Good morning/evening, readers of all ages, it’s been about a few days since game day and I’m happy with the results but there are some fan based criticisms to go along with it. We all have our opinions on the team so far, but here’s mine with some bits to try to convince you on some other matters.
So without further ado let’s get into it… Wait a sec, but first coffee or whatever adult beverage of your choice or juice box of choice.
Also I’d like to notate that during the game I was at a friend’s party Saturday and missed most of the second half due to adult drinking activities. And Sunday my dogs had a play date with the dog who lives at the house they’ll be staying at while we go on vacation, the Monday was back to work till the next day off, so this piece got delayed. Moving on….
The Secondary was on fire most of the night!
Yes, you read that bold lettering right. Outside of normal miscues & catches made during zone assignments, the secondary was on point & didn’t miss much of a beat. With 3 INTs, 9 Pass Deflections, Half a sack, 2 QB hits, a fumble recovery, a bunch of tackles & just them locking up NOLA WRs all evening. I’d say that was a hell of a job.
Geno Stone, Anthony Averette, & Brandon Stevens were the rotation guys that I definitely seen shine the other night. You can’t change my mind on that. Also as expected the regular starters made some noise too.
Marlo, Peters, & Elliott all kept up on their assignments. Which made not only the fans but the coaches happy.
The only criticism I had was Chris Westry with that bad “Taunting” penalty, and zone coverage… I understand it’s necessary in the game but I can sill complain the entire time… Yes, that was a Bob’s burgers reference.
WAIT! …We can’t also forget about Shaun Wade from THE Ohio State University sealing the deal at the end of the game with a sealing INT. I’ll be honest I was little nervous when the put him in an outside spot but he didn’t do bad.
Give credit to the trenches too!
Now I know that this game was to work out a lot of the depth, same with next/this week but you know we all can be impressed with the pressure being put on not only on the QB but also the run game. 1st & 5th round LB picks in Odafe Oweh & Daelin Hayes were both creating some good noise. Oweh putting in work at not only EDGE and off ball LB but at Gunner on the punt team. Also heard either my fellow Baltimore Ravens fan & kind of boss/kinda colleague TD Hunter or someone on twitter say he played a snap at Safety, like what?! This kid is a monster.
Hayes was putting just as much work but as a true EDGE rusher. Even though he’s still young & in developmental staged & a different number, I’m getting T-Sizzle vibes. The guy had a slight upper hand in tackles than our star defensive pick but you know the unit is getting it done.
Shhhh…. I heard some rumbling of a bullrush.
The Ravens base D-Line did a hell of a job getting penetration to stop the run & keeping pressure on the QB too. All from Justin Madubuike, Broderick Washington to Chris Smith & Aaron Crawford. These guys up front continue to impress not only during practice but game time too.
Madubuike & Smith impressed me alot with what I did see. Will be excited to see what they can do next week.
Also lets get back into the LB’s because there’s a few things that need to be discussed…
I think it’s starting to get Hot In Here!
Ok, it wasn’t just me who thought Ray Lewis got younger, came out of retirement, and dawned the number 6? I wasn’t going crazy after all. Young 2nd year ILB Patrick Queen was balling so hard that it gave so many of us vibes of having ole prime Ray Ray back. Dude balled out in the first quarter & in the little bit of the second. With 4 total tackles, 4 solo, 1 sack, 2 TFL, & 1 QB hit in just alittle bit of time. Holy Sh*t batman! We’re definitely looking at something special here.
Can’t have 6 without the 3, got our own version of the Three 6 Mafia in L.J. Fort & Pat Queen. L.J. may have had half of Queen’s numbers but hey he got the job done and is proving to be a key impact rotational player that many of us know he is.
Another small name that I thought did very well before going down with injury was Kristian Welch. He was on top of his assignments & stayed hustling the entire time.
To the Offensive side of the trenches
Now most of us can understand that yes the OL didn’t do as much as we expected. They were utilizing immediate/3rd string back ups as well as playing versatility merry go round with active starters. Ben Bredeson & TCC did fairly well but I swear there were times when I seen starting C Bradley Bozeman & RG Ben Powers out at Left & Right Tackles. Same with back up LT Tyre Phillips at LG.
John Harbaugh & Co want to make sure that their Linemen can hop in any spot at any given time because the Next Man Up mentality. With all the regular starters in, personally I believe that these guys can be a force to be reckoned with.
It’s clear that Huntley is QB2
Yes, you read that one right too. Tyler Huntley is the clear QB2 not only because of Trace McSorley being out of the rest of the preseason due to a back injury but also because as mentioned in a previous piece of work, he is a close mimic or has exact similar skills that of Lamar Jackson. Trace has good skills as a pocket passing & mobile QB but it’s like their molding him to be the old style offense they used to run with Flacco.
With Huntley you can stay on a exact forward route that you want in the offense. While going 12/16 for 79 yards with a passer rating of 85.2 and rushing for 43 yards on 7 carries & 1 TD. This guy is literally showing flashes of 2018 LJ8 in the preseason.
WR rotation showed out.
We all missed out on the preseason debut of the one we’re all waiting on for the Offensive side of the ball, Rashod Bateman. Injuries happen, especially early on with everyone trying to get acclimated to the league, but we did get good looks at what the rest of the depth looks like.
Devin Duvernay(4 catches for 28 yards) & James Proche(1 catch for 8 yards along with almost all the special teams work) both did fairly well. As you can see in the parentheses some of the stars but they set up the run & created opportunities for other WRs.
This group is still going to be very fun to watch via the preseason.
Other battles are just as heated
Running back, Fullback, & TE depth are all huge wants but right now with how things went Saturday we could be seeing some new faces stay on the roster.
In the RB room, Ty’Son Williams(10 Carries & 41 yards) & Nate McCrary( 5 carries & 31 yards) both made names for themselves in the second half. I’m excited to see what they do in the next game. Justin Hill on the other hand, not as productive but hopefully he’ll bounce back.
TE3 and more battles heated up as Josh Oliver, Tony Poljan, & Eli Wolf all made attempts to fill those spots. Josh Oliver was slowly making progress in the hopes that he’ll be the official TE3 we’ve been looking for.
Ben Mason was making moves to make himself known to in not only the TE role but the dual role in the FB as-well that they’ve been experimenting with the past few years now. So that made me happy with what I did see. I think keeping him & Pancake Pat on the team will help this monstrous rushing attack tremendously.
Wrapping up with final notes
As we’re almost to Preseason Week 2 & as I’m typing this, roster changes/cuts are being made, so be on the look out for those. All these roster decisions on the front office & coaches are stressful but yet exciting. It’ll be fun to predict the final 53 man roster
Well with all that being said thank you for stopping by and hopefully reading all of this. I hope you enjoyed & don’t forget to check out all the content on the Around The Block network. Also on all forms of social media. Have a great day!