Baltimore Ravens vs. Houston Texans week 2 round table
Let’s start out with this: Deshaun Watson is a really good quarterback. He was a star at Clemson, and he has carried that over to the National Football League. This is without dispute. What is also beyond argument is that JJ Watt is a Hall-of-Famer who can still cause problems for opponents, and tackle Laremy Tunsil is a good-to-great left tackle, albeit with some penalty issues from time to time.
That being said, the Ravens are a better team. They have a better offense, a better defense, better special teams, better coaching, and a front office that appears to be from a different dimension than the decision-makers in Houston. That is not saying the Texans are bad. I actually think they are a formidable team.
I just don’t see how they beat the Ravens without the Baltimore boys having a horrific performance, or Watson goes off for 500 yards, with five touchdowns. That can happen. Anything can happen. Heck, I once ate at a salad bar when an entire menu of red meat was at my disposal.
But it ain’t happening this week. And I ain’t eating a salad when I watch this game.
The Cleveland Browns boast one of the best defensive fronts in the NFL and they did an admirable job against the vaunted Ravens run defense. I just don’t see the Texans being on that level, and I think the Ravens will gash them up the middle, assuming Matt Skura is a week better and rookie Tyre Phillips builds off a pretty impressive debut. I also think Lamar Jackson shouldn’t have too many problems with the Texans’ pass defense, assuming he makes the right decisions — and he usually does just that.
This feels like one of those games where the Ravens won’t jump out to a 21-0 lead in the first quarter, but will instead just grow a lead consistently throughout the game by limiting the Texans’ offense and being efficient on offense.
• Mark Ingram gets on track and breaks the century mark, on only 16 carries. There will be one of those 40-plus-yard gains early in the game.
• Patrick Queen misses a few gaps and overruns a cutback run or two but will register his second sack of the season in just his second game. Watson holds the ball a lot, and Queen is a heat-seeking missile. That = sack.
• Jackson hits Boykin on a big-gainer — let’s say more than 50-yards. Shoot, let’s get crazy. Boykin tops 75-yards on the game and gets a score. He looked like a much more confident player last week to me.
Final score: 34-20, Ravens