K Billy Cundiff likes to kick. Kick is what Billy does well. Billy kicked plenty and scored 12 points for the Ravens victory over the Miami Dolphins, 26-10, improving to a record of 6-2. Now about all of those red zone appearances with no touchdowns.
With a total of 7 opportunities in the red zone, the Ravens only capitalized once. One in seven is not a good look for a team with that many offensive threats. Donte Stallworth made his debut for the season but did not catch a dime all day. Rolling up in the end zone and not cashing in for 7 points but coming out with 3 is the equivalent of a “package” coming up short (Peep Ziggy in The Wire, Season 2). It’s only a matter of time before you get shook down by Cheese or some other team on the horizon. Despite their inability to score in the red zone, Joe Flacco and his offense did accumulate 407 total yards for the day. Flacco protected the rock throwing for 286 yards and 2 TDs. But maybe the highlight of the offensive effort was when RB Willis McGahee broke lose on a screen pass from Flacco and skipped his way for a 32 yard TD. Folks, this was the Ravens first opening possession TD score of the season. Damned, the slow start!
The Ravens defense went to work on ‘Phins. The D showed a case of healed injuries and a sense of renewal from their bye week. After allowing the ‘Phins 10 points in the first half, the defense shut ‘em down and out. The ‘Phins couldn’t move, run or throw the rock for any substantial yardage. QB Chad Henne ate grass twice getting pinned by Haloti Ngata and Terrell Suggs. Even Ed Reed’s hip is looking nice as he recorded his third interception in 2 games. Overall, the defense looked fresh and pounced on the ‘Phins to give their offense opportunities. Despite an opening score TD run by RB Ronnie Brown, the defense held the ‘Phins to a lowly 73 yards rushing.
The Ravens won’t have much time to fix their apparent woes in the red zone as they travel south to the ATL Falcons for a Thursday night contest. While Cundiff is dependable, kicking 10 of 12 for the season, the fire power that is Ray Rice and the receiving crew should be an automatic 7 points. Stop getting Ziggy with the ball…
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Written by Lea Anderson