Following last week's disappointing loss to the Buffalo Bills, the Baltimore Ravens went into Miami with a chip on their shoulders. Historically speaking, the Baltimore Ravens are 3-0 the week following a game where Joe Flacco throws 3+ interceptions, this impressive statistic continued this week as the Ravens held on to a late lead to escape Sun Life Stadium with a win; improving their record to 3-2.
Despite early struggles with the running game, the performance of Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce proved to pivotal in today's win as the duo combined for 148 of the Ravens' 384 total offensive yards with Ray Rice reaching paydirt twice. While the run-blocking still looked highly questionable, it was encouraging to see the coaches commit to the running game until they saw some moderate success.
The commitment to running the ball helped open up play-action passing opportunities for Joe Flacco who threw for a total of 264 yards, no touchdowns and lobbed up a pick-six late in the game. Despite failing to throw for a touchdown, we saw Flacco play with an increased trust in his receivers not named Torrey Smith today (namely Deonte Thompson and Tandon Doss) which helped put the Ravens in many situations to score the ball.
The defense was absolutely incredible today, contrary to the final score. The terrorizing duo of Terrell Suggs and Elvis Dumervil combined for four of the Ravens' six combined sacks. Something worth noting, after today's career performance, Terrell Suggs has broken the 90 career sacks milestones.
Equally as effective as the pass-rush, the run-defense. After allowing a a ridiculously high 203 rushing yards last week against the Bills, the Ravens allowed a measly 22 combined rushing yards.
And then of course, there's Justin Tucker. What else can you really say about this guy other than he is as clutch as they come? Connecting on all four of his attempts, Justin Tucker was lights-out the entire game, most notably drilling a 44-yarder with under two minutes left in the fourth quarter to give the Ravens the lead.
While work still needs to be done if this team is to be considered a legitimate threat to repeat this season, there was not too much to complain about today. This was a well-fought statement win for the Baltimore Ravens who are now still in the middle of a three-way tie for first place atop the AFC North.
As always, thank you guys for joining us today and making Baltimore Beatdown your source of live gameday coverage. Jason will put up a full recap later tonight, but until then feel free to discuss today's win here. I hope you guys have a terrific Sunday evening and enjoy the rest of your day.