The Baltimore Ravens had their most impressive win of the season on Sunday defeating the previously undefeated New England Patriots. Amazingly, the Ravens always seemed in control of the game after jumping out to an early lead. As a result, they are once again on the rise in the power rankings with all 5 outlets ranking them in the top 5.
ESPN placed the Ravens at number 4. Curiously, they expressed concerns with the pass rush for a second consecutive week.
The Ravens have done a better job at getting to the quarterback recently, making Russell Wilson and Tom Brady very uncomfortable in the pocket. But all that pressure -- which has come via a lot of blitzing -- hasn’t resulted in many sacks. Baltimore has the fifth-fewest sacks, ahead of only the Jets, Dolphins, Bengals and Falcons -- who have combined for a 3-29 record. The Ravens need to do a better job at getting the quarterback to the ground when facing the likes of Deshaun Watson, Jared Goff and Jimmy Garoppolo in the second half of the season. -- Jamison Hensley
CBS Sports was the highest on the team this week moving them up to number 3. In fact, they even ranked the Ravens higher than the Patriots, which is something no other power ranking did this week.
Lamar Jackson is a legitimate MVP candidate. What they did to New England was impressive.
Sports Illustrated moved the Ravens up to number 4, and one of their voters had them as the number 1 team this week.
Lamar Jackson dazzled on Sunday night as the Ravens handed the Patriots their first loss of the season. Plays like this helped, but so did Baltimore’s physicality; the team rushed for 210 yards and more than doubled the next-best point total scored against New England’s top-ranked defense this season.
Yahoo also placed the Ravens at number 4 and noted that Lamar Jackson is now clearly in the MVP race.
Who is the second-best skill position player on the Ravens? Mark Andrews? Mark Ingram? When Lamar Jackson’s MVP candidacy is discussed — and he is clearly in the race — it should also be noted that he doesn’t have a superstar or two around him. He’s carrying this offense.
NFL.com’s power rankings agreed with the consensus by putting the Ravens 4th overall. They only had Baltimore at number 10 the past two weeks, but they now seemed convinced after Sunday's victory.
The Ravens welcomed the undefeated Patriots into their house on Sunday night and showed them how different life can be when you face a legit Super Bowl contender. That’s exactly what Baltimore looked like in a convincing 37-20 win. The turning point came midway through the third quarter, after Tom Brady answered a Marlon Humphrey fumble-return TD with a commanding touchdown drive against a gassed Baltimore defense. On the ensuing possession, Lamar Jackson and the Ravens were facing third-and-5 -- you got the feeling that if Baltimore would have gone three-and-out, New England could have taken control of the game. Instead, Jackson gained 18 yards on a pass to Mark Andrews then closed out the 14-play march with a scoring strike to Nick Boyle. The Pats never threatened again. Jackson ran for two touchdowns and threw for another against a New England defense that’s been hailed as Bill Belichick’s best. Those MVP chants are earned.
As for the rest of the AFC North, the Steelers were on the rise after defeating the Colts; Brian Hoyer filled in for Jacoby Brissett at quarterback. They came in anywhere from 17th to 19th. The Browns are still far behind after another loss with 24th being their highest placing this week. Meanwhile, the winless Bengals were the bottom placed team in 4 out of 5 rankings.
The Ravens will look to keep their momentum going in a favorable matchup against the Bengals this Sunday.