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Ravens News 11/22: Edwards focused, stats to know and more

Cincinnati Bengals v Baltimore Ravens Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

Orlando Brown Jr.’s late father predicted his future with the Ravens - Lisa Redmond

Rookie offensive tackle Orlando Brown Jr.’s future with the Baltimore Ravens was predicted long before he was drafted in the third-round of the 2018 NFL Draft.

His father Orlando “Zeus” Brown, who played the same position for the Ravens from 1996-98 and again in 2003-05, saw in Brown Jr. what he saw in himself.

In an NFL Films feature ‘Son of Zeus,’ Brown Jr. recalls being at the Ravens’ training facility with his father at a young age.

”We were leaving and he was just like, you know, ‘you’re going to end up back here’ and ‘it’s gonna happen dog’ and ‘i just foresee it,’ Brown Jr. said.

Orlando Brown Jr. has started the last four games at right tackle and appears poised to be a foundational player for future Ravens rosters.

Meet Gus Edwards, the Ravens’ Soft-Spoken, Hard-Running Rookie Running Back - Clifton Brown

Don’t expect Edwards to be fazed by the sudden attention or the teasing. Whether he’s deflecting jokes or shedding tacklers, Edwards comes off about as low-key as you can get. He often answers questions with the brevity of a tweet – 140 characters or less.

But Edwards loudly announced himself to the NFL world Sunday with 115 yards on 17 carries, including an 11-yard touchdown run and a two-point conversion run in the Ravens’ 24-21 victory.

How did Edwards celebrate his best NFL game to date?

“Celebrate?” Edwards said. “Nah, it’s just one game. We’re in the season. We don’t have time to celebrate.”

He went to Rutgers as a graduate transfer in 2017 to be closer to family in New York and had his best college season (713 yards on 164 carries), putting himself on the radar for the draft. But after going undrafted, Edwards signed as a free agent with the Ravens partly due to the relationship he built with Running Backs Coach Thomas Hammock during the draft process.

“I got comfortable with Coach Thomas and felt this was a good spot to come to,” Edwards said. “It’s been great. He knows a lot about the game. He’s made me better. I’m just trying to take everything that he’s teaching me.”

Based on testing measurables, Gus Edwards is strikingly similar to Leonard Fournette in terms of size, speed and explosiveness. Statistically, the undrafted rookie has gained nearly twice as many yards per carry as the power back that was drafted #4 overall in 2017.

John Harbaugh to critics: Ravens ‘not dead ... sorry’ - Jamison Hensley

John Harbaugh delivered a message to those who have written off the Baltimore Ravens:

”Nothing is over, so all of you guys who counted us out, we aren’t out. We’re not dead. Sorry.”

“Anybody who thinks that we have it clinched, no. No way,” Harbaugh said. “It’s going to be the teams that play the best, the teams that play the best football the next six weeks, starting this week, and that’s going to be our focus.”

“The first thing Coach Harbaugh said when we got back Monday was don’t worry about the outside noise,” middle linebacker C.J. Mosley said. “We can only control what we can control. We did a great job to win this game [against the Bengals], but it doesn’t mean anything unless we win this week.”

Hensley notes that 39-percent of nine win teams in the AFC have reached the playoffs over the last five seasons.

Baltimore Ravens vs. Oakland Raiders: 4 stats to know before Week 12 matchup - Aaron Kasinitz

The Raiders’ defense allows 8.4 yards per pass attempt, the most in the NFL

Why it matters Sunday

If Jackson makes his second career start Sunday, the Ravens might want to give him a chance to prove his worth as a passer (Jackson had 117 rushing yards and 150 passing yards against Cincinnati). In the case, finding a rhythm against Oakland shouldn’t be too daunting of a task. And if veteran Joe Flacco returns from a right hip injury this week to reclaim the starting job, he’ll have a soft landing spot against the Raiders.

The Ravens are 5-0 when they allow 330 or fewer yards

Why it matters Sunday

The Raiders, led by quarterback David Carr, rank 23rd in the NFL with an average of 347 yards per game but have topped that 330 mark just once in the past six games. If Baltimore’s defense can keep Oakland’s offense in a bit of rut, the team should be in good shape.

Baltimore could reasonably claim an advantage over Oakland in all five phases of the game - passing offense, rushing offense, passing defense, run defense and special teams. Nonetheless, turnovers are the great equalizer. A patient offensive game-plan would be sensible at home against this weak opponent.