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Dime Coverage: Post-Game Thoughts on Broncos/Ravens

The Ravens are in trouble.

After today’s embarrassing beat-down at the hands of the Denver Broncos the team is in desperate need of something, anything to put a halt to this now three game losing streak.

Most people agreed that Cam Cameron’s firing last week had an air of panic to it. That maybe it was a move to jump start a team that truly needed one after dropping close losses that were oddly enough due to a leaky defense at the end. It did not have it’s desired effect as Baltimore got blasted in front of it’s home crowd this afternoon.

So what now?

Two games left with a slim one game lead in the AFC North.

The Ravens can still wrap the division up with they can at least win a game but you have to wonder what kind of playoff team they will be after getting stomped by two of the AFC powers in Denver and Houston.

With that in mind let’s talk about today’s game even if you don’t really want to.

  • The firing of Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron was THE big story this past week. While I was no Cameron supporter (I wanted him gone two season ago) I did question the timing of the move. Was this really the best thing to do just as your team is hoping to make a December run into the post-season? After today’s debacle one of the other main reasons why the Ravens have struggled as of late reared its ugly head – poor execution. During the first half the offensive line blocked so poorly it didn’t matter which play was called. So let’s remember that Cam was only part of the problem.
  • Joe Flacco had an awful game today with his poor decision making, erratic throws and turnovers leading to defeat. A common theme in the last three losses is Flacco giving the ball to the opposition. His fumble was inexcusable on a sneak that would have easily nabbed a First Down. He simply didn’t tuck it into his body enough. He must improve his ball security. Of course the interception is the play that everyone will be analyzing on Monday morning. With the Ravens finally driving at the end of the half he stared down Anquan Boldin on an out pass that was undercut and ran back for six.  I do not agree that a timeout in that situation should have been called as some might suggest. The Broncos were on their heels and wasn’t the No-Huddle supposed to be one of Joe’s strengths?  Instead the mistake was a game changer as the Ravens went into the break down 17 instead of potentially down 3. As the season draws to a close the question of Joe Flacco’s long term future will need to be answered. He’s had a lot of success over the years but there’s no question he’s hit a holding pattern right now.
  • The Offense looks totally lost right now. They didn’t get a First Down until the Second Quarter and couldn’t give any help to the defense as they tried to hold back Peyton Manning’s offense. Very little confidence as a group right now.
  • Dennis Pitta was a lone bright spot today. He caught 7 for 125 and 2 touchdowns.
  • The Offensive Line was putrid today. It hurt not having All-Pro Marshal Yanda available but they just couldn’t handle Denver’s speed up front. Bobbie Williams is done. Jah Reid isn’t a Guard. Osemele has the potential to be a good one someday but I wonder if his future is at Guard instead of Tackle. And what about Bryant McKinnie? He’s held up residence in Coach Harbaugh’s doghouse since he was a camp no-show back in July. If Harbs didn’t want to use the guy then why did the front office pay him a few mill. to be a spectator in 2012?
  • Injuries continue to mount as both Torrey Smith and Bernard Pierce left the game with concussions. I guess it was the offense’s turn after the defense was down to using practice squad players this afternoon.
  • The shorthanded defense put in a game effort for most of the way and if the offense could have at least mustered some points in the first half maybe the game would not have gotten out of hand. They did hold the Broncos to 4 of 15 on third down and got to Manning twice for sacks. But do you really expect to win when Josh Bynes is your top tackler (13)?
  • Cary Williams has played better as of late but was torched today the fairly average Eric Decker (8-133-1TD). Williams spent a lot of time jawing with Decker and picked up a useless penalty for tackling him five yards out of bounds. I won’t put the touchdown all on Williams as Ed Reed was caught underneath offering no help on the toss as he guessed wrong-again.
  • Today was the first time since 2009 that the Ravens have lost three in a row.
  • I’m now ready to label Terrence Cody as a major disappointment. For a huge guy he gets pushed around way too easily. As the players like Ray Lewis and Ed Reed appear to be in their Autumn years in Baltimore Cody was one of the players expected to help anchor the line with Haloti Ngata. He’s one player that hasn’t stepped up. I’d also put Jimmy Smith in that category as well, if he could ever actually get on the field.

 


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3 Responses to “Dime Coverage: Post-Game Thoughts on Broncos/Ravens”

  1. rsty says:

    Is Ozzie Newsome not looking as good as before? Or is that just the losing streak talking…

  2. Losing amplifies everything but let’s take a look at Ozzie.

    On defense it doesn’t help when a first rounder in Jimmy Smith can’t seem to stay healthy and when he is on the field he seems lost. Your top two picks in 2010 have been disappointments (Sergio Kindle/Terrence Cody)Is that Ozzie, the staff, or the players themselves?

    Otherwise they’ve still found players who can contribute – Upshaw, Osemele, Pierce, McPhee, Torrey, Pitta, Art Jones, Dickson. And that’s just in the last 3 drafts.

    Ozzie still gets it right more times than not.

  3. Gene w says:

    I am not too worried about the defense. In fact, the defensive showed up yesterday. But when you go three and out and turn the ball over, you can’t expect the defense to on the field more than the offense and play at a high level. You look to the future, Kruger and Upshaw and the other infusion of youth, I like what I see. Remember Suggs is not a full strength and no Webb, Pollard, McClain and so on. This game came down to a fatal mistake by Flacco. A 14 point swing. The good news, the pressure is off the Ravens, they are in the playoffs. Maybe now they can get back to winning instead of worrying about the division race.

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