Here’s what The Baltimore Sun sports activities workers needed to say instantly after the Ravens’ 37-3 win over the visiting Seattle Seahawks in Sunday’s Week 9 sport at M&T Bank Stadium.
Brian Wacker: The Ravens protection is the very best within the NFL. The metrics say it and so do the outcomes.
Baltimore has performed right down to a few of its opponents this season — shedding to the Colts and Steelers — but it surely’s not as in the event that they didn’t have a number of alternatives to win these video games, both. Yet once they’ve performed notable opponents — the Bengals, Browns, Lions and Seahawks — their play has reached one other degree. That’s very true on protection. They’ve given up fewer factors per sport than any staff within the league and have extra sacks than anybody, regardless of not having a famous person edge rusher. That success speaks to the scheme of defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald and his means to get probably the most from his gamers.
Offensively, the Ravens nonetheless had some issues — notably Lamar Jackson fumbling for the ninth time — however up to now they’ve confirmed they will principally overcome these types of mishaps. And none got here at a vital juncture of the sport. Then they did what they at all times do and leaned on a potent speeding assault. We noticed why followers are enthusiastic about rookie Keaton Mitchell, who confirmed off the type of velocity the Ravens haven’t had within the backfield in a very long time.
Mike Preston: The Ravens have lastly hit a superb degree of consistency, and they’re dismantling the very best groups within the NFC. It’s not about how effectively they will play, however can they put collectively three or 4 high quality video games in a row within the postseason? If quarterback Lamar Jackson and center linebacker Roquan Smith keep wholesome within the second half of the season, the Ravens’ ceiling is extraordinarily excessive.
Childs Walker: The Ravens constructed a 14-point halftime lead because of dominant play from their defensive entrance and a assorted working assault that stored Seattle off stability. They went to the locker room with 17 first downs to the Seahawks’ 4. The Ravens’ edge defenders have wildly exceeded expectations, and Kyle Van Noy’s strip sack stored the Seahawks from constructing any momentum after they recovered an Odell Beckham Jr. fumble. As of their commanding win over the Detroit Lions two weeks earlier, the Ravens didn’t get careless with their benefit. They scored on all three of their drives within the third quarter, and their protection performed like what it simply is perhaps — the very best within the league. The Ravens have now trampled two NFL contenders in a span of three weeks. As they put together for a pair of essential AFC North video games, they’re wanting an increasing number of like a Super Bowl contender.
Jacob Calvin Meyer: Two weeks in the past, the Ravens welcomed a division-leading NFC staff to M&T Bank Stadium and got here away with one of the vital spectacular wins of the NFL season. Sunday was merely deja vu. After pulverizing the Detroit Lions in late October, the Ravens did the identical to the Seattle Seahawks on Sunday. Don’t get it twisted, the Seahawks aren’t any joke. They have a coach with a possible Hall of Fame resume, a star-studded offense and a strong protection. None of that mattered Sunday, although, because the Ravens additional established their place as one of many NFL’s greatest groups.
C.J. Doon: Early within the CBS broadcast, analyst and former quarterback Tony Romo mentioned he doesn’t assume any staff can come into Baltimore in January and win. At first blush, that felt like a daring assertion. But given how effectively the Ravens are taking part in on each side of the ball, they is perhaps Super Bowl favorites.
We’ve heard that earlier than round this time of yr in the course of the Lamar Jackson period, and every time the Ravens have did not advance previous the divisional spherical. But one thing feels slightly bit completely different this yr. Perhaps it’s the balanced offense directed by new coordinator Todd Monken, the doubtless historic protection (shades of 2000?) or the unequalled depth. And, after all, Jackson taking part in at an MVP-caliber degree.
Consider the unlikely contributors to this 7-2 begin. Geno Stone leads the NFL with six interceptions after beginning the season on the bench. Jadeveon Clowney and Kyle Van Noy — free brokers any staff may have signed — are fueling a go rush that ranks first within the league in sacks. Gus Edwards, Justice Hill and rookie Keaton Mitchell look greater than able to main the speeding assault in J.Okay. Dobbins’ absence. How lengthy can they stick with it?
One factor to contemplate: Baltimore’s two greatest performances have come towards the NFC. The Ravens gained’t see these groups once more within the postseason. Matchups towards the Browns, Bengals, Chargers and Jaguars over the subsequent six weeks will really resolve whether or not the Ravens are the beasts of the AFC.
Tim Schwartz: The Ravens entered the week as Super Bowl favorites, based on DVOA, and walked off the sector Sunday with none doubts about that. This protection is the very best in Baltimore since … their final championship staff? Adding the velocity of Keaton Mitchell to the backfield really feels prefer it was the lacking piece of the offense. Dare I say Lamar Jackson is a sport supervisor proper now, however he doesn’t want to hold the load for the Ravens to attain factors. That’s new — and welcomed. If Zay Flowers, Rashod Bateman or Odell Beckham Jr. can discover consistency and achieve Lamar’s belief, look out. But even with out it, Mark Andrews isn’t going anyplace. I don’t see any holes in Baltimore proper now.