Sunday against the New York Jets will be a gut check game for the Baltimore Ravens. Three game losing streak. Back to back road games. Heavy wind possible. Nearly half of the team’s starters unable to play from injury, or will may be playing at well below full strength. The Ravens will be forced to dig deep.
Despite the Ravens uninspiring play this season, they have still been much better than the Jets. This game sets up as a prime opportunity to pull out a needed win before regrouping over the bye week. My guess is the defense does just enough to close out a tight win.
Dennis Pitta will score his first touchdown of the season
No matter who is lined up behind or beside center Jeremy Zuttah, the Ravens will try to get the ball out of the quarterback’s hand quickly. Pitta will be the recipient of many of these short and intermediate passes. So far this season, tight ends Travis Kelce and Jesse James found paydirt and Jimmy Graham led Seattle in receiving against the Jets.
Ravens will hold Matt Forte below 25 rushing yards
Forte has been bottled up in two of the last three games, barely averaging two yards per carry against Seattle and Arizona. The Ravens have earned the top run defense rank in the league by allowing less than 70 total team rushing yards per game. Brandon Williams, Timmy Jernigan, Michael Pierce and friends should manhandle the Jets banged-up line.
Eric Weddle will secure an interception
Geno Smith is expected to replace Ryan Fitzpatrick at quarterback after Fitzpatrick threw eleven interceptions during the first six games. In 32 games, Smith has thrown 36 interceptions, including one in garbage time on Monday. Weddle has been the NFL’s best safety in coverage this season, according to Pro Football Focus, and uses his instincts to seemingly always be around the ball.