The majority of national pundits still view the Baltimore Ravens as one of the top teams in the league despite a horrendously sloppy road loss to their division rival Pittsburgh Steelers. Now, it’s time to see where the team lands among the NFL landscape of power rankings heading into Week 6.
The Athletic: 11 (Last week: 8)
Wide receiver Zay Flowers, the No. 22 pick, is third among all rookies with 317 receiving yards, and he’s carrying a huge chunk of the Ravens’ passing game. He’s 11th in the league in team target percentage (28.6 percent), according to TruMedia. In the “new guy” category, wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. has a lot fewer catches (seven) than he had offseason headlines during his free agency.
Sport Illustrated: 8 (Last week: 8)
The Ravens had this one in the bag. There were so many once-in-a-blue-moon hiccups, especially with the way Lamar Jackson was reading his receivers’ intentions, or simply receiver drops. I wouldn’t read too much into it. Baltimore is still generating turnover-worthy, free-runner blitzes every game. Jackson looks more comfortable and full of options than he ever has. Had he looked off Damontae Kazee and gone over the top to Mark Andrews at the end of the fourth quarter instead of lofting a pick in the corner of the end zone, we’d be talking about how Baltimore looks like they’re gaining separation in the AFC North.
ESPN: 11 (Last week: 7)
Fantasy surprise: WR Odell Beckham Jr.
Beckham missed two games with an ankle injury and hasn’t been productive when he’s been on the field. He is averaging a career-low 4.9 fantasy points per game this season. Beckham was a fantasy must-have from 2014 to 2020, when he averaged double digits per game in each of those seasons. His previous career low was 9.2 points per game, which was in 2021. Lamar Jackson’s favorite target at wide receiver has been rookie Zay Flowers, and it doesn’t look like that will change.
Bleacher Report: 9 (Last week: 7)
This is a game that could haunt the Baltimore Ravens down the road.
For most of Sunday’s matchup with the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Ravens appeared to be in complete control. The Steelers could get nothing going offensively. But the Baltimore offense couldn’t put Pittsburgh away, and a series of late mistakes opened the door for the Steelers to steal the game and a share of first place in the AFC North.
Yahoo Sports: 9 (Last week: 8)
Odell Beckham Jr. has seven catches for 79 yards in the three games he has played this season. The Ravens paid Beckham $15 million for this season and it looks like they got left holding an empty bag. And they could use him, too; the Ravens’ pass-catchers had way too many drops and mistakes in a winnable game against the Steelers.
Sportsnaut: 9 (Last week: 8)
Lamar Jackson’s two fourth-quarter turnovers were the final nail in the Baltimore Ravens’ coffin on Sunday. What drove this offense into the ground, though was seven drops by Ravens’ receivers and a mental lapse downfield by Zay Flowers. The Ravens are entirely responsible for their two losses this season and those self-inflicted wounds are why they are 3-2 instead of 5-0.
USA Today: 10 (Last week: 8)
It’s been an uneven start, to say the least, but it’s also unusual to play four of five away from home so early in the season – and Baltimore’s three-game roadie winds to a conclusion Sunday in London.
Sporting News: 10 (Last week: 8)
The Ravens are getting sloppy with Lamar Jackson in the new supposed better passing offense, maybe going out of their element and not playing enough of a complement to the defense. It needs to be fixed, stat.
NFL.com: 10 (Last week: 8)
Sunday’s loss hurt more than the Week 3 stunner against the Colts did, in my opinion. Sure, falling to a backup QB isn’t ideal, but Gardner Minshew is decent, as are the Colts; plus, that game was straight-up fluky in a lot of ways. Week 5? The Ravens just gave Pittsburgh the win. They had chances to step on the Steelers’ necks multiple times throughout, but dropped passes, turnovers (two by Lamar Jackson late) and special-teams breakdowns started the avalanche, with Pickett-to-Pickens finishing it. The Ravens are a good team. My suspicion is they’ll snap out of whatever funk they’re in and realize it. Maybe the trip to London will be cleansing. Or at least more cleansing than their last trip overseas.
CBS Sports: 11 (Last week: 6)
What happened to the offense against the Steelers? Lamar Jackson and the passing game kept missing big chances with drops and poor throws.
Sharp Football Analysis: 12 (Last week: 7)
There is something wrong with this offense. For the second time in three weeks, they seemingly sleepwalked through a game only to lose it late. The Ravens are currently 22nd in the rate of 20+ yard gains in the passing game. They are sixth in turnovers and ninth in penalty yards. Those issues need to be fixed for this team to reach their full potential in a winnable division.
Walterfootball.com: 6 (Last week: 6)
“The Ravens were so sloppy in their opening-week win, and that echoed what happened against the Colts. Maybe that’s just an odd-week thing because the Ravens have been great on even weeks.”
I wrote this last week, and it actually came to fruition. I actually didn’t believe this odd-week nonsense, but the Ravens have now played poorly in Weeks 1, 3, and 5, and they’ve been great in Weeks 2 and 4. Let’s see if they crush it in Week 6.
Pro Football Network: 9 (Last week: 7)
Divisional games in the AFC North are always a bit funky. Talent and records don’t seem to matter when hate fills the heart. And the AFC North takes us back to the days when rivalries were real.
The Ravens simply didn’t show up offensively. Wide receivers decided they’d rather not catch the football on this day. An ill-advised Lamar Jackson red-zone fade to Odell Beckham Jr. resulted in a late interception, and Alex Highsmith sealed the game with a strip sack on the next drive.