Mid-Preseason Evaluations: The Bad

Tandon Doss attempting to catch a pass against the Atlanta Falcons. - Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

A look at who isn't playing very well halfway through the preseason.

The Baltimore Ravens have played two preseason games, half of their preseason schedule. Yesterday we looked at the players that have been doing well, now it's time to look at the players doing not-so-well.

  • Jimmy Smith: CB Jimmy Smith has to be the most obvious player on this list. The coverage in Falcons game was much below par. Smith let Julio Jones, mainly, get right by him and catch the ball with ease. Jones ended the game with three receptions for 55 yards and a touchdown, mostly because of the awful coverage by Jimmy Smith. Smith didn't play too bad last year, in fact, the Ravens needed him in the Super Bowl when it came to the famous goal-line stand against the San Francisco 49ers. He needs to perform like he did last year, and get over whatever Super Bowl hangover he might be on. Even last year was not the best showing of skills by a cornerback, but he was able to get the Ravens to the Super Bowl, and that's all that matters. Step it up, Smith.
  • Tandon Doss: The third-year receiver that has said to be in the competition for the number three wide receiver spot really isn't showing it. Doss may have scored a touchdown in the game against the Falcons, but other than that, he really hasn't been playing well. There have been many times where Doss drops the ball, can't get to the ball in time, or grabs the ball and fumbles it. (Happened in Atlanta game. Doss caught the ball, ran a step or two, got hit, and lost the ball. The officials reviewed it and overturned it, stating that he did not have full possession of the ball. Doss got lucky on that one.) If Tandon Doss really wants to make the team this year, he is going to have to show that he has improved. As of now, I don't see any improvement from Doss, whatsoever.
  • Visanthe Shiancoe: Since the Ravens are relying on guys like Shiancoe to replace Dennis Pitta and Ed Dickson, for the time being, it isn't good that he is on this list. Shiancoe may have made a nice play here or there, but he drops the ball like it's going out of style. There has been a total of five drops in two games by the veteran tight end. If the Ravens are counting on Shiancoe to be their crucial third-down guy, forget about it. He has had three receptions for 27 yards, but it should really be around seven or eight receptions for many more yards. These drops by Shiancoe are not going to cut it, and if he is the one that has to replace Pitta, it may be a bumpy ride for the Ravens this season at the tight end position.
  • A.Q. Shipley: It is bad that in an ongoing center competition, one of the guys is on this list, and the other is not. Center A.Q. Shipley got the start against the Atlanta Falcons on Thursday, but he didn't do a very great job. Shipley wasn't blocking well, got a multitude of penalties called on him, and didn't show that he really wanted to be the starting center for the Ravens. He is one of the main reasons why the offensive line didn't play very well in the Atlanta game, and that is just the truth. The center competition may be ending earlier than expected, as Gradkowski seems to be the favorite to win it after the not-so-great performance on Thursday night by A.Q. Shipley.
  • Entire Offensive Line: Aside from Shipley, I really don't need to call out any other individual offensive lineman. I need to call out the line as a whole. This is mainly from the game against the Falcons, but overall, the offensive line isn't playing well at all. The run game is terrible, the penalties aren't good, and the protection of the quarterback is iffy. The Ravens rushed for 61 yards on 26 attempts, not a truly good number. The offensive line let multiple defensive linemen run right through them, making it easy for the running backs to get smashed earlier than they should have. The only successful runner in the Falcons game was quarterback Tyrod Taylor, and even he wasn't able to rush for more than a total of 15 yards on five attempts. The offensive line may have the excuse of not having Marshal Yanda back yet, but they still need to show that they know how block for running backs, protect the quarterback, and not let the defense get the best of them.
  • Joe Flacco: I said it. Quarterback Joe Flacco isn't performing the way that I would like so far in the preseason. Flacco is 14/18 with 175 yards, a touchdown, and two interceptions. His accuracy and 175 yards aren't looking too bad, but his numbers still aren't impressive. Of course, Flacco has played a total of three quarters in two games, not even the length of a full NFL game. The main thing that sticks out to me is the number of interceptions. In the first game against the Buccaneers, he basically threw it right to Danny Gorrer. In the second game, he tried to fit a ball into a tight window to Jacoby Jones, it bounced of the thigh of a defender, and fell right into the hands of Asante Samuel. Joe Flacco needs to start making smarter throws, and I know it's only preseason, but he is not playing as well as many people would like to see.
There are obviously more players that aren't playing very well, but these are the main ones that I have seen. If you have any other suggestions of players to go on this list, tell me, and I'll add them in!

To check out the list of the players that are playing good, click here.
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