It’s time for the NFL playoffs. The cream has risen to the top, as the sports cliche goes. And the teams that didn’t qualify are pondering why — and positioning themselves for the NFL Draft.
The Baltimore Ravens may have to do their best 2017 Philadelphia Eagles impression and find a way to the Lombardi Trophy using a backup quarterback. Controlling the clock and playing sound defense will be the key to any playoff success the Ravens will find.
GridironHeroics previews all of the NFL teams that open postseason play, and we’ll continue it through the entire playoffs.
NFL TEAM: Baltimore Ravens
2022-23 RECORD: 10-7
WEEKEND OPPONENT: Cincinnati Bengals, Sunday, 8:15 P.M.
NFL WEEK ONE POSTSEASON SCHEDULE: Who is playing where and when?
TRENDING?: Baltimore is fresh off of back-to-back divisional losses, including a loss to the Cincinnati Bengals who they play this Sunday. The offensive production just has not been there since Lamar Jackson was injured. Without Lamar Jackson, it’s reasonable to say that this team’s stock is plummeting, Trending down.
WHAT IS GOING RIGHT?: The Ravens are getting great production out of this year’s rookie class. Kyle Hamilton, Tyler Linderbaum, Travis Jones, and Isaiah Likely are all playing good football and contributing well to the team. The defense has also been playing as well as a Baltimore Ravens defense has in years.
WHAT IS GOING WRONG?: Lamar Jackson, Greg Roman, and the absence of any adequate wide receiver play. The Ravens need Jackson back for their offense to show the slightest bit of promise. Greg Roman has to be better at designing the offense to help his inexperienced quarterbacks thrive. Last but not least, the leading wide receiver for the Baltimore Ravens only has 458 yards. That is simply unacceptable.
SURPRISE STAR THIS WEEKEND?: JK Dobbins in the past few games has been the only bright spot for this offense. Him having a dominant day on the ground against a stout Bengals run defense is about the only way the Ravens can pull this game off.
THE KEY MATCHUP THIS WEEKEND?: This game will be decided by the trenches. If Baltimore can open up lanes against this Bengals defensive line, their offense can find more success than they did last week. If the Ravens’ defensive line can take advantage of the Bengals’ struggling offensive line and make Joe Burrow make any mistakes, this game will be more winnable than most think.
THE SUMMARY: Baltimore offensively has looked lost the past two weeks without their starting quarterback. Only a clock-controlling run game and great defense can give them a chance in this game.
THE PICK: Bengals by 10. WHY?: Baltimore’s defense will make plays to prevent this game from getting out of hand, but make no mistake. An offense led by a banged up Tyler Huntley with Greg Roman’s offense just cannot win a team a playoff game.
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