0 0 0 It’s the weekend of wild rematches and Bubbles (Ravens) revisits where the stitches of their season began to unravel. Foxboro is the vacants and Tom Brady and Bill Belichick are Snoop and Chris Partlow who laid the Ravens to rest in week 4. Can the Ravens become the cast of the Night of the Living Dead and end the Patriots season?
In their fist match-up, the Patriots were able to control the clock and were helped by the Ravens starting their trend of beating themselves by racking up penalties. The epidemic that is the secondary was just a mosquito bite that later turned into dengue fever. Joe Flacco held his own, but his receivers let him down by dropping dimes and snitching. The little things in that game exacerbated into a 3 game losing streak and a season of missed opportunities.
While the past can be a gauge of what can possibly come in the future, it is also a recording of mistakes that can be corrected. The Ravens must discontinue their Ambien® use in the first half and pop off early. The offense has slowly returned to its running attack because Flacco has become a shadow of himself with his receivers becoming a disappointment in big moments. Opponents have figured out that pressure coming from the perimeter results in Flacco getting laid out, either because he is missing his reads and/or his protectors are missing blocks. Flacco eating grass will not get the Ravens out of the vacants because he loses confidence when picking grass out of his teeth.
The Patriots do not beat themselves and the Ravens have to do the same. Being 3rd in the League in RICO charges has kept opponents’ drives alive, kept the defense on the field and negated touchdowns. It’s no secret the secondary is the bone that breaks the defenses’ back, but with Wes Walker out with shredded knee ligaments, the Ravens may not be as punished for all the attention they will pay to Randy Moss. However, Walker’s clone, rookie Julian Edleman is not to be slept on. Look for Ray Lewis to give the rookie a shakedown over the middle.
The Ravens will welcome back Tubbie on the Line, Jared Gaither, who was out with a foot. Gaither will have to be on the good foot to protect Flacco from pressure and schemes that Bellichick will throw at the line. SS Ed Reed, out with a neck and groin, returned to action last week, but hopes to have more of an impact by disrupting Brady’s game. RB Willis McGahee, not on the injured list, but missing in action on the field except in goal line situations, returned to his running dominance with 167 yards last week. Welcome back, Willis!
It’s gon’ be a chilly day in Foxboro and the formidable Patriots are looking to nail the door shut on the vacants. Can the Ravens shake their Bubbles-like behavior and finally post a win against the Patriots (0-3 lifetime)? Or will the bad addictions to penalties and mistakes have them packing their lockers for the winter? Stay tuned…
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Written by Lea Anderson