Kolb has thrown for 1,553 yards with seven touchdowns and seven interceptions in his first six games with the Cardinals after he was acquired from the Eagles following the end of the lockout in late July. The 27-year-old has thrown five interceptions and has just a 67.2 quarterback rating in his three road games this season.
However, the Ravens have seen enough glimpses on film to take Kolb very seriously despite his early-season struggles.
“Everybody knows he’s great,” Webb said. “Great on his feet, got a gun, he knows how to run a team. You know, this is his first year at Arizona, so everything’s not just going to turn out to be perfect. He might have needed some time. You never know, it could be this week. That’s why we have to be on point.”
Kolb must deal with the league’s No. 1 defense and may have flashbacks to his last regular-season appearance in Baltimore when he was a member of the Philadelphia Eagles. Having replaced then-starter Donovan McNabb in the second half, Kolb drove the Eagles down to the 1-yard line in the fourth quarter and was threatening to turn a 22-7 deficit into a one-possession game.
Instead, Ed Reed stepped in front of a pass thrown to the back of the end zone and sprinted 107 yards for a touchdown to break his own NFL record for longest interception return for a touchdown. It’s a play that still sits in the back of Reed’s mind as he prepares to face Kolb again on Sunday.
“I didn’t forget that at all man and I’m sure he hasn’t either, but he’s with a new team with a little different scheme,” Reed said. “It’s probably somewhere in the back of his head. I mean, it’s in the front of mine so I’m looking forward to it.
The Ravens should have no problems winning on Sunday. Their offensive concerns — especially on the road — will not be magically solved with one high-scoring performance against a struggling defense.
A looming matchup in Pittsburgh next Sunday night will present a far better idea of where this team really stands as we approach the halfway point of the season.
But a comfortable win over the Cardinals will provide a sigh of relief, with the Ravens needing to expunge the stench of Jacksonville from their conscience. Some good karma is in order as Baltimore looks to improve to 5-2 for the fourth time in franchise history.
“We want to go out there and play football,” Flacco said. “You’ve got to realize, you’ve got to look each other in the face and say, ‘Hey, we’re in this together. We’re playing a game that we all love. Let’s go have fun and not think about all the crap that surrounds it. Go out there and play football. The outcome is the outcome, but let’s have fun during the process.’”