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ExtremeRavens: The Sanctuary

PReston is stating what I think


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The Ravens pride themselves on being physical, but they were smacked around in the postseason. Houston rushed for 131 yards in the divisional playoffs and the Ravens rushed for only 87 yards overall, and Ray Rice was held to 60 yards on 21 carries.

The Texans had five sacks and six quarterback hurries. The Ravens had three quarterback hurries and no sacks.

In the AFC championship game, the Ravens allowed the New England Patriots — one of the worst rushing teams in the NFL — to gain 96 yards including 68 on 15 carries toBenJarvus Green-Ellis, who sounds more like a law firm than an NFL running back.

On the offensive side, Rice got handcuffed again for 67 yards on 21 carries. The Patriots had three sacks and seven quarterback hurries, and if New England's defensive line was as lean and as fast as the Texans', they would still be scraping quarterback Joe Flacco off the turf at Gillette Stadium.

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Oh, Preston. He'll argue anything to start a fuss.


Two weeks ago, Preston told you straight out (as most knew) that the Patriots ran all over the Ravens because the Ravens were over-committed to stopping the passing attack. He also noted, as everyone else did, that the strategy worked like a charm. It would have been nice to give up less on the ground, but we were in the best possible position to win that game because our strategy was working - control Brady, make them beat us on the ground.


I also love when he steals a line like "sounds like a lawfirm" to be his central joke. That line has been going around the league all season - especially in New England, where the fans have embraced it as Green's nickname.


We've also already been over that the Ravens didn't hit Yates in the Houston game because we simply didn't care to. We settled back for 3 picks (should have been more) because we recognized that overcommitting the pass rush wasn't necessary. Once again, no one seems to care that the designed play actually worked.



Our play was far from perfect in both games for many reasons. I was not pleased to see guys like Ellerbe missing tackles all over the place in both games. And I think we certainly could have been more physical. But Preston is a tool and few of his points are valid.


We could keep going... the Ravens got 60 rushing yards against the Texans... the #2 defense in the league. And they got over 100 on us... but they were of course a top rushing team with 2 1000 yard rushers. No mention on those. The Pats aimed to make Rice beat them. He didn't. But we were more than capable of having everyone else beat them offensively. Again, you'd think we'd just lost 30-0. Rather, our offense largely adapted well in the Pats game.

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The game is won in the trenches and the Ravens faded there in the playoffs. The O line was a disappointment, in fact they looked bad at times and that sabotaged the offense.... but remember...Houstons D is very good. The Houston D got burned early but give them credit for staying focused.


Redding looked slow, Cody must have hit some kind of wall. Ngatas injury hurt his impact...so Suggs was double teamed. Kruger is good but not an impact player yet. JJ looked slow. Birk got eaten alive by Wilfork....


Nevertheless, despite weak line play, the Ravens came within a catch of being in the Super Bowl. Not mentioned is the 3 INT's against Houston and Yates 28.8 QB rating. For all that running, Foster only got 1 TD and the D held them to 13 points. That's a good day.

Not mentioned is Bradys 2 INT's and 57 QB rating. The D got the job done for the most part. They sacrificed the run to stop Brady and his arm. To play run first was to invite disaster.


I have to agree that the O line once again has to be improved or 2012 won't be fun. Changes have to be made on the D front 7 also.

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