W/ the Ravens standing soundly at 4-9, there is little intrigue left to the season. But 2 questions remain: will they lose to the Dolphins? Will Billick be back?
Let’s take a look at both:
12/16 Baltimore Ravens (4-9) at Miami Dolphins (0-13)
Summary: The Dolphins are bad, like history-of-the-NFL bad. The Ravens are bad, like making a run at history-of-the-franchise bad. At least in the 4-12 season of ’96 they put up points like gangbusters.
Dolphins: Cleo Lemon will be back under center, Jesse Chatman will return to the lineup and the ‘Phins face their best shot yet at a victory. Their defense is mediocre statistically, but given that they’re on the field for most of the game, they’re better than advertised. Their offense is less-than-mediocre but they’re still only a few teams back of the Ravens in the standings.
Ravens: All signs point to Boller starting despite the airwaves clamoring for Troy Smith’s first start. The Ravens are mired in a 7 game losing streak and will face a very motivated and angry team. Defensively the boys in purple look like a M*A*S*H unit. Only McGahee stands out on an offense that is total poop.
The Game: This could be a low point in the history of Baltimore football. My first memory of the Colts consists of images of Mayflower moving vans, so we’ll have to keep that one at the top of the list, but Sunday’s matchup certainly has the potential to come in at a solid #2. To whom is a loss here not a foregone conclusion? I’m sure there are those that would argue that the Ravens can’t possibly lose to a winless team, but I can’t wait to see the line from Vegas. I’m not sold that the line won’t be a pick’em…
At this point, Billick’s popularity in Baltimore is right below Osama bin Laden. It’s hard to argue that his performance this season has been anything short of a disaster. The play-calling is horrendous. We’d probably fare no worse running Navy’s triple option.
Folks, he’s not going anywhere. He’s got a 4-year extension. Bisciotti can’t erase the memory of a 13-3 season after one injury-riddled season despite this campaign’s total, complete, utter failure.
The Bill Cowher rumors continue to circulate, but my sources tell me that we’re just as likely to see Vince Lombardi on the sidelines.
So what’s gonna be the outcome? I say we’ll see double-secret probation in the form of a mandated new Offensive Coordinator, but one thing is for sure: a loss to the “Phins may turn that into a triple-not-so-secret dismissal.
Rick Neuheisel anyone?