This could be a huge day for the Ravens defense. With a banged up St Louis Rams offense, the Rams could be just what the doctor ordered for the Ravens to take advantage of.
Here are my three defensive keys to game for the Ravens:
- Get after Gus: Gus Frerotte is a veteran quarterback; whether you respect his play or not, you have to respect that he has made a 14yr career in the NFL. While he could be a sitting target in the backfield today due to his lack of mobility, he can throw a very good deep ball and is accurate with his throws. Ravens have to not let him get in a rhythm because he will run some no huddle and hurry up offense once he feels he is in a rhythm and has the match up he wants.
- Prove him wrong: Many people feel as though Brian Leonard plays as though he has something to prove being a white running back in the NFL. While Brian is not on the same level as Steven Jackson, he is a very smart runner who waits for his blocks to develop and for holes to open, then looks to burst through them. He has great speed once he gets through the holes. The Ravens have to hit him hard, early, and often, let him know from the first play that it is not going to a very physical day for him.
- Get tough with Torry: Torry Holt is a Pro Bowl wide receiver who is one of the more underrated ones in the league. He makes a very good one-two punch with Issac Bruce. The problem is that today he has not Issac Bruce, no Dante Hall, no Dane Looker, and a banged up Drew Bennett. Whatever Ravens corner back lines up across from him has to follow him wherever he goes today, on a out route, slant route, deep route, bathroom, locker room, parking lot, concession stand, back to BWI, it doesn’t matter. Not only do you need to follow him, but stay in his face the entire time, like a person that talks to you that has got bad breathe and just will not back up. If you give him any separation he will hurt you. Also stay physical with Torry the entire game, nothing cheap, but just remind him that you are going to be there all day and hitting him all day.
This should be a game where the Ravens can get to the quarterback and get sacks or force bad throws that lead to turnovers.
My prediction is 24-13 Ravens.