Ravens bye week checklist: What needs to be fixed?

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Nov 1, 2015; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith, Sr. (89) catches a pass over San Diego Chargers cornerback Jason Verrett (22) in the first quarter at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Take more deep shots down the field

This one obviously isn’t going to be easy after the Ravens lost wide receiver Steve Smith for the season this past Sunday.  But they have a couple of speedy receivers on the current roster, including deep threat Chris Givens and returner Jeremy Ross, so there’s no reason they can’t draw up some more deep passing plays.

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The Ravens are averaging a mere 5.3 yards per play on offense, good for 22nd best in the NFL.  And that’s when you include Smith’s excellent 14.6 yards per play.  Givens has averaged 16.4 yards per play over the course of his career, and is the obvious answer to this problem.

The only problem is, offensive coordinator Marc Trestman is going to have to dial up the deep ball more if this is going to work.  You have one of the NFL’s most accurate deep passers in Joe Flacco, so there’s really no reason not to, even with a mediocre supporting cast.

Next: Finish the drive

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