@DJ_BMORE asks: With limited corners, what do you think the defensive game plan will be? Particularly since we get exposed in a zone coverage. Especially cover 3.
Answer: Wow, this question goes right with what we just talked about doesn’t it? Well just about everyone at the cornerback spot seems to be listed as questionable, except JimmySmith who is out. If Marcus Peters can’t go or isn’t able to play his best Baltimore has fewer options than they’d like.
Let’s think about what the Jaguars do best. They like to run the football with James Robinson. Robinson averages 4.6 yards per rushing attempt. Robinson also has 46 receptions, which is something to keep track of. Priority one needs to be shutting down Robinson.
Think back to the Patriots game. The Patriots were very run dependent and were probably not going to get much done with Cam Newton in the rain via the passing game. The Ravens got gashed for much of the game but finally got aggressive. It was too late but a lesson was learned.
If I’m Martindale I’m not expecting much from Mike Glennon or Gardner Minshew in terms of big plays passing. I’d tell Marlon Humphrey to take D.J. Chark out of the gameplan for the Jaguars, hope the rest of the secondary can win their matchups, and try to own the line of scrimmage. That’s how I play this game, by forcing the issue more often than not.
Martindale can’t just do the same thing on every play. He has to switch it up. When the Jaguars need to get things done in the air though, the Ravens can’t allow the kinds of pockets that Baker Mayfield had to throw the ball on Monday night.
Blitzing the Jaguars on passing plays could force Robinson to stay in as a blocker. If I’m the Ravens I tell Patrick Queen that he has one job in this game and it’s to keep up with Robinson. He’s the best athlete and he needs to show that he can step up against a very underrated running back.