The Baltimore Ravens are built to beat the Kansas City Chiefs
The most interesting battle in the whole NFL schedule is the week 3 showdown of the Baltimore Ravens and Kansas City Chiefs. The Ravens are ready for Patrick Mahomes and company to come to Baltimore:
The Baltimore Ravens are built to win a Super Bowl. Getting to the Super Bowl will more than likely mean getting past the Kansas City Chiefs in the postseason. The Chiefs are incredibly good, to the point where even the most equipped teams will have their hands full against them. Here’s why Baltimore stacks up so well against Andy Reid‘s team in the third week of the season and potentially in the playoffs.
The Ravens have the best secondary in the NFL. It’s not a debatable point; it’s not arguably the best secondary it its the clearly the best. The safety combination of Earl Thomas and Chuck Clark is elite. The cornerback grouping of Marlon Humphrey, Marcus Peters, Jimmy Smith and Tavon Young is more than elite. The Chiefs have a lot of weapons in the passing game however the Ravens have more tools to stop them than anybody else.
The last time the Ravens played the Chiefs, they had just lost Tony Jefferson and Clark was making his first start. Smith was injured and out of the action and Peters was playing for the Los Angeles Rams. The Ravens battled the Chiefs well, with little to no pass rush and a far less ready secondary. The Chiefs already know that the Ravens will be hard to get by and the Ravens are a better team than they were last year.
The Chiefs attack the middle of the field better than any team in the league. That has a lot to do with Travis Kelce being the best tight end in football. It’s not going to get easier to stop Kansas City when Clyde Edwards-Helaire starts making an impact as a receiver out of the backfield. That’s why the Ravens commitment to the middle of the defense is going to pay off this season.
Patrick Queen gives the Ravens more ability in pass coverage than any linebacker the Ravens have had since Ray Lewis (other than maybe Daryl Smith). With better inside linebacker play and a great pair of safeties that Don Martindale can do a lot of different things with, the middle of the field won’t be as exploitable. Even with the speed the Chiefs can having coming across the field, the Ravens have the athletes to limit them.
The defensive line is going to be incredibly improved as well. The Chiefs won’t be able to run the ball against Baltimore. While Patrick Mahomes is okay being a gunslinger for an entire game, he’ll have to throw over two very tall defensive ends who can get their hands up. Calais Campbell, Derek Wolfe and the rest of the defensive line should also be able to change the launch point of Mahomes’s throws. Knocking off the timing is a big deal in the offense that Reid and Eric Bieniemy run.
The Chiefs are still going to score points and make big plays. Like we talked about before last year’s game in Kansas City, they are a team you just have to slow down. The Ravens aren’t shellacking the Chiefs to the tune of 45-6 the way this did to the Los Angeles Rams last year. That’s not going to happen, and no team in the league is going to do that. The Ravens should however have enough working for them defensively to slow down and frustrate the Chiefs.
Offensively, Lamar Jackson is a quarterback who gives the Ravens a chance in any game. Jackson has a skill set that a defensive game plan can only do so much to stop. Jackson gives the Ravens the same level of star power that Mahomes gives to the Chiefs.
In the last game against Kansas City, Jackson was a bit off. He still had 267 yards passing and 46 yards rushing. Mark Ingram averaged 6.4 yards per carry against the Chiefs last year, picking up three touchdowns and 103 yards. It’s unrealistic to expect the Chiefs to stop the Ravens rushing attack, and containing Jackson is something that rarely works for NFL defenses.
Mark Andrews went into last year’s battle a little banged up and wasn’t much of a factor. The fact that Nick Boyle had four receptions and averaged 14.5 yards per catch showed you Andrews could have done some damage with this match up in different circumstances.
The speed the Ravens have at receiver should be able to give Kansas City a bit of their own medicine. Matching up with Andrews and keeping up with Marquise Brown, Devin Duvernay and company is going to require the Chiefs to play mostly in sub packages. This means more defensive backs on the field and more opportunities for a run game we already know Kansas City can’t stop.
Even with all the things that work for the Ravens in this match up it’s going to be a hard win to get. Baltimore vs. Kansas City is a toss up, a main event and the most talent in any match up the NFL has to offer. The Ravens are built to beat the Chiefs. It’s no guarantee but it’s not an impossible mission. It can be accomplished.