Bengals coach Marvin Lewis strolled into his post-game media press conference at M&T Bank Stadium on Monday night and didn’t look all that concerned about the battering his defense took in a 44-13 drubbing at the hands of the Ravens.
I must have watched a different game than he did from the sidelines.
“We weren’t bothered by the (Ravens) no-huddle, we just didn’t make any plays,” he claimed.
I guess that’s one way of trying to justify a game with no turnovers created, which the Bengals defense didn’t do on Monday night.
From my vantage point, I saw a Bengals defense unprepared for the next play in front of them. Time and time again, the Bengals failed to put any pressure on Joe Flacco and the 5th year quarterback picked them apart with ease, going early and often to a host of pass catchers, including Jacoby Jones and Anquan Boldin, who caught a 2nd quarter TD pass.
It all started off magically for the Ravens. The season’s first offensive play for Baltimore was a 52-yard completion from Joe Flacco to Torrey Smith, a sign of things to come for the rest of the night. The victim was Leon Hall, who took his fair share of humiliation on Monday along with the rest of the Cincinnati secondary. Flacco looked polished, assertive and hungry, picking apart the Bengals with throws both across the middle and deep down the field. It was, Lewis hopes, perhaps a case of opening night nerves for the visitors, but the Ravens offense moved the ball at will throughout most of the evening.
Interestingly enough, the Cincy offense rattled off three consecutive long drives in the second and third quarters, going for 76, 79 and 81 yards en route to collecting their 13 points. It’s rare that a Ravens defense allows three drives of that nature, but Baltimore wasn’t exactly the ’85 Bears on Monday night, as they put little outside pressure on Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton and didn’t stop the run with the kind of regularity we might have expected.
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