Ravens Talk – 5 Things I’m Thinking After The Loss In Minnesota
Another poor effort from the Baltimore Ravens leaves us with many questions and very few answers. Here are 5 things I’m thinking.
Who’s to Blame?
I’ve always been a big time supporter of Harbaugh and what he’s accomplished, but it’s time to take a step back and take a look at the big picture. Over the past several seasons the Ravens have struggled tremendously. The games are no longer enjoyable to watch, the offense simply stinks, the run defense is bad, and the coaches seem clueless. What needs to give? What needs to be done for someone to shoulder the blame and make a change? I don’t mean Flacco or Harbaugh standing at the podium and simply saying we need to get back to work, or we just need to get better, or we’re this close we just need to execute. No, I’m sorry but those answers won’t do anymore. It is a systematic problem from top to bottom and it’s time someone steps forward and takes blame. Harbaugh, Newsome, Bisciotti, someone just admit where you went wrong and move on or restart. There’s no excuse why this offense isn’t improved by now. Every year we hear excuses. Flacco has no weapons, there are too many injuries, and play calling is inconsistent. Injuries happen and its bad luck, I get it. It certainly doesn’t help but saying a lack of weapons and inconsistent play calling is to blame, I don’t buy it. The only thing to blame is the lack of coaching this team has. How about Harbaugh coaches and develops a game plan that fits Flacco’s strengths as a passer!? Enough of the 2-yard attempts to Ben Watson and Buck Allen! Enough is enough, this is a systematical problem and it starts with the coaches, specifically Harbaugh. Harbaugh is paid to coach, maybe it’s time he starts because if you ask me that didn’t look like a passionate football team out there on Sunday.
(You can discuss this on the BSL Board here.)
Brandon Williams Isn’t Enough
The highly anticipated return of Brandon Williams wasn’t enough to patch up this run defense. Williams certainly stuck out and made a handful of plays, but the run defense continues to struggle after they gave up 169 rushing yards on 33 carries. If the Ravens have any hope at making a run, their run defense has to become a priority.
After enduring many struggles and waiting patiently on the sidelines, it’s time Chris Moore gets a shot at making some plays. In my opinion, Breshad Perriman has been given his opportunities and it’s time he finds his way to the sidelines for the remainder of the season. The way this team is struggling, there’s no reason not to give Moore an opportunity to see what he can do the rest of the way. He made a couple impressive catches on Sunday and he deserves a chance to make more.
Pass Rush Continues to Struggle
Overshadowed by the run defense, the pass rush has been nearly as bad. Baltimore is tied for 11th with 16 sacks, but hasn’t registered one in the previous two games. What was once thought to be a dominant defense has had its struggles and it’s fair to ask whether the poor play of the offense is to blame. The offense is incapable of putting long drives together and staying on the field, it’s fair to question whether the defense is just worn out.
Although the season appears to be spiraling out of control, due to the mediocrity of the NFL; amazingly there is still a semi-plausible way for the Ravens to squeeze into the playoffs. There’s still a lot of football left to be played and the Ravens are only 2 games behind Pittsburgh. Ideally, Ravens are able to beat Matt Moore and the Dolphins on Thursday night, and then have an extended period to get ready for the Titans. If they’re able to get to 5-4 by the time they face an inexperienced Brett Hundley, there may be a slim chance they can turn this season around.
Even so, a full collapse (if it brings about the required change) might be the better alternative, than backing into the post-season.
Robert grew up in Severna Park, MD and currently resides in Locust Point, Baltimore and is an avid sports and Ravens fan who has prior experience writing and working for Pro Football Focus. He is a 2014 graduate of the University of Maryland, College Park, majoring in kinesiology and is currently working as a full-time certified personal trainer while also working on completing his Doctorate of Physical Therapy.