Figured Out

It took almost five years, but the Ravens have been completely figured out. Either that or there are bigger problems that haven’t came to the surface yet. After two weeks of football, a season in which the Ravens were expected to be serious contenders, they are now 0-2. Early excuses are sometimes a factor, but that isn’t the case here. Baltimore is in serious trouble of having a dangerous setback year, that they may not come back out of for a few years.

Perhaps Jamal Lewis needs more time to get his feet and game conditioning back to Pro Bowl status, or maybe that wouldn’t change his route at all. Two years ago he had his infamous 2,000 yard season, and from there it has been a downhill slide. Lewis looks battered from injuries, personal issues, and being without a fresh contract. Gearing to shut him down has never been this easy, but it isn’t even ten percent of his fault.

After bringing in Derrick Mason and having a returned healthy Todd Heap, the Ravens were hoping to bring Kyle Boller’s right arm out of a cast. That arm must need special treatment as it hasn’t cooperated with its settings. His injury against the Colts may help him sit down and think about where he is at in his career. If he returns to the lineup and plays as the same low robotic quarterback than this team is history. As scary as this may sound, Baltimore’s season rides on Kyle Boller.

A team in the NFL that wants to be successful has to have a formidable passing attack. Running the ball well comes hand in hand if you can do the above. It’s a miracle that the Ravens were able to do what they did with Lewis a few years ago, but that isn’t going to happen anymore. The offensive line has aged and isn’t as stellar anymore, and defenses realize they can afford to leave the passing game open. Every time they do, Boller or Wright hasn’t been able to make the correct decisions. More than often it’s either a rushed throw, quick out, or to the other team.

Contracted behavior is a natural inhibited human trait. The fact that the offense fails to produce on every drive, is demoting to the mental state of the defense. Just because the defense and offense isn’t on the field together doesn’t mean they are two complete separate units. There is too much emphasis on individual positions and specific coordinators for each position. When a team is seeing part of it being useless and torn to an oblivion, it rubs off in a negative way.

That may not rub off on the defense every week, but there are going to be times like Sunday where it does. The offense failed to run the ball for more than twenty yards, while the passing game didn’t take a step across the bridge take off.

Motivation is what drives a defense. Imagine setting foot on the field with all the might in your drive to stop a team. Shutting down opponents is routine, but this time you give up an early touchdown. That 110 percent effort quickly withers down to 100, and so forth every time you start to realize that no matter what you do it doesn’t matter. Your offense doesn’t has a shot like Shaq making a free throw to put up any points on the scoreboard.

To act like this wouldn’t eventually come for the Baltimore defense is insane. They’ve been great for such a long time, and are still a force. It’s just that plays can be made on them, and in years prior that could only be a singular term with the word play. To expect their defense to hold the great AFC teams to under ten points anymore is reliance on prior history. Get past that and don’t let the fact that the team is giving up points stretch your mind from the real plague. A week ago Tennessee gave up ballooning amounts of yards on the ground and even through the air for the amount of throws Roethlisberger threw. Literally the Titans defense looks average again thanks to the Ravens.

The door will shut completely for the Ravens if Boller doesn’t come back a nerve ready quarterback. Before long their will be defensive captains that speak out on this matter from the Ravens. It wouldn’t be shocking to see someone like Ray Lewis voice his mind with a demand. Either bring in a capable starting quarterback or get rid of me.


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