Quarterback Joe Flacco ended the game just shy of 300 yards, but his interceptions showed the version of Flacco that we've seen this season. Both interceptions were lofted passes that got more air under them than necessary and were 5-yards off their intended targets. On one, Flacco missed a wide open Crockett Gillmore that would have had a 30+ yard completion had it been on point, and could have possibly turned it into a touchdown if he beat the safety.
When Flacco was not throwing interceptions, he made just flat out bad decisions. The one that sticks out in my mind is the 4th and 11 where Flacco threw the dumpoff pass that gained only 4 yards and had no shot of ever getting the first down. The completion was made, but the Ravens turned over the ball on downs at a time when they clearly needed to keep the drive alive.
In the end, Flacco finished with a well deserved 70.2 quarterback rating and was not the player that won the Super Bowl not too long ago.
The Ravens made a commitment early to the run and it paid off. Despite having an offensive line that was starting a second-year backup center and third-year backup left guard, and eventually James Hurst at left tackle for an injured Eugene Monroe, the Ravens got it done on the ground when they needed to.
The injury to starting running back Justin Forsett clearly took it's toll on the team's emotions, but rookie rusher Javorius Allen came in and performed well. Even though Allen finished with 67 yards on 22 carries for 3 yards per carry, a lot of his troubles were due to a dominant Rams defensive line getting penetration. Several times both Allen and Forsett carried defenders for extra yards and showed that the renewed commitment to the run game was well founded.
Javorius Allen in specific showed power, speed, patience and the vision necessary to be the starting running back for the remainder of the season with Forsett likely out.
Tight End: B
Tight end Crockett Gillmore continued to show his dominance in the passing game as he hauled in 5 catches for 101 yards. Had Flacco been more accurate, that total could have been nearer to 150 yards and a touchdown. Maxx Williams even showed up in the game, flashing some of the development he's had through the year. Williams would catch 3 passes for only 20 yards, but found holes in the Rams' zone coverage and showed the ability to take a hit after the catch.
The main issue that keeps the grade from being higher is the poor blocking both Williams and Gillmore displayed. While going up against one of the better defensive lines in the league, they were asked to assist the tackles and chip block. Penalties and down right bad blocking put the Ravens at a disadvantage several times throughout the game.
Wide Receiver: C
Many fans and analysts expected that the wide receiver corps would immediately fall on it's face following the placement of veteran receiver Steve Smith Sr. on injured reserve. Yet, this unit came through well at times against the Rams, especially when it was needed at the end of the game. Kamar Aiken led the receivers with 5 catches and 50 yards along with a score in the back of the endzone, finding the open spot and keeping his feet in bounds.
Jeremy Butler also showed some flashes, having caught 4 passes for 45 yards. Used primarily underneath, Butler found soft spots and used his speed to turn catches upfield for additional yards. Chris Givens going up against his old team was pretty much taken out of the game. Some of that was due to quarterback Joe Flacco just being off target, but Givens was mostly a no-show having caught only 2 passes for 25 yards.
Still a work in progress for the whole unit, but the Ravens got good effort at the end of the game.
Offensive line: D
The offensive line faced their toughest test of the season, going against one of the best defensive lines in the game right now. That test was made even harder as center Jeremy Zuttah was placed on season ending injured reserve earlier in the week. As the inactives list came down, it was learned that Ryan Jensen would be taking over for the inactive Kelechi Osemele at left guard. As if that wasn't bad enough, backup left tackle James Hurst made another appearance as Eugene Monroe left the game with a shoulder injury.
With the entire left side of the offensive line being replaced, they did well enough. At times, holes were opened for the running attack, but allowed 4 tackles for losses as Aaron Donald in specific dominated the game and the center of the offensive line several times. They also allowed quarterback Joe Flacco to be abused despite only allowing 1 sack, in part the reason that Flacco has a season ending ACL injury.
Penalties were the biggest headache for this unit as they were the main culprits for the 137 yards in penalties the Ravens grabbed.