance they make the playoffs. Raven defensive front played well sacking Campbell 3 times and stopping the run. The secondary played poor all game, allowing Greg Little 122 yards. They did shut down Josh Gordon(3 rec 44 yds), but they couldn’t limit the damage. Ladarius Webb has been picked on all year. Same with Elam and Ihedigbo. They must improve.
The 9 penaltys for 80 yards didn’t help, as well as the -1 turnover ratio. Joe Flacco was pressured all game, including 5 sacks for 27 yards. 24/41 with a 56.1 QBR was terrible, although the Browns defense is very good. The Ravens offensive line may be the worst in the NFL. This game came down to if Flacco could outplay Jason Campbell in the second half and he was unable to. The defense struggling with the pass game and the poor offense need to change soon or the Ravens may be picking in the top 10. Luckily 4/5 next games are home, including CIN, NYJ, PIT, and MIN. This could be 3-4 wins that could put the Birds in wild card contention. Get it together Flacco, let’s get a 100 yard rusher this season please.
The Ravens won week 2 vs Cleveland at M&T Bank, 14-6. Some notable changes have occurred since week 2 for the Browns, including Jason Campbell starting this week and Trent Richardson being traded to Indy. The Ravens defense has been improving each week, especially the front 7 which has been able to pressure QBs.
While it would be easy to chalk this down as a win for the Ravens, don’t forget this game is being played in Cleveland. The Dawg Pound is always rocking, regardless of the teams success, so I expect this game to be a close one. Ravens should shut down the Browns rushing game, but I’d expect Jason Campbell to have a few scrambles out of the pocket. Limiting Josh Gordon and Jordan Cameron will be essential. Their explosive play ability is in the tops in the league.
The Browns defense is one of the best in the league. 6th in passing and 11th in rushing. They have also played Green Bay, Detroit, Kansas City, Cincinnati and Minnesota(only rushing attack), all teams with top offenses. The Ravens will not be able to run the ball, so this game should depend of Flacco and the defense. The Browns secondary is pretty good, including All Pro Joe Haden, so Flacco needs to stay calm in the pocket and make smart, quick decisions. They also have one of the better front 7 including Kruger, D’qwell Jackson, Phil Taylor, and rookie standout from LSU Barkevious Mingo, who has 4 sacks.
This is a tough call because I think it’s really a toss up, but I’m going to guess a 20-13 Raven’s victory. Suggs, Dumervile, and Ngata apply pressure and close running lanes all game, Flacco does enough in a defensive battle to get the W in Cleveland.
Josh Gordon and Hakeem Nicks are both apparently being shopped. I would assume it would take at least a 2nd rounder to get Gordon, and possibly a 1st rounder for Nicks, who is on his contract year. Is now the time for the Ravens to pull the trigger and make the biggest in season move this year in the NFL?
After the Browns shipped Trent Richardson to the Colts for a 1st rounder, he has yet to produce a quality week. Is is to late for the addition of Gordon or Nicks to make an impact for the Ravens? I think if a deal is not in place by the end of this week then it would be too late. Week 8 is next week, and assuming the player were to come in and learn the playbook and work with Flacco for 2 weeks, they would be ready for week 9. It’s now or never for the Ravens.
The ideal situation for Ravens fans would be to add Josh Gordon for a 2nd rounder to start opposite Torrey Smith. Smith provides the 1 on 1 deep threat that can go up and get the ball while Torrey Smith is the speedster who can run across the middle and pick up yards after the catch, but is also a vertical threat in the slot. I can picture the Ravens running an I formation with Gordon at X and Smith in the slot to one side with Dickson at TE and Rice and Leach in the backfield. With 2 dynamic WRs, opposing defenses will need to keep a safety or 2 back to prevent the long ball. Why do you think teams like Green Bay and Indianpolis are able to rack up rushing yards? Not because of superoir running game but because of the defenses they see. With the struggling o-line, having one more defender out of the box could really help the Ravens improve the run game.
I don’t think Nicks is a move they will make. He will be looking for Mike Wallace(5 Yr. 60 Mil) numbers, which the Ravens cannot afford. Josh Gordon on the other hand makes a little over 1 million a year and is locked in until 2016. The issue with Gordon is his previous off field issues, which may be risky to give up such a high pick on a trade that could not pan out.
While I would like to see Gordon in Ravens black and purple on Sundays, all the pieces don’t seem to be coming together to make this deal happen. NFL teams are made in the preseason, not with mid season deals that tend to throw off team chemistry.