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Ravens vs. Bengals: 3 offensive keys to victory

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NFL: Baltimore Ravens at Cincinnati Bengals Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

Not to sound overtly John Madden, but the Ravens must score points to win against the Cincinnati Bengals today, in order to win. They’ve done so these past few weeks, but the Bengals are ones to give the Ravens fits. Good news, for the Ravens at least, multiple Bengals players are out for this game, including Vontaze Burfict.

1. Protect Joe Flacco

Over the past few weeks, Joe Flacco has impressed all. Just like we all forget, year after year, he plays sloppy through the first eight games, enjoys a bye week, then surges through and puts up numbers on the back half of the schedule. But this offensive line is make or break with the team. Keep Joe upright, and he’ll find the open man.

2. Protect the rock

Nothing will ruin this game like vital mistakes. All it takes is a sloppy carry from Alex Collins, or a stripped ball on Mike Wallace to turn this game from 7-0 to 7-14 real quick. Baltimore cannot afford to lose this game, and every mistake is under a microscope. Those errant throws from Joe cannot fall into Bengals’ hands. Tighten up and finish this season with a W and an entry into the postseason.

3. Penalty free

All season, this offense has done fairly well when it comes to pre-snap penalties. Continue this trend tomorrow and don’t give away yardage. Keep the other penalties, including holding and personal fouls out of this. The Bengals are an emotional bunch, and if they can start fights and get anybody to swing and lose the yards and game, they will. Stay cool, and beat them on the scoreboard.