As the Baltimore Ravens prepare this week for the New England Patriots, I think the game plan should be simple; get back to the basics. Our dear member, raven, put it best in a comment on a previous post where he said: "Cam is willing to trade an entire series for one shot at the end zone. Much of the time resulting in a 3-and-outs putting a tired D back on the field." That seems to be our biggest offensive problem this year. We try to go for style over substance, and often times come up short. This forces our defense to come back on the field almost immediately after they come off. The only break they seem to get is the commercial break. That is simply unacceptable.
(More after the "Jump"...)
Let's not let the fact that the Patriots have one of the worst defenses in the NFL throw us off. We have one of the most inconsistent offenses in the NFL. And if you aren't moving the ball consistently, the fact that they have one of the worst defenses in the NFL means just about nothing. And they aren't 14-3 this year for nothing, they have such a potent offense that they can score on just about every drive to make up for what they lack on defense.
So what do we do counter this? As I said earlier, we have to get back to the basics. We need to feed the ball to Rice about 20-25 times, run quick slant routes with Boldin and Evans, and experiment with the deep ball. We can't try to throw the deep ball on every drive and become predictable. We should throw it up to Evans or Smith a few times in the first quarter, and if doesn't work ABANDON IT. Too often we find Cam Cameron giving up on what works on offense for what he wants to work.This results in our offense becoming stagnant.
Whatever we have to do to keep the Patriots offense off of the field, and rest our defense as well, we need to do it. We can't allow Tom Brady to beat us. So the solution? Keep him off the field. We should not rely on our defense to win this game for us. We have to manage long clock-devouring drives that result in points, not 3-and-outs. And when the Patriots do have the ball, we have to do everything possible to stop it.