Saturday, August 20, 2011

Ravens v. Chiefs: The Good, Bad, Ugly & The Megan Fox

There’s something painful about a preseason game. Things just never seem to flow properly. It’s a time for adjustment, fine tuning, dress rehearsals and sound checks. It’s even that way for the fans. WBAL interviewed some folks in the tailgate lots and some dude was on camera saying, “I think we can go 11-4 or 12-3.”

Hello, the lockout didn’t shorten the season.

If they could only shorten these preseason games!

THE GOOD: Tyrod Taylor is a playmaker and he is growing seemingly on a daily basis. Behind an offensive line that relatively speaking would make Swiss Cheese look like an inpenetrable levy, Taylor somehow managed to make chicken salad out of chicken you-know-what. He might not be your prototypical No. 2 QB but he absolutely is a guy you want on your football team. Word to Troy Smith apologists – this guy is already better than the former Raven and Heisman Trophy winner…Ray Rice ran with purpose and it’s easy to see how he and FB Vonta Leach will soon become the Ravens’ answer to Batman & Robin…Jalen Parmele and Anthony Allen also attacked the Chiefs’ defense with some very determined running…Back to Vonta Leach – what a load! Hey Brandon Siler, the license plate of the vehicle that trucked you was MD License Plate 44…Oniel Cousins actually played decently at right guard in support of the running game…Ramon Harewood had a plus effort as well at left tackle v. the Chiefs’ crash test dummies…Props to Jah Reid who was workmanlike and played nearly the entire game…Terrence Cody was a force in limited action as was Haloti Ngata.

David Reed made a nice catch despite tight coverage for a 41 yard pick up. He just seems to have that special ability to make plays…Jameel McClain was solid filling in for Ray Lewis while Dannell Ellerbe showed what he’s capable of when prepared and focused…Pernell McPhee may prove to be the best value pick of the 2011 draft class. The heavy handed LB keeps showing up on tape…Sergio Kindle is another player who seems to have that ability to be impactful, nearly blocking 2 punts…Cary Williams despite giving up the Chiefs only TD in single coverage deep in the red zone continued his solid play. No wonder the Ravens opted not to pay Josh Wilson nearly $5M/season…DT Bryan Hall had a sack and he’s had a productive summer. Keep an eye out for this sleeper…Haruki Nakamura continues to push to play beside Ed Reed. He’s beginning to separate from Tom Zbikowski who has been rather stealth. That said Bernard Pollard does stand in his way.

THE BAD: If Joe Flacco was a pitcher, we’d say he didn’t have command of the strike zone against the Chiefs. He was often high and wide with his throws and he never really seemed to develop a rhythm. As if we need proof that the rhythm skipped a beat or three, he took the field for a highly uneventful series in the third quarter and managed to move the offense 3 yards in 3 plays before getting the hook…Michael Oher is still in a funk. The team should be worried more about left tackle than right tackle…Special teams struggled for the majority of the game and they lost the battle for field position. Sam Koch eventually overcame a sluggish start to rally with a couple of late second half bombs…Terrell Suggs looked like he went through the motions, failing to contain Le’Ron McClain on a screen pass.

THE UGLY: The second team offensive line looked like they would have struggled in pass protection whether they were facing the Kansas City Chiefs or Archbishop Curley High School….Lardarius Webb looked sloppy and clueless as a punt returner. He fumbled away his first return costing the team 3 points and his presence of mind as a returner leaves much to be desired…Jason Phillips played like his shoes were tied together. He is pretty much worthless as a pass defender and fell once while untouched and dropping into his zone on one pass play…Anquan Boldin may need to update his eye prescription. His effort on a nicely thrown deep post by Flacco in the first quarter was weak. It almost looked like he never picked the ball up. Then in the second quarter he whiffed on a well placed ball from Flacco on a third and 15 which looked to be good for a first down…WBAL’s broadcasts are so minor league. Other than a BAL production, the last time I watched a game WITHOUT the yellow first down line was probably back in 1984. Seriously! And Qadry Ismail, he’s just flat out embarrassing. Can’t someone give him a job on QVC promoting vegetable slicers?

THE MEGAN FOX: In his Ravens debut Lee Evans validated the wildly supported opinion that Ozzie Newsome fleeced the Bills when he obtained the speedy receiver for a fourth round pick. Evans had 3 catches (all for first downs) for 68 yards – a very successful outing given the growing pains of practice earlier in the week. Welcome aboard Lee!


Jerry B said...

I echo all your sentiments, TL, and feel that this is a very talented team except for the OL - it would be a shame to squander all that other talent just because of another weak OL. That being said, we had a tougher schedule last year and still managed a 12-4 record and 2 playoff appearances despite a weak OL, less talent and woulda/coulda/shoulda gone deeper but for a DC who just never grasped the importance of a pass rush with whatever talent he had in lieu of the 7 and 8 man drops. That won't happen this year under Pagano as the 3 man rush becomes a faint memory. I also continue to have concerns about Cameron, whose "offensive" offense still lacks any semblance of cohesion notwithstanding the available talent.......

Anonymous said...

I'm utterly astounded that our backup defensive linemen look as good as they do over the past two games. Between Kruger, Art Jones, Sweet Pea McPhee, and Kindle, it seems like these guys are playing at a different level than either the Eagles backups or Chiefs backups. It is extremely encouraging. I'm actually not sure that Jones isn't better than Redding or Kruger isn't pushing JJ. And McPhee looks like the real deal as a pass rusher on the inside edge. I get a kick out of this group, can you tell?

Keep Away said...

Reid looked good to me. Better as a runblocker but much improved. Also impressed by Allen, the runner from GA Tech. He looks strong and imposing. Kind of Barber-like. McPhee can rush the passer. Jimmy Smith has potential to be lights-out but needs to finish plays off. He looks rusty but the talent is there. Leech and Evans and Pollard are real positive additions who will augment offense nicely. My only real concern is center spot. Don't have faith in Birk to stay healthy or Mattison to play effectively (though he's played ok the last two games). We need a center, Ozzie! And probably one or two backup veteran guards and or tackles. Then I love this team.

Harryos29 said...

Harry O'S 29 Aug 20th
TL I found what I txted you about...dummy me ..must be the SUMMER HEAT or Too Many Brewskies?

Anyway.. Enuff has been written about the Game. I do Like TYROD. Lee Evans will out Do what MASON may have done had he stayed; Lee is 7 years younger too.
Your comments about the "Q" are spot on.. He belongs on QVC...maybe. Nice Guy nice dresser...but NAH!!! WBAL can do better.
Lets just be ready for the STILLERs...

Harryos29 said...

Harry O'S 29 Aug 20th
TL I found what I txted you about dummy me must be the SUMMER HEAT or Too Many Brewskies?

Anyway Enuff has been written about the Game. I do Like TYROD. Lee Evans will out Do what MASON may have done had he stayed; Lee is 7 years younger too.
Your comments about the "Q" are spot on.. He belongs on QVC...maybe. Nice Guy nice dresser but NAH WBAL can do better.
Lets just be ready for the STILLERs
2:56 PM

richieG said...

Sadly, I agree w/your comments re Oher & LT being more of a problem than RT - seems to have slipped by JerryB, who is always defending Oher to me.
DQWilliams and AAllen look very impressive - hope they make the 53 'cause I don't think they'll sneak through waivers and get to the practice squad.
Great to see an aggressive D - say good-bye to Gooden and Burgess re some better/younger options. DavidReed ousts some familiar WR names - hope CamtheMan uses him more productively than the way he used Dante...same for LEvans!