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Ravens News 10/26: Broken Coverage and more

Cincinnati Bengals v Baltimore Ravens Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images

At 5-2, the Ravens are in good shape in the standings. It’s everything else that’s a concern - Jeff Zrebiec

Still, after a performance like Sunday’s, it’s impossible to overlook the team’s current flaws and wonder frankly if it’s good enough to go on the late-season runs that we saw in 2019 and 2020.

It starts up front, where the run and pass blocking have been spotty at best, and that was before the Ravens lost Patrick Mekari, a revelation at right tackle this season, to a foot injury early Sunday. Through seven games, Jackson has been sacked 21 times. That’s two more through seven games last year and four more through the same span in 2019. The Ravens have rushed for 1,046 yards, 205 fewer than they had at this point last year.

Then there’s the defense. Burrow became the third opposing quarterback in seven games to put up more than 400 yards passing against the Ravens, who clearly miss Marcus Peters. For the season, the Ravens have allowed 2,073 yards passing, the most in that span in franchise history.

It’s not just breakdowns in coverage, either. The Ravens aren’t tackling receivers after the catch. Add that to the occasional lapse in run defense and the Ravens are giving up just under 24 points per game with plenty of good offensive opponents left on their schedule.

The Ravens’ defense was historically bad in a blowout loss to the Bengals. Just look at the numbers. - Ryan McFadden

The Ravens’ 41-17 defeat at home was not only their worst loss since Jackson took over as the starter in 2018, but it was the first time they’ve allowed that many points since 2013, when they lost to the New England Patriots, 41-7. According to ESPN, the Bengals’ point total was the second-most the Ravens have allowed in series history, and the loss also marked the seventh time the Ravens allowed 41 points or more at home.

The Bengals are just the second team ever to score 40 or more points and gain 400 or more passing yards against the Ravens, according to Pro Football Reference.

The Bengals dominated on both sides of the ball. Cincinnati recorded five sacks and seven quarterback hits throughout the afternoon. According to the NFL’s Next Gen Stats, the Bengals generated a 48.9% pressure rate, the team’s highest in the past two seasons.

Defensive Notes Week 7 Bengals @ Ravens - Ken McKusick

PASS RUSH

Martindale employed an aggressive pass rush by numbers vs Burrow, who had been one of the fastest QBs in terms of time to throw. However, in terms of deceptive elements Wink was quite conservative. Unsurprisingly for a game where the opponent threw for 10.8 YPP, there was not a substantial positive split.

For the game, Burrow had ATS on 13 of 38 drop backs (34%) resulting in a pass or sack. He also had 7 ball out quick (BOQ) instances and the Ravens generated 17 pressure events within 3 seconds.

Justin Houston was by far the Ravens most effective pass rusher with contributions to 2 pressures plus 4 other QHs. Odafe Oweh also had contributions to 4 pressures.

MLB Josh Bynes (46 snaps) played well with 6 tackles, 5 of which were defensive wins (R0, P6, R0, R0, R-5). He diagnosed the QB sneak by Burrow and 2nd and 1, leapt over the line, and the Ravens were able to stop the play for no gain. He also delivered a pressure (Q1, 12:29).

For the second consecutive week, the Ravens activated all 5 ILBs on their roster. Patrick Queen got the majority of the WLB snaps (27) and made 2 tackles, including a TFL. Malik Harrison (11 total snaps) saw time at WLB and lined up at OLB on 4 jumbo nickel snaps. Chris Board (20 total snaps) played some as the WLB and some as the only ILB in obvious passing situations.

What the Bengals Said After Beating Ravens - Ryan Mink

WR Ja’Marr Chase

(on whether the gameplan for him was different today)”The gameplan today still had deep balls, but, of course, it was whatever I could get my hands on. [The defense] was playing over the top on us today. You know, trying to go deep. [Marlon] Humphrey did a great job of not letting me go over the top of him. We just started going to back-shoulders, stop routes, slants, quick pitches and stuff like that. After the catches come the [yards after the catch], breaking the tackle, making guys miss, and heading to the end zone.”

(on his touchdown play)”I had a slant on that play. I knew my release, what I wanted to do before I ran the route. I’ve been watching Humphrey’s film day and night to get the best idea I can have of him. I know he’s such a great corner. I came off the line with some hesitation then gave it a big burst and cut in on the slant route. I protected myself from any hit. As I was getting hit, my momentum took me into a spin. I kept following the spin and went from there.”

Ravens Looking for Answers After Defense Struggles Again - Todd Karpovich

“We’re not very consistent yet,” defensive end Calais Campbell said. “We’re trying to find ourselves still. We have flashes. We had flashes of it today, and then we had moments where we didn’t play so [well]. One thing for sure is that I believe in everybody we have in the room.

“I believe in my guys. The mistakes we made I know we’re going to fix, and we’re going to go out there and play some good football. In the second half of the season, we’re going to be a force to be reckoned with, that’s for sure.”

“It’s just all part of having pride. In these situations, especially when you’re down, it’s all about pride and just ‘man’-ing up,” linebacker Tyus Bowser said. “We’re not going to just let them score. We have to have pride in ourselves and our defense. Honestly, man, we’ve just got to understand that in situations like this, when we’re feeling down, we can’t give up. Don’t quit. Have pride in yourself and your teammates, and go out there and make sure we stop them.”