Last week, the Ravens improved to 3-0 for the second time in team history with a 34-3 win over the Browns. Ravens QB Joe Flacco threw for a career-high 342 yards. The Ravens got on the board first when RB Willis McGahee found the end zone for a 7-yard touchdown. The Ravens took a 10-0 lead into the second quarter after a 36-yard field goal from K Steven Hauschka. After another field goal from Hauschka, McGahee scored again, this time from 15 yards, to give the Ravens a 20-0 lead at halftime. Then, the Browns benched starting QB Brady Quinn for former Ravens QB Derek Anderson. The only score of the third quarter was a 9-yard run by Ravens RB Ray Rice. Then, in the fourth quarter, the Browns got on the board with a 29-yard field goal from K Billy Cundiff. To end the game, Flacco found WR Derrick Mason for a 72-yard touchdown.
Player of the Game: Ravens WR Derrick Mason-5 receptions, 118 yards, 1 touchdown
Next Sunday, the Ravens head to Foxborough to face the 2-1 New England Patriots. The Ravens have never beaten the Pats. These two teams met in Baltimore on Monday Night Football two years ago, when the Patriots barely held on for a 27-24 win. In two games in New England, the Ravens have scored a combined six points. The Pats offense is lead by star QB Tom Brady. Brady missed last season with a knee injury, and is yet to return to form. At running back, the carries are split between Fred Taylor and Laurence Maroney. Patriots WR Wes Welker is 50/50 for Sunday's game, and hasn't played since Week 1. The Patriots defense is likely to be without two of their stars, DT Vince Wilfork, and LB Jerod Mayo. The Ravens have scored the most points in the AFC, and are second in the NFL with 34.3 points per game. The Ravens defense will try to resemble what the Jets did to the Patriots in Week 2, when they shut down the passing game. Jets head coach Rex Ryan was the defensive coordinator for the Ravens from 2005 to 2008. In a nail-biter, I have the Ravens winning, 31-27.
Suggestion: On Sunday, the Ravens need to blitz, blitz, blitz. They need to put pressure on Tom Brady, make him make a pass he doesn't want to make.
Key Matchups for Ravens at Patriots
Ravens RB Willis McGahee vs. Patriots LB Adalius Thomas Edge: McGahee
Ravens WR Mark Clayton vs. Patriots CB Shawn Springs Edge: Springs
Ravens RG Chris Chester vs. Patriots DT Vince Wilfork/Ty Warren Edge: Wilfork/Warren
Ravens NT Kelly Gregg vs. Patriots C Dan Koppen Edge: Gregg
Ravens CB Fabian Washington vs. Patriots WR Randy Moss Edge: Moss
Ravens LB Ray Lewis vs. Patriots RB Fred Taylor Edge: Lewis
LB Taveres Gooden-Shoulder/Head-QST
WR Derrick Mason-Illness-QST
QB Troy Smith-Illness-QST
DT Justin Bannan-Knee-PRB
LB Antwan Barnes-Shoulder-PRB
TE Todd Heap-Back-PRB
LB Ray Lewis-Head-PRB
DE Trevor Pryce-Illness-PRB
WR Kelley Washington-Groin-PRB
LB Jerod Mayo-Knee-DBT
T Nick Kaczur-Ankle-QST
WR Wes Welker-Knee-QST
DT Vince Wilfork-Ankle-QST
QB Tom Brady-Shoulder-PRB
CB Leigh Bodden-Thigh-PRB
RB Laurence Maroney-Thigh-PRB
DT Mike Wright-Shoulder-PRB
That's it for this week's version of my Ravens Report. See ya next week.