Ravens To Face Best Secondary In League

Peter Aiken - Getty Images

The high flying Ravens passing attack will get a true test this week at home against the best secondary in the league (statistically) so far.

Defensive coordinator Rob Ryan has the Dallas Cowboys passing defense rated atop the league so far in 2012. Much of that is very contingent upon the pass rush doing it's job but never the less it will be a tall order for the Baltimore Ravens receivers to create separation tomorrow.

At corner the Cowboys start Brandon Carr a free agent signing from Kansas City and Morris Claiborne, the teams first round draft pick from this year. Both are big and physical and are comfortable in man and press coverage. The nickel corner will most likely be Michael Jenkins. The Cowboys will also be starting a duo at safety of former Raven Mano Silva and Danny McCray. None of these players has had an interception yet this season and none have more than 13 tackles (McCray) but as a unit they have been outstanding.

So, the question is, what will the Ravens to do attack this group and how will they deal with the pass pressure of DeMarcus Ware and company up front?

The easy answer would be to start off the game with a heavy dose of Ray Rice and Vonta Leach. From there they could mix in some play action and hopefully catch some safeties off guard or exploit a mismatch or two with audibles at the line. However Joe Flacco and Cam Cameron seem to be dead set on running the no/sugar huddle at home where the crowd noise won't be a factor for their offense.

With that in mind, what the Ravens should do is work a lot of bunch formations with men in motion. They also have the advantage at tight end where they have two big bodied pass catching TE's that could most certainly be match up problems for the Cowboys if they elect to cover one of them with a safety or linebacker.

We all know that Torrey Smith and/or Jacoby Jones is going to get some deep balls thrown his way and we all know that Anquan Boldin will usually be in the slot and try to use his strength to get open and make yards after the catch but let's hope that if Dallas comes out with a scheme that the receivers and offense are not ready for that they are able to adjust early and often instead of waiting till half time to do it.

The Ravens have a plethora of play-makers on the offensive side of the ball and no team should be able to stop them all. We will simply need to see how the Cowboys react to the formations we run early and base our game plan off of that.

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