Flacco, Ravens getting close to that “homer” tag they’d like to avoid…

October 21, 2012 | Drew Forrester

It would be easy to also lay some blame on Dean Pees but he can only create schemes and systems for players that match the abilities the situation calls for on the field.

The Ravens have ZERO interior pass rush, save for the occasional foray into the backfield by Haloti Ngata, who is suffering through his worst season as a pro and appears badly in need of a bye-week-break and a few extra sit-ups.  Even the addition of quarterback-chaser-extraordinaire Terrell Suggs, while good to see, didn’t seem to faze the Texans offense.

Week after week, particularly on the road, it turns out to look the same as it did the last time the Ravens played on foreign turf.  No one chases the quarterback, the cornerbacks play “soft”, and the other team’s pass thrower and pass catchers have a Sunday feast moving up and down the field like they’re on jet skis.  Oh, and when the situation calls for a running play, the Ravens defense gets sliced and diced for chunks of yardage.

I keep trying to think of something the Ravens does extremely well and the only thing I can think of is that they all catch the team bus on time.

Other than that, it’s pretty ugly.

It’s one thing to go to Houston and fight and scratch and fall behind early 17-3 before battling back to make a game of it before falling 27-20.

It’s another to go there and get embarrassed by 30 points.

Some folks thought the Baltimore defense would “be okay” without Lardarius Webb and Ray Lewis.  It’s a small sample size, obviously, but the first 60 minutes of “Life without 21 and 52″ doesn’t look so promising, especially if Jimmy Smith is going to continue his Frank Walker act in the secondary.

And that Ravens offense, normally reliable and productive at home, has suddenly turned into a group of imposters when they have to get on an airplane Saturday at 3pm and travel to another NFL city.

I can’t explain it.

Neither can they, truth be told.

Believe me, there are some things in life that will always be a mystery.  How come the meter maid is always near your vehicle at the very moment the parking meter expires?  When you’re in a hurry at the grocery store, why does the person in front of you need to write a check – which needs the manager’s approval, of course – for $8.75 worth of pasta and canned green beans?  And why can’t athletes play *somewhere* near the same level on the road as they can when playing at home?

No one knows the answer to those three questions.

But the Ravens better figure out their problems before they head to Cleveland in a couple of weeks or — I can’t even believe I’m saying this — the Browns might give them a run for their money.

Losing to Houston is nothing to be ashamed of…they’re 6-1.

Losing to the Browns on November 4 would be…well…I’d rather not even think about it.

I’m not one to worry all that much about one game and one bad performance.  They happen at least once a season to most teams, like the 49’ers a week ago at home and even the Texans in Houston last week when the Packers blew them out.

But November 4 is IN Cleveland.

That means the game is away from Baltimore.

That, unfortunately, means the Ravens have the capability of laying a smelly, stinky egg.

As if Cleveland needs another foul odor.


11 Comments For This Post

  1. Phil Says:

    Every team has a few stars…some have one or two more then most teams. I see a pretty big difference in the level of talent of our non-star players and the other teams around the league. Why? In my opinion it is due to poor drafting…to paraphrase Cal…”Sorry Oz”

  2. tsnamm Says:

    The Ravens received a horrific beating… they wouldn’t have been competitive in Baltimore or the moon or any other location today.Houston is simply a much better team. The off season free agent losses on the defensive side of the ball have had a much bigger impact than anyone thought back during the spring. The players supposed to fill those spots have failed miserably to do the job. This defense hasn’t been “good” all season, record not withstanding. The offense under Joe Flacco now has the burden of carrying this team to the playoffs, and it doesn’t look like they’re up to the task.I thought I was watching a volleyball game with all the tipped passes for INT’s and incompletions. I’m sure Harb’s will be especially persnickety and thin skinned at his press conference tomorrow as the questions are asked about what happened. I can’t imagine a guy who is so defensive about criticism actually worked in Philly of all places… I guess Andy Reid must have kept the media at arms length from him. Suggs looked no worse for wear coming back from his injury, but I doubt he can make up for all the holes this D has. There is still time to get things back on track, but they will have to get the back ups to start performing, otherwise we might not even make the playoffs this season.

  3. Tim Says:

    This loss hurts, but maybe I was expecting this sort of beat down in Houston given the way the Texans lost last week and the Ravens beat them last year in the playoffs, and most importantly, were tied for the best record in the AFC. I don’t think either team is as extreme as the games showed, (I wasn’t able to watch it), but I think it is a bad matchup for the Ravens/great matchup for the Texans. The Ravens have holes, but I think are still capable of making the playoffs, but that is about as far as they go this year. The good thing from this loss is that it only counts as 1 in the record books and a winning streak can minimize the collateral damage. It’s always better to learn lessons after a win, but since that option is today I hope that over this bye week the offense becomes “elite”.

  4. Frank Says:

    EVERYONE settle down! We have holes to fill just like everyone else. This game became a very bad “spot” when the Texans lost to Green Bay. Bottom line – we are 5-2, in first place, we dont lose after a loss – let alone a bye week! And we have the Browns and Raiders in our next two games. Go to Pittsburgh at 7-2 and we control our own destiny. Everyone remember – like Drew says…. “the other team is trying also”!

  5. Unitastoberry Says:

    I expect alot more from the offense. The defense was suspect right from the first preseason game. The Texans wanted this game for payback from the playoff loss too.

  6. Dan Says:

    Don’t worry , It’s very early in the season and when this offensive “jugger Not” gets rollin with our running game and elite Quaterback every thing will be fine and we will again be in the playoffs . Yesterday was pretty bad though , even the Refs couldn’t keep it close for the TV viewers . :(

  7. Dan Says:

    When was the last time we drafted an impact player defensively? L. Webb? and how long ago was that? We all tend to critize the players and the coaches from time to time, which is normal, however in B’more we seem to glorify our front office and give them a free pass all the time. Maybe it’s time to question ” In Ozzie we trust”
    Maybe our scouting department is in need of some adjustments?

  8. The Armchair QB Says:

    As commented elsewhere, this offense has been stereotyped the past 4 plus years by inconstency! And, in my opinion, that’s not going to change until there is a change in coordinators……..

  9. justafan Says:

    It’s true that the defense has been disappointing to say the least. However, what else would you expect when they are on the field almost twice as long as the offense. It seems that the offense rarely is on the field much more than twenty minutes in several recent games. Part of the reason for this is that under the no-huddle offense, Joe Flacco and/or Cam Cameron have become so pass-happy they seem to have ignored the running game. We all know that Ray Rice is one of the best running backs in the league. Bernard Pierce is no slouch either. Why not use them? A balanced attack would yield better results and would certainly aid in keeping the defense off the field a little longer. Maybe the no-huddle offense is not all that is cracked up to be!

  10. Steve from Sandpoint Says:

    The last time I checked, the SUPER BOWL is a away game, good luck with that RAVENS !!!

  11. dave hittinger Says:

    Not sure where I’d start to fix the Ravens? Defense is incredibly soft, has Ed Reed made a tackle this year? He does look good though gliding in ever so smoothly after the play is over. On offense, poor Joe just looks slow in everything he does. Dropping back, or evading even the slightest rush…makes you wonder about being that elite QB. And no pass rush, not even a whiff makes it impossible to be competitive on D.

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