Is it just me or does this game against the Browns feel a lot more important that a Browns game typically is? The Ravens are 5-2, but it hasn’t been smooth sailing all season. The injuries are starting to pile up, and the team has had a bitter taste in their mouths for two weeks now after they were dismantled by the Texans. The defense hasn’t looked good for weeks now, and the offense has taken some critical heat for not getting Rice the ball more. Baltimore hasn’t had a decisive win since week one and were really just a few breaks away from possibly a losing record. Still, this team is 5-2, playing a 2-5 team with a chance to get their 6th win. That is all I am thinking about now, and I hope the team is as well. It doesn’t matter how they have gotten here, all that matter is going forward.
First off, the Ravens stayed pat at the trade deadline. Not surprising, but Bryant McKinnie was rumored to be a fit for the Cardinals, for what it’s worth. I was hoping the Ravens would spin a trade for a corner, but I’m glad they didn’t give up a 4th round pick for Aqib Talib like the Patriots did. I do wish they went after Danny Gorrer who was waived by the Seahawks. Tampa snagged him to replace Talib, which I think was a great move for them.
Joe Haden said he won’t be shadowing anyone in this game. I guess that is good? Smith is clearly the bigger threat, so freeing him up from the lockdown corner for any amount of time is at least encouraging. Jah Reid is back and practicing. I kind of forgot about him, mainly because I didn’t see him being a big producer this year anyways. The line hasn’t been great though, so Reid may get some looks before too long. Pernell McPhee won’t be playing tomorrow. He is trying to get back to speed from an ailing knee that has apparently sapped his burst. I don’t mind him missing this game to get back healthy, but I don’t know if we will see the same player that we saw last year at all this season.
Other than that, the Ravens are pretty healthy going into the game. Terrell Suggs should play a lot, and that is great news. The defense has really been miserable, but they still have some great talent. With Suggs and Ngata still on this line, I have some good hope for the second half of the season. It all starts tomorrow at 1 PM EST, at Cleveland.