Baltimore Ravens get a pivotal win against Detroit Lions 44-20
The Baltimore Ravens offense shows up against the Detroit Lions defense as Joe Flacco was relatively accurate all game and almost throws for 300 yards in the air.
Where was this Flacco all year? He connected on the deep shot to Mike Wallace early in the game. They have been attempting for the last couple games and looked in sync most of the time with his receivers. Flacco was 23 for 36 on passing attempts and threw for 269 yards ( with 2 passing touchdowns). He made good throws necessary to keep the chains moving and used many different receivers. If this Flacco shows up next week against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Heinz Field, the Baltimore Ravens have a shot in that game if the offensive line protects him well enough a good Steelers pass rush and if the offense does not turn the ball over.
The Ravens run game has been a strength recently and is the key to future success on offense.
Alex Collins had another game where he rushed for a touchdown as he rushed for two touchdowns in this game. Collins had fewer carries, only 15 in this game, but rushed for 75 yards. Javorius Allen had 7 carries for 22 yards and Danny Woodhead had 3 carries for 9 yards. At this point, it is obvious to see that with Collins as the lead back and Allen/ Woodhead as the complementary passing backs, Terrance West (who was a healthy scratch again today), does not seem to have a future role in the offense. Collins did have to leave the game shortly with an injury but came back in the game with ease. He is much-needed in this offense as the feature back and could be a key factor next week against the very good Steelers run defense.
The Ravens passing game and the receivers looked more sync today other than the few dropped passes overall.
Mike Wallace had another big game as he had 5 catches for 116 yards and got the deep throw from Flacco to set up a touchdown early in this game. Ever since Week 11, Wallace has had 4 catches or more and should be the go-to deep threat against one of his former teams next week. Jeremy Maclin had 4 catches for 41 yards but could have more as he dropped a few passes today. Chris Moore and Ben Watson were also involved and both had 3 catches for about 20-30 yards with Watson catching a touchdown on the big Wallace catch.
I think Chris Moore should play over Breshad Perriman for the rest of the season. Perriman was a healthy scratch today for the 2nd time.
Perriman was a healthy scratch once again as he did not get a catch last week against the Houston Texans. Michael Campanaro did play but mostly as the returner. Collins and Woodhead also had 2 catches and Allen had 1 catch in this game. Nick Boyle, Maxx Williams, and Patrick Ricard all had a catch. In fact, Ricard caught a pass in the end zone on a play action. He’s been used a fullback but still can catch passes as a defensive lineman originally. The passing game will have to step up and do their part to help out against the Steelers secondary that could be exploited.
Terrell Suggs and the Ravens pass rush stepped up when needed late in the game to help the secondary.
The Ravens pass rush was not affecting Matt Stafford early. When Stafford needed to score the most in the 4th quarter to shorten the Ravens lead, the pass rush stepped up. Terrell Suggs and Matt Judon, as well as Eric Weddle with Willie Henry, also got pressure on Matt Stafford. Suggs, at age 35, is still getting to quarterbacks and is the Ravens leading sack man with 10.5 sacks. His pressure will be key against a good Steelers offensive line. Rookies Tim Williams and Tyus Bowser have to step up and get pressure on the quarterback more consistently, even though they have limited snaps. The Ravens will need all the pressure they can get on Ben Roethlisberger in Week 14.
The run defense did hold up on an inconsistent running game but did enough this week.
Theo Riddick and Zach Zenner had a combined 25 yards but the Ravens run defense let up a touchdown and 51 yards to Tion Green in his first game in the NFL. Brandon Williams, Carl Davis, and Michael Pierce did enough for the win today. However, they will all have to step up against Le’Veon Bell next week. Patrick Onwuasour made some nice special teams tackles but C.J. Mosely struggled with Eric Ebron in coverage. Mosely was also out early in the game with a stinger and was in concussion protocol but passed and played to finish the game. He will also play a big factor in stopping the Steelers running game next week.
The 7th win for the Ravens did not come without a loss. CB, Jimmy Smith is done for the year with a torn Achilles.
No surprise but Ravens CB Jimmy Smith out for the season with torn Achilles, per source.
— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) December 3, 2017
According to Adam Schefter, Jimmy Smith is done for the year in a non-contact injury and tore his Achilles early in this game. Smith has dealt with a nagging Achilles injury for the past month and a half but still played through it. Smith was one of the top cornerbacks this year regardless of injury and had 3 interceptions and 9 pass deflections. He did struggle in Week 12 against the Houston Texans, DeAndre Hopkins. Nonetheless, he still was planning to shut down Marvin Jones Jr. and did till he got injured.
The Ravens drafted Marlon Humphery, cornerback out Alabama, in the 1st round to eventually replace Jimmy Smith but now will have to do so this year as a rookie.
But now, Humphery will have to start and will most likely take on the top receivers. Especially if Brandon Carr continues to struggle with upper echelon receivers. The defense was definitely not the same with Jimmy Smith out. Stafford targeted Humphery and he did get abused on the deep ball by Marvin Jones Jr. a few times. That let the Lions come back in this game. He did rebound and pick off Stafford late in the game to get his 2nd interception. However, this performance will not cut it against Antonio Brown or Martavis Bryant. The Ravens could also play Jaylen Hill, who has been inactive, next week next to Maurice Canady in the nickel cornerback spot. Eric Weddle will be a big factor next week. He also had a pick-six and forced a fumble in this game. He has 5 interceptions this season.