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Defensive Shortcomings

Last year the Ravens offense could rely on getting the ball with a short field due to the defense creating turnovers and winning the battle for field position. It looks like this year's offense will need to take matters into their own hands, and it hasn't looked promising so far. The 2007 version of the Ravens defense bears very little resemblence to the 2006 #1 rated defense. At this time last year, the Ravens already feared defense had 17 sacks and nine interceptions, compared to 2007's nine sacks and four interceptions. The difference between 2006's 4-1 record and 2007's 3-2 record might seem minimal, but recall that last season the Ravens had already beaten San Diego and shut out Tampa Bay on the road. As I've said in earlier columns, the only defensive stat that truly matters is points allowed. The 2006 team had given up only 46 points through the first five games, while this year's version has already allowed 72 points. I'm not usually a betting man, but the Ravens have not covered the spread in any games so far this season. Which Ravens team will show up Sunday versus the Rams? We'll discuss that later this week.