I give Ravens running back Terrance West a lot of credit for his post game interview comments after yesterday’s bitter loss to the Redskins. A reporter asked him if he wished he had carried the ball more in the second half, and he replied “that’s not for me to say” or “that’s not my call” – something along those lines. I thought it was a very heady and professional response to a loaded question, and I give him a lot of credit for his mature and proper answer.
Time and time again I’ve said ad nauseam that the Baltimore Ravens offensive profile is not for quarterback Joe Flacco to put the ball up 50 times. It’s not even in their profile to put it up 40 times. Check their won-loss record when they’ve done that, and you’ll see that the outcome more often than not hasn’t been good.
No one understood why the Ravens stopped running the ball. After listening to the post-game press conference I am not sure the coaching staff had a grasp as to why either. I don’t care if in the second half the Redskins loaded up the box to stop West, but I would think that the Ravens would have made them prove it before actually scrapping the run.
Oh…..as I’m typing this, I just got a text from my WNST text service that “Ravens fire offensive coordinator Marc Trestman and will replace him with Marty Mornhinweg, according to ESPN.” There you go. Five weeks into the season and a head has rolled. Hopefully Mornhinweg will succeed where Trestman has failed. At a bare minimum the offense should have a different energy when they meet the Giants this Sunday.
I am by no means done with my analysis. I know coach John Harbaugh by nature is aggressive with his decisions, but when he elected to have kicker Justin Tucker attempt a pass into a crosswind, he left himself open to second-guessing and criticism. Had Tucker nailed the field goal, the Ravens – theoretically speaking – would have been down 13-16 and would have only needed a short field goal to extend the game to overtime, where they would have given themselves a chance to win. With the Ravens defense playing well overall, I would have taken the points coach.
I also didn’t like coach Harbaugh’s criticism of C.J. Mosley. He said that the linebacker should have secured the ball. I can’t blame a player for trying to make a play in that situation. He got the pick, saw the end zone, got big eyes and went for it. Maybe the defense was frustrated and pressing and knew it had to score because it lacked confidence that the offense could. Either way, I do not pin this loss on the players as much as I do on the coaching staff.
There was a cascading of boos from the Ravens’ fan base as the game wore on. We know bad football when we see it. We recognize bad decisions when we see them. Never mind the fast start. Never mind the possibility of being 5-0. This team is 3-2, and at this point we’d settle for 4-3 after our Giants and Jets road trip. But 3-4 and a four game losing streak is real possibility.
I said last week that the game against the Redskins was at a minimum a “pivotal” game. It was and unfortunately the team pivoted in the wrong direction. This was a very winnable game against an opponent that wasn’t very good. The game was there for the taking and the Ravens let it slip away. Hopefully Trestman’s departure will serve as a wake up call for the entire organization.