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Week 12 Preview: Ravens vs. Jets

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Last week, we saw some good and we saw some bad. The Ravens went on the road in week 11 to Chicago, where they were beaten 23-20 after a long hard fought game.

After a delay that lasted an hour and 53 minutes, the Ravens took the field and were ultimately beaten even after Ray Rice ran for over a hundred yards.

The real killer last week wasn’t the offensive lines run blocking or Rice’s lack of burst, but the lack of passing game as Flacco went 17-31 on just a meager 162 yards. The Ravens defense did their part last week as they held Matt Forte to just 83 yards and no touchdowns. In the end, it came down to a late fourth quarter drive in which the Ravens failed to punch the ball into the endzone from the two yard line after driving all the way down the field from their own 16.

The offense settled for a field goal making the score 20-20, which forced overtime in which they were eventually beaten. Flacco had another interception-plagued day, which allowed Chicago to score ten points in just 12 seconds on back to back plays (Chicago field goal, followed by Chicago pick 6).

It was another bumpy week for Baltimore as they slipped to 4-6. Despite the terrible record the Ravens are still very much in the hunt for the playoffs and are currently in a tie with six other AFC teams that are all just one game behind Miami (5-5) and the Jets (5-5) for the last AFC playoff spot. Let’s just say things are tight in the AFC.

This week, the Ravens may be in for one of their most pivotal games of the season. If the team can notch a win against New York this Sunday, then they’ll be in a perfect position to sneak into the AFC 6th seed, with a three-game home stand on the horizon.

It won’t be easy for Baltimore.

The Ravens have arguably one of the worst rushing games in the NFL, and the Jets are ranked at #1 in rushing defense this year. The stingy Jets D is only allowing about 73.2 YPG. That means the pressure will be on the offensive line this week to open up holes for Ray Rice more than any other week, and it could be a train wreck. The Ravens will most likely have to depend on a heavy passing attack which will be aided by the return of Marlon Brown this week.

After a big loss to Buffalo, the Jets will also be playing to keep their playoff hopes alive as well. Though the Ravens are obviously in the more desperate situation, the Jets will still be playing like a team that has to compete.

The Ravens defense is going to play a huge role this week. The Geno-coaster has been up and down all season and if Smith is on his game this Sunday the Ravens will have to be conscious of the duel threat he poses as both a running and a throwing quarterback. Geno Smith is responsible for 20 of the Jets 21 turnovers this season and over the past five games he has one touchdown to nine interceptions; if this is the Geno Smith the Ravens get on Sunday expect the Ravens defense to have a field day.

These are two bad offenses and two great defenses meeting this Sunday, expect the game to be a low scoring slug fest that should ultimately come down to who makes the least mistakes, and turnovers. It’ll no doubt be an ugly one down in the bank but the Ravens have to start churning out close games if they want to be a real contender.

Baltimore is 2-4 this year in games decided by three points or less, this time last year they were 4-1 in those games. Close games are the key to the Ravens winning the 6th seed. The Ravens inability to win close games late is a sign that the team needs more time to fully come together and play as a team. Lately it seems they’ve been sputtering out and letting teams hang around (example: 10 point lead in Chicago in first quarter turns into 23-20 OT loss).

Ed Reed will make his second return to M&T Bank Stadium this Sunday in a different uniform after being cut by the Texans last week. Jets head coach and ex-Ravens defensive coordinator Rex Ryan was quick to snatch his former safety up and is planning on using Reed in Baltimore this weekend. The extent of Reed’s effect on the game will be another story, as the last time Reed came to Baltimore he was basically non-existent for Houston’s defense. It will be interesting to see the Ravens fans give Reed a second farewell.

The six points to the game this week:

1)    Flacco needs to stay Pick free

2)    Confuse rookie QB Geno Smith

3)    Shake up the playbook (trickery should loosen up the Jets D)

4)    Finish drives in the Redzone (stalling on the goal line is becoming a bad habit)

5)    Shut down HB Chris Ivory

6)    Find a way to finish games

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The student news site of Aberdeen High School
Week 12 Preview: Ravens vs. Jets