Baltimore Ravens vs. Atlanta Falcons: 3 big things to think about
2. This is a match up that works in the Ravens favor:
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The best thing about the Atlanta Falcons is that they have legitimate weapons for Matt Ryan. Julio Jones is one of the greatest receivers of all time, and Calvin Ridley is off to a strong start. Austin Hooper is a talented tight end and Mohamed Sanu is a very reliable target. Other than that, the Falcons don’t have a lot to work with. Their offensive line should give way for the Ravens’ pass rushers. Tevin Coleman is a decent running back, but he’s nothing to be afraid of. The defense of the Falcons isn’t fierce. The Ravens may be on the road, but this game is incredibly there for the taking.
The Ravens have been one of the best running teams in football since Jackson took over the quarterbacking. Assuming he remains the quarterback, the Ravens have the match up they want. Gus Edwards all the sudden has a very respectable 297 yards over the past two games. The Falcons run defense isn’t as respectable. Atlanta gives up 123.7 yards per game on the ground. If the Ravens run game remains on a roll, they will play into the strengths of Jackson. This will be Jackson’s best chance to crack 200 yards as a passer. The Falcons give up 273 yards through the air, per game. The Ravens just have to do what they have proven they are capable of in the past two weeks.
It’s really simple. If the Ravens don’t let Matt Ryan make this game interesting, the Falcons could get routed in their home stadium. Marlon Humphrey and Jimmy Smith have to have their A game. The pass rush has to be awake and active. The Ravens need to run the football, set up big plays for Jackson as a passer and have their offense dictate the terms of the game. The Ravens have no excuses not to win this game. It may be closer than the Ravens Flock wants it to be, but this had to be a win.