Marcus Peters Confronts His Football Mortality - Logan Murdock
“We was at practice. Binji [Victor] ran a deep seven, and we were doing a scramble drill with Snoop,” Peters recalls, referencing backup quarterback Tyler Huntley by his nickname. “Snoop had scrambled out, and Binji just tried to come back, and I just tried to plant, and I just stepped wrong, bro, and just went south from here.”
He felt a twitch in his knee, and team doctors would soon confirm the extent of the damage: a torn anterior cruciate ligament necessitating surgery and a year of rehab.
Peters was about to endure the longest stretch of his life without the game.
Peters’s absence coincided with the worst Ravens season in five years. Their defense dropped to the lower end of the league standings, and the team missed the playoffs for the first time since 2017.
“I was mad as [**ck],” Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson tells me. “I was like, ‘We need him’ because he’s that guy. But I feel like he was just willing to get better. He knew what it was and what his situation was. And he was telling us to just stay locked in.”
Along the way, he became the team’s elder statesman. When young defensive backs need reassurance, he’s there to provide a lesson. “He’s the guy in the DB room and even in the defensive room when things start going awry, he gets everybody back on the same page,” rookie safety Kyle Hamilton tells me. “When we’re maybe a little unfocused, he focuses back up and he’s a great vet in that way and gets everybody on the same page.”
What’s the deal with Marcus Peters? He seems to get turnovers but there are so many plays that he seems to “take off.”
— Neil in Parkville
I understand Peters is coming off major knee surgery and he is probably a step slower now in his eighth year in the NFL, but he is playing soft on the corner. The Jaguars threw several hitch passes and he wasn’t involved in the gang tackling, and I once saw him going back to huddle instead of trying to take down the receiver. I suspect part of the problem is that he doesn’t want to risk getting hurt again, but he also seems to give up easily when things aren’t going his way. He has had the same problem for other teams he’s played on.
All NFL teams know they have to play well down the stretch-run of the schedule if they want to keep playing in January in pro football’s championship tournament.
So, it comes as no shock the team with the best December record since 2017, the Kansas City Chiefs, went to the NFL playoffs all five seasons, including to two Super Bowls, winning one Lombardi Trophy, and making it to the AFC conference title game two more times.
The Chiefs, in December, over the last five seasons were a dominating 20-3, heavy favorites across Maryland sportsbooks.
During the same years, the Baltimore Ravens also put together a solid December record of 18-6.
That happens to be the second-most wins behind only the Chiefs, and it’s tied for third in winning percentage (75%) with Dallas, 15-5.
NFL offensive line rankings ahead of Week 13 - Sam Monson
3. BALTIMORE RAVENS (DOWN 1)
Projected Week 13 Starters:
LG Ben Powers
RT Morgan Moses
Patrick Mekari allowed just one pressure and was flagged for one penalty against Jacksonville as he stood in for Ronnie Stanley at left tackle.
Baltimore’s line has allowed 67 pressures this season, but 12 of them (18%) have been sacks.
Upcoming Opponent: Denver Broncos
Injuries have slowed Denver’s pass rush, but they still rank top 10 in pressure rate on the season. Baron Browning has now had three consecutive below-average PFF pass-rushing grades on the edge.
Week 13: Ravens Vs. Broncos Preview, Where to Watch, Prediction - Todd Karpovich
Baltimore will be facing a formidable Broncos defense that is allowing just 17.6 points per game, ranked third in the NFL.
Denver has a solid pass rush with Bradley Chubb and Dre’Mont Jones who each have 5.5 sacks. Caden Sterns leads the team with two interceptions.
Denver is allowing 121.9 yards rushing per game, so the Ravens should be able to move the ball on the ground. Alex Singleton leads the Broncos with 84 tackles.
The Broncos running attack has also struggled. With the recent release of Melvin Gordon, former Raven Latavius Murray leads the team with 301 yards. Denver will struggle to move the ball against the Ravens’ front seven and this will be a major advantage for Baltimore.
The Ravens’ offense needs to get back on track and it’s going to be tough against the Broncos. The good news is that Denver will struggle to score so the Ravens will have to avoid turnovers and extend drives. That mission should be accomplished.
Ravens 17, Broncos 9
Week 13 NFL picks: Chiefs get revenge on Bengals in one-point thriller; 49ers cool off Tua’s Dolphins - Pete Prisco
Denver Broncos at Baltimore Ravens (-8)
The Broncos are lifeless on offense, which is never a good thing playing consecutive road games and especially against a team coming off a horrible loss. The Ravens haven’t exactly been lighting things up on offense, but they will do enough here to win it and make the Broncos’ season-long misery continue.
Pick: Ravens 26, Broncos 10