Just a short post today to list my thought on how the Ravens can defeat the Dolphins for a rare road victory to ge this team back on track to .500 and set up a home game the following week against the Raiders and a good chance at a 4-3 record.
Of course, knowing the Ravens history on the road the past year or so, as well as last year's debacle in Miami, along with our recent meltdowns (Pittsburgh, Tennessee) and beatdowns (Indy), this is far from a sure thing. In fact, the Dolphins are listed as a three point favorite, which is a pretty rare occurance for them as well.
Here's my 10 part game plan for victory:
1. Run the damn ball. You don't need to prove to the world that you are a great offensive coordinator and cross everyone (including the Ravens) up by passing so much. Run McGahee (until he ultimately once again gets injured) and Rice of tackle and around the edge, but especially pound Le'Ron McClain behind Lorenzo Neal between the tackles, over and over and over again, until their front seven (or eight) wear down in the fourth quarter. Then run it some more.
2. Throw the ball downfield. But only a little bit, not all the time, Cam! Try throwing it to the middle of the field, rather than the sidelines and only in the flats. For a novel approach, try throwing to a wide receiver running towards the goal line instead of having him stop and wait with his back to the goal line like we always do. Look for Demetrius Williams across the middle or long as he is our gamerbreaker. How about more throws to Todd Heap, as he certainly is no help staying in and pass blocking!?
3. Joe, if you roll out, don't throw it to the other guys. Either throw it out of bounds or tuck it in and run, but then remember to slide. The other guys hit a lot harder than Delaware's opponents!
4. Chris McAlister: don't look at the QB and go for the pump fake! Let Reed jump the route, you cover the receiver. Let Pennington pick on the other side of the secondary. We need to be able to rely on you shutting your guy down so we can focus on giving the other corner (Walker, Ivy) the help they obviously need.
5. T-Sizzle & Bart Scott: Shut up and play! Rush the passer and force him to throw too early and let our secondary pick him off. After we win, then you can talk. Also, remember that the refs are watching you, so don't breathe on the opponents and certainly not the QB after the play is over. Enough of the personal fouls!
6. Offensive Line: Move your damn feet! Those pass rushers like to run around you, so block them way to the outside and don't stop once Flacco runs outside.
7. Matt Stover: Get well soon, hit one from 40+ yards, put a kickoff in the end zone, or,...start looking over your shoulder.
8. Ray: Get 'em psyched! Don't stop getting in their faces and telling them they can do it. Keep up the incredible work and put another RB on the sidelines!
9. Cam: Open up the playbook. You've been so conservative and predictable to me up in the stands or on my couch. If I can figure you out, imagine what the other teams are doing? Take the cuffs off of Flacco and give him a longer leash. A trick play could give us some quick points and a dose of needed confidence. Lord knows the Dolphins will pull one out of their sleeves!
10. Coach Harbaugh: If it's a close play in the end zone, throw the Red Flag. If it's fourth and goal from the one, go for it! Don't punt from inside the opponents' 40. Get in your player's faces if they draw another unsportsmanlike penalty!
There it is. Mix it all together and walla, you have a Ravens victory. Your thoughts?