Baltimore Ravens Must Start Making Things Easier For Themselves
The Baltimore Ravens have a habit of just scraping by when they win. The Ravens also rarely get blown out, they lose in the most heartbreaking fashion.
Since 2014 33 Baltimore Ravens games have been decided by one possession. It does not matter who the Ravens are playing, if you’re a betting man, bet on a tight score. There seem to be a few reasons for the Ravens habit of giving us near heart failure.
First, the Ravens have not been a great team over the past couple seasons. The Ravens went 5-11 in 2015 with more injuries than you could quickly count. As promising as 2016 was, the Ravens were 8-8 and missed the playoffs. The Ravens lost games they shouldn’t have. Losing to the Jets, for example, was clearly because the team played down to the level of their competition. This is something that has been a real problem for most of the Harbaugh era.
The Ravens also lack superstars. The Atlanta Falcons made the Super Bowl because of their fire power. Julio Jones is a superstar in the highest order, and they surrounded him and Matt Ryan with complimentary pieces. Atlanta dominated the Packers in the NFC Championship. They made big play after big play. That’s what happens when you have some star power. The Ravens need a player or two who invokes fear from their opponent.
Finally, the Ravens play a ton of close games because they don’t keep their foot on the gas pedal. The Ravens will get the lead an Dean Pees will start attacking. When the purple and black have the lead their offense has less urgency. The Ravens were up 10-0 over the Jets and the Giants. They lost those games. Baltimore’s dreams were scrapped when the Steelers came from behind and scored with nine seconds remaining.
The Bottom Line:
When the Ravens start the 2017 season they cannot continue to shoot themselves in the foot. When the Ravens get back to playing football, after a long offseason, there needs to be more focus. Penalties may happen, but they shouldn’t happen as frequently as they did this past season.
So the Ravens need an attitude adjustment. The Ravens need to take care of business when they can. In sports, nothing can be taken for granted. The Warriors had a 3-1 lead in the NBA Finals and how did that work out? No more playing down to the level of competition, no more barely edging by, the Ravens have to start mauling opponents. No more complacency, no more making everything difficult, the Ravens have to start helping themselves, rather than hurting themselves.
Close games are fine against good teams.
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Against the Eagles though, did we need a last second two point attempt? The Ravens struggled against teams that they should have manhandled. Nobody is suggesting that every win has to be in blowout fashion. A win in the NFL, tastes the same no matter how it is prepared. What I am suggesting, is that the Ravens should have more games like their 38-6 win over the Dolphins, and less games like their one point win over the Eagles.