Monday, August 27, 2007

THAT THING CALLED A PRESEASON GAME


In my last blog entry I asked whether the Ravens could match the Rangers offensive firepower and produce a 30 spot on the scoreboard. Now it’s really difficult to put much stock in preseason good or bad, but there are some concerns regarding the Ravens. But real quickly, back to the Rangers/Ravens comparison…many have said that the Ravens might not give up 30 points to a team all season in any single game. On the other hand, they might not score 30 in a game either judging from the sloppy play we’ve seen over the past two weeks.

Heading into that game, I had a list of 10 things that if I’m Brian Billick, I’d be focused in on. Below I’ve reposted those 10 things along with what we learned from the game in D.C. in italics.

1. The running game. Where is it? Answer: It’s still on summer break. Our own Dev Panchwagh wrote an article a couple of months ago entitled Where’s Willis? That’s a great question there Dev.

2. David Pittman, Derrick Martin and Evan Oglesby: One of these three needs to step up because something tells me that Samari Rolle isn’t quite mentally locked in and the sting of last year’s criticisms still lingers. I don’t think Corey Ivy is suited to be an every down corner. Answer: David Pittman showed some positive signs. Let’s call it a work in progress. And I’ll let it be known that the current mental make-up of Samari Rolle on the football field worries me.

3. Chris Chester: I haven’t been as impressed with his play so far this season as I was last season. Ben Grubbs is knocking on the starting right guard door. Answer: Chester played pretty well on Saturday although his stance still bothers me (he is upright at the line of scrimmage when the Ravens pass). He is very quick to the second level. Now if McGahee could only keep up with him…

4. Bart Scott & Jarret Johnson: Both seem to be chasing all the time in pass coverage. I want to see them make a play away from the line of scrimmage. Answer: Both played very well against the Redskins. Scott nearly made a perfect play defending one pass and JJ had his man well covered when called upon. Both supported the run very well.

5. Brian Rimpf: If he can be serviceable that could free up Keydrick Vincent who according to kffl.com is on the Jets radar screen. If the Ravens could get that No. 5 pick back for next year’s draft…Answer: Got a quarter?

6. Rhys Lloyd: He needs to be outstanding to make the team. There’s just too much depth. Answer: Good but not outstanding.

7. Musa Smith: Can you put away the matador’s cape and pick up your blocking assignments on passing downs? Answer: He didn’t have a chance but Justin Green borrowed that cape on Saturday. Musa did bring back memories of his 2006 preseason on his two second half carries.

8. Darling or Moore? This game decides it. Answer: Can I borrow that quarter again?

9. Might a great return game from Figurs free up Sams for a trade particularly if Cory Ross continues with his Maurice Jones-Drew impersonation? Answer: Stay tuned

10. A quick getaway out of Fed Ex Field where leaving the stadium is about as fun as Route 50 at noon on a Saturday in July. Answer: Whatever is was it couldn’t have been quick enough.

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