One thing we learned about each NFL team in Week 15: Tua, Dolphins erase narrative; Chiefs’ run game clicking - Jeff Kerr
Greg Roman is likely in his final games as offensive coordinator: The Ravens offense was anemic Saturday, putting up just three points and 324 yards of offense in the loss to the Browns. There’s no passing game in Baltimore with Lamar Jackson out, as Tyler Huntley went 17 of 30 for 138 yards with no touchdowns and an interception, throwing to the likes of Demarcus Robinson, Devin Duvernay, and DeSean Jackson.
Even Mark Andrews is ineffective in the passing game, thanks to the lack of weapons at wide receiver. The Ravens can run the ball, but the only real explosive play was a J.K. Dobbins 37-yard run in which he was surprisingly caught from behind (Dobbins is still getting his speed back from his knee injury).
This offense needs Jackson back to save face, but Roman probably shouldn’t be back in 2023 regardless.
Overall Rookie Grade: 80.5 (Rank: 2/24)
Principal Opponent: TE David Njoku
Week 15 Snaps: 38
Hamilton played 38 snaps this week for the Ravens against Cleveland on Saturday. He made three defensive stops to tie for the team lead and finished the game as Baltimore’s best-graded defender. Hamilton has shown excellent versatility in his rookie year and has been used particularly well as a tight end coverage player as the season has gone on.
Overall Rookie Grade: 75.1 (Rank: 1/3)
Principal Opponent: DI Jordan Elliott
Week 15 Snaps: 63
Linderbaum had a favorable matchup this week when he met the Cleveland interior, and he responded with one of his better games of the season. He allowed just one pressure in pass protection from 37 pass-blocking snaps and earned the second-best PFF run-blocking grade of any Ravens offensive lineman. Linderbaum has been very good in that area in his rookie year, but his pass protection has been troublesome at times.
8. Baltimore Ravens (9-5 | last week: 7)
The past few weeks are clear evidence of just how much the Ravens need Lamar Jackson back. In the three games that Tyler Huntley has played in place of the injured Jackson, Baltimore ranks 27th in EPA per drive and is tied for last in offensive points per game. They’re one of the worst offenses in football without Jackson; with him, they have to be considered a deep postseason contender. The drop-off couldn’t be more significant.
10. Baltimore Ravens (9-5)
(Last week: 7)
Lamar Jackson is reportedly likely to return this week after a two-game absence from a knee injury. That’s good, because Baltimore managed just three points against the 26th-ranked Browns defense (by DVOA) with Tyler Huntley at the helm. If you’re a Ravens optimist, there’s reason to believe the offense can do its job with Jackson, Mark Andrews and J.K. Dobbins playing together for the first time since Week 6, alongside a defense that has been the third-best in the league by DVOA since Week 9. If you’re a Ravens pessimist, well, their injury luck over the past two years has proven you right already.
The Falcons (5-9), who are seven-point underdogs heading into Baltimore, lost Sunday to the host New Orleans Saints, 21-18, in what was rookie Desmond Ridder’s first NFL start. The third-round pick, who replaced the injured and slumping Marcus Mariota, went 13-for-26 for 97 yards and was sacked four times while rushing six times for 38 yards on Sunday.
The Ravens have struggled as betting favorites at M&T Bank Stadium this season. They’re 4-2 overall but 0-5-1 against the spread at home. Atlanta, meanwhile, is 4-3 against the spread on the road.
The Ravens are 4-2 all time in the series, with wins in three of their past four meetings.
Week 16: Ravens — Falcons Preview, Where to Watch, Prediction - Todd Karpovich
Meanwhile, the Ravens running attack has excelled and is ranked second in the league, averaging 164.7 yards per game. J.K. Dobbins is back in the lineup from a knee procedure and has run for more than 100 yards in the past two games. Gus Edwards is a solid downhill runner that can gain short yardage. The Ravens will need to pound the ball against Atlanta, which is allowing 129.9 yards per game on the ground.
Falcons running back Tyler Allgeier is having a solid season and ranks second among rookies with a team-high 743 rushing yards. He rushed for a career-high 139 yards last week, the most by a Falcons rookie running back since William Andrews in 1979. Veteran Cordarrelle Patterson has team-leading seven total touchdowns in 10 games this season. He rushed for a career-high 141 yards and a touchdown against Seattle in Week 3. The Ravens, however, have been stout against the run and are third in the NFL allowing 85.6 yards per game. Baltimore will have the advantage in this game.
There are various scenarios where the Ravens can clinch a playoff berth with a victory. There is also a sense of urgency after last week’s dismal showing in Cleveland. If Jackson can play, the Ravens should be able to run away from the Falcons. If he is sidelined again, they might have to eke out a victory.
Ravens 17, Falcons 9