Wow, is Jay Cutler bad. This morning, I had this exchange with a friend regarding da Bears’ QB:
Friend: that guy is a one trick pony
hey.. i’m known for my interceptions
everything you’ve heard about me is true
Friend: maybe he has another undiagnosed disease: he needs glasses
“ya know, this would be a lot easier if there were some way to tell the teams apart”
he’s tryin to read names
is that my johnson or theirs?
that doesn’t sound right
man.. why are three of my receivers all next to each other?
oh well.. one of them will get it
all the great qbs must really be good with names
me: guys, spread out!
In short, Jay Cutler = really, really bad. How bad?
“He threw an interception to Frank Walker” bad.
“He threw TWO interceptions to Dominique Foxworth” bad.
“His 7.9 QB rating was the worst EVER by a Ravens’ opponent” bad.
That’s some kinda bad. Especially that last one, considering some of the great defenses the Ravens have had over the years, defenses that the current version does not even sniff. Jay Cutler, fittingly, made the Ed Reed-less 2009 Ravens look like the 1985 Bears.
Cutler was made to look even worse by comparison, thanks to the nearly perfect day turned in by Ravens’ quarterback Joe Flacco.
Flacco set single-game career highs for touchdown passes (4) and quarterback rating (135.6). His two touchdown passes to Todd Heap in the first quarter, both of which were set up by Cutler-ceptions, gave the Ravens a 14 point lead that ended up being more than enough for the day. For the second week in a row, Flacco’s day was done early, as the second-year starter was sent to the bench after helping build up an insurmountable Ravens’ lead. Natty Joe will need to continue his stellar play of the last two contests, over the next two (against much stiffer competition), for B’More to hold on to their still-precarious Playoff spot.
Speaking of Heap, it was his first touchdown since Week 2 in San Diego, and his first two-touchdown performance since Week 10 of 2008 in Houston. Welcome back Todd. Now please, try not to limp off the field after every single catch.
Still more praise to go around, especially to the guys catching passes.
Demetrius Williams made a beautiful catch in double coverage for his first score since Week 8 of last season against Oakland. His four grabs were his most since the Colts game last year, and his 71 yards marked the most he has amassed since his only career 100-yard game – in Week 15 of his rookie campaign, waaaaaay back in 2006. A very warm welcome back to you as well, Mr. Productive Demetrius Williams. Two requests for #87:
1. Stay healthy.
2. Don’t do whatever the heck you did to land in John Harbaugh’s ridiculous “dog house” ever again.
Finally, a congratulations to Derrick Mason, who caught his 850th career pass, along with 5 others on the day, for 86 yards and a touchdown. Ho hum, just another day at the office for the Ravens’ oldest player.
Moving on to the ground guys…
Ray Rice had two nice 28-yard gains, one on each of the team’s first two scoring drives, on his way to 87 on the day. He looked to be in for another MONSTER performance, but the Bears did a nice job of putting the clamps on him after a few big chunks (of course, that just opened the door for all of the above mentions). Tack on 17 receiving yards, and Mighty Mouse was good for 100+ from scrimmage for the 11th time in 15 games this year.
Troy Smith, in his first “wildcat” action of 2009, ran the option well for 8 yards on his first try. After that, he was mostly unremarkable. Why Cam Cameron decided on this game to throw in the gimmick plays is anybody’s guess. Guaranteed we don’t see any more of that against Pittsburgh.
Unfortunately, that was about it for the running game. Willis and Pain Train combined for just 15 yards on 7 carries. Hardly the kind of 3-headed monster we had in mind, especially against the league’s worst run defense. When you get four scores through the air though, it’s hard to complain too much. And those two should be nice and rested for what should be another grinder in Pittsburgh next week.
It wasn’t all good news, though. The Ravens’ special teams had a rough day. First, they allowed the Bears’ only touchdown of the day, a punt return by Earl Bennett, robbing the defense of what should have been a shutout. Much, much, worse was that they are now without a kick returner, as Lardarius Webb injured his knee in the third quarter, and is expected to miss the rest of the year.
The loss of Webb hurts not only on special teams, but in the secondary, where he had quickly became the team’s best cornerback. The presence of #21 back there was a big reason for the improvement over the last month or so. It really is a shame for the rookie out of Nicholls State, and it could be potentially disastrous for the Ravens. Baby Ben threw for like 900 yards or some ridiculous mess against Green Bay’s strong secondary, and the Ravens’ comparatively weak one will look all the more appetizing to that big dummy without Lardarius roaming. The return of Ed Reed just got much more urgent.
We wish Webb a full and speedy recovery, and can’t wait to see him starting for the Ravens in 2010.
By virtue of the Denver Broncos’ loss to Oakland, the Ravens moved up to the #5-seed in the AFC, and now have some margin for error, albeit a razor-thin one. A loss next week in Pittsburgh will not be totally devastating, as the Ravens will still hold the edge on the evil ones thanks to a better conference record.
Screw that noise, though. According to Heap, the Ravens were already thinking black-and-yellow (it’s not gold, you tools, the Saints are black and gold) thoughts in the post-game locker room.
It’s Steelers week again, B’More. Let’s not let our festive and joyful holiday spirit get in the way of some good old-fashioned Hapalochlaena-grade venom spewing towards those towel-waving heathens. They probably don’t celebrate Xmas anyway.