Welp, Monday Night Football has come & gone. Vacation is & has been over for almost a week now. Thursday Night Football has happened along with Friday Night Lights. And as most of us in the W2 world the first week back to work is well not the greatest. Originally had planned on this being written and released on Wednesday but… it didn’t.
Raiders fans were probably still partying till Wednesday night in celebration on their win, while we all bitched & moaned & wondering what the team is going to do next. Well with it being this late in the week we’ll mix the Week One Review with the Week 2 Preview. Will also try to make this kinda short & sweet. With that being said….
It was a tight game from the start on Monday.
Both Defenses were playing their hearts out and offenses were struggling to find their rhythm. We expected the Ravens’ D to shine and do what they do best. Yes they had some major and minor hiccups but most teams do in this day and age. It’s just the nature of it.
Also bear with me as I do my best to remember some key good things from the game as we go into the “constructive fan criticism” first.
Watching the defense do it’s thing even without Marcus Peters was fun to watch for the most part. Secondary was doing its thing. Averette & Humphrey were taking names most of the night at least in my opinion. Linebackers staying on top of their assignments, & DL stuffing the run…
But to quote one of my wife’s friend’s catchphrase “what the hairy hell?!” Where was most of the pass rush with the 5+ sacks or the LB/DB’s with the at least 2-3 INTs that we were expecting based off all the offseason & training camp hype?! It was no where I tell you.
Ok, I lied. The team got three Sacks, 5 TFL, & 1 INT. Along with 69 Total Tackles & 50 Solo. Which I honestly can’t be mad with.
What I can be mad at is the fact that going into overtime they let a wide open receiver score the game sealing touchdown. But I’m going little too far into it with that.
Queen, Humphrey, & Oweh all stayed on FIRE!
Going into some individual stuff again, it was absolutely amazing watching these three compete on such a high level. Star CB Marlon “Fruit Punch” Humphrey was just continuing to make hisself a house hold name in the MNF opener. 9 Total Tackles, 6 Solo, & 1 Pass Deflect, along with just keeping almost everyone he lined up against on lock down was a show to see! You literally can’t ask for a better guy on the team.
Patrick Queen is literally our modern day version of Ray Lewis. I honestly think the team got that void filled, outside of the amazing vocal leadership, with this young man. He was all over the field, stats similar to Marlon’s are as followed: 9 Total, 6 Solo, 1 Sack, 1 TFL, & 1 QB Hit. Top of the defensive leader board right here.
Odafe Oweh has the feel good story of the night in my book on the Ravens’ defense. Went from NO SACKS in college at Penn State to his first ever recorded sack in the NFL with 10 seconds left of the first half he was able to accomplish just that. If I could figure out how to put the team’s tweeted video of it on here I would, but just want to say it was incredible. His stat line isn’t as well put together as his more experienced teammates but oh well. Take a quick glance if you would. 2 Total, 2 Solo, 1 Sack, 1 TFL, & 2 QB Hits.
Just take a good look at the picture below or to the side cause you all know what we’re gonna talk about…
Look… I’m trying not to rub my temples together or go grab a bottle of booze but what in the double #@%$ happened?! Breathe, just breathe…
We’ve been expecting a good, strong, & effective offensive line this entire process going into Monday outside of the question mark at LG. Now we have questions everywhere. What are we gonna do long term at LG, LT(I’ll get to that soon), & RT.
Personally I expect to stick with 3/5 of the current starters but let’s wait a second to get into it, and I don’t want to get too far into this because of the preview side of the article. Lamar was sacked a total of 3 times and hit a total of 7 times. The pressure was put on our precious QB and there wasn’t much for him to do…
Or was there? While watching the entire offense all night there were times I thought to myself “Where is the Lamar that we know would take off when the pocket is collapsing and/or doesn’t have anyone to dump it off too?” Is LJ8, Roman, & Urban all sticking to a traditional pocket passer roll now?
We all have tons of questions for the Offense.
To answer some of the questions in the previous paragraph, I would say yes but no. LJ8 is about proving the narrative on him wrong. Everyone wants to make the RB playing QB joke still to this date but when you have a QB like Lamar, you let him turn on the gas and do what he does best. This season is still about proving critics wrong. Even though he had a 56.1 QBR, it was still better than Carr’s 50.3. LJ8 has a total stat line of 19/30 attempts for 235 yards, 1 TD(Passing), 12 rushing attempts, 86 yards, long of 28 yards. That’s good but not exactly what everyone was expecting. And I could guess what you all were looking for but anyways…
I’d like to also ask, Is Hollywood Brown & Sammy Watkins an official WR like good tag team? According to what I’ve seen on the TV and on the official stats, I would say yes! Sammy had a total of 4 Receptions, 96 Yards, Long of 49, & 8 Targets. Half is better than lower but he made out well with that game, almost 100 dang yards in such a short time. Marquise Brown went 6 for 6 of carries/targets, 69(Nice) yards, 1 TD on a nice extended play, & a long of 21. Honestly this makes me happy, & adding Rashod Bateman in a few weeks will make this WR group into something special.
But at the end of the night with everything being said the team couldn’t get the job done & put a tally in the win column…
Moving onto Week 2.
Or at least we all hope. This Sunday at 8:20 on NBC, The Baltimore Ravens will host the Kansas City Chiefs at M&T Bank Stadium. This will be the Ravens’ home opener & will expect a lot of excited fans too finally be back in the stands. I know if I lived in MD, I’d be making it to tailgate & have fun but yeah.
Anyways, there are still a lot to topic & questions going into this game following the loss in Vegas. Who is starting where? Is the Offense & Defense ready? What’s happening & why does this feel like 2015?
Just breathe. OK?
Yes there’s a lot of injuries, ok. Tyre Phillips & Chris Westry both placed on IR officially. And I’ll just post a picture of the Ravens’ injury report from today courtesy of the team social media & PR teams if you haven’t seen already.
Ronnie Stanley, Marlon Humphrey, Hollywood Brown, and so on & so on. Looking at this is painful. I’m not even gonna lie, lots of the active roster including the whole starting running back room is the 2015 feeling I was talking about before.
But there are some “bright sides” to this madness. The next man up mentality. That’s it, I’m being Harbaugh right now. With the Offensive Line being a little banged up and without a lot of chemistry, I expect to move forward and do well. What we could possibly be looking at going into Sunday’s match up could go like this:
- LT: Alejandro Villanueva
- LG: Ben Powers/Cleveland
- C: Bradley Bozeman
- RG: Kevin Zeitler
- RT: Patrick Mekari
The reason I put Powers & Cleveland both on there is due to the fact of the big question mark still there. Anyways, Will this do the job? Maybe, because Powers was set to be a starting LG before Boze ultimately ended up winning the spot in 19 & 20 if not mistaken. Mekari is still proving himself to be a top versatile Lineman that’s able to step into any role & do it well. AV would be making his way back to his natural spot, so self explanatory. Bozeman will clean up his act and kick ass/take names in week 2, simple as that.
Believe in the OL!
Will the defense show up?
Marlon will be back in time & be ready for the game. I hope at least. The Ravens organization/team still has a good defense in general on hand. I’m expecting the pass rush/run stuff to be better equipped for Sunday night at home. Expect a big day out of Brandon Williams, Oweh, & Queen again. Also be prepared for AA, Elliott, & Clark to do some damage, in a good way, coming up.
Predictions as far as stats go will be as following:
73 Tackles, 6 TFL, 3 Sacks, 2 INTS, and a good handful of Pass Deflects or QB Hits.
Are these numbers realistic? I’m not sure to be honest. Ask someone who is more stat heavy to double check me.
LJ8 goes back to being LJ8
Yes, you all read that right. LJ8, John Harbaugh, Greg Roman, & James Urban along with the entire offense sat down, watched film, & figured out a good game plan. They’ll let Lamar & Co go out to have fun and do what they do best. That’s what they did when they went 14-2 & 11-5.
Listen I know that the RB Room & new OL is causing the O to simplify things & not let the team go full on but hey things are slowly but surely get better.
Expect to see LJ to connect with Sammy & Marquise on their own set of TDs. Let Murray or Williams get in the end zone with their own scores. Also He may walk/run his own score in. Who knows?
All we do know is that this will be a good and close game…
Yes, even with the scores predicted above & defense doing work, this game will be close. I’m talking like 28-26 close in favor of the Ravens. Andy Reid/Pat Mahomes & Co are coming to town with fight in their eyes. Ravens fans, at the game, you’ll have to all get loud and rowdy. At home, The Fock has to send all kinds of positive vibes.
Have patience, drink plenty of good fluids before & after, but remember to enjoy the game. Chose violence fore the hours of the game.
Quick Wrap Up.
Whew! Longer than expected but hope everyone enjoyed the piece. I know we moved on quick & suddenly but it’s time to nut up or shut up for game day!
Remember to follow everyone & everything on the ATB Network via website or social media! Have a great morning/day/evening!