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Ravens News 11/6: Real contenders, defensive notes and more

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New England Patriots v Baltimore Ravens Photo by Will Newton/Getty Images

History Shows Patriots May Be Prone to Losing to Ravens Again in Postseason - Devon Clements

But this 8-1 Patriots team has a lot to worry about going forward, not just because of the opponents they have to face going forward in the regular season, but because of the AFC rival they may have to face again in the postseason.

The one loss on New England’s record came at the hands of the Baltimore Ravens, who beat them on primetime football in Week 9 by a score of 37-20. Lamar Jackson and company had their way with the Patriots defense, rushing for 210 yards as a team and three total touchdowns.

Per NFL Research, New England is 3-6 in playoff rematches versus teams they lost to in the same regular season since 2001. More importantly, over the past five such games, the Patriots are 0-5. The two most recent games were the 2015 AFC Championship game against the Denver Broncos and the [2012] AFC Championship game against the Ravens.

Defensive Notes vs Patriots 11/3/19 - Ken McKusick

Pass Rush Gambles Pay Off

Brady had ATS on 24 of 48 drop backs (50%). That’s a high total by today’s NFL standards, but the Ravens still made him uncomfortable with 10 QHs and held him to a QBR of just 80.4 with only 2 plays over 18 yards. I doubt there are more than a handful of times in his long career where Tom Brady has been knocked down 10 times without a single flag being thrown on the defense.

The Ravens had a season-high 10 deceptive pass rushes on Sunday night.

It is reasonable to look at this as 2.2 YPP, so Martindale gets the highest marks for the deception risks he took.

Defensive MVPs

1. Earl Thomas

2. Michael Pierce

3. Patrick Onwuasor

Honorable mentions were earned by Marlon Humphrey, Matthew Judon, and Jimmy Smith.

If You Still Aren’t Buying that the Ravens are Real Contenders, What More Do You Need to See? - John Eisenberg

The Ravens didn’t just beat two of the NFL’s best teams. They whipped the Seahawks by 14 points and the Patriots by 17 points. Lamar Jackson deservedly dominated the headlines, but the offensive and defensive lines dominated and the defense featured a nasty streak of opportunism while forcing less-than-stellar outings from two of the league’s top quarterbacks.

Bottom line, I don’t know how the Ravens’ season will proceed from here -- their schedule is challenging. But after these past two wins, we no longer need to ask whether the Ravens can match up with top opponents. A better question is whether those opponents match up with the Ravens.

‘An All-Pro year’: Baltimore Ravens’ Marlon Humphrey draws high praise from teammates - Aaron Kasinitz

“Marlon’s just living right,” six-time Pro Bowl safety Earl Thomas said. “He’s having an All-Pro year.”

Added outside linebacker Matthew Judon: “Marlon has been, week in and week out, our best player.”

“The focus, execution that he does … it’s paying off for that guy,” Judon said. “I love ‘Marlo.’ I’m so happy for him. I’m so happy I get to watch him.”

Humphrey said this summer he needed to produce game-altering plays to begin receiving more prominent accolades. Then he spent the first half of the season doing exactly that.

The combination of sturdy coverage and the takeaways has made it difficult to ignore Humphrey’s rise toward glory.

Week 9 DVOA Ratings - Aaron Schatz

Filling out the top nine are three unbalanced teams that rank in the top six on offense but 20th or worse on defense. You might be surprised to see Baltimore only move up one spot to No. 7 after the convincing win over New England. Special teams is the big difference between the Ravens and the next two teams: Green Bay at No. 8 and Seattle at No. 9.