Re: We Would have Blown Denver Out. Baltimore Will be a Tough Test.
posted at 1/14/2013 11:49 PM EST
In response to Paul_K's comment:
In response to TheExaminer's comment:
If I have to lose, Id rather lose at home to Ray than on the road to Gomer. If you lived in Indiana where almost every single person worships Horsehead and hates NE, youd understand. But I hope they dont lose at all, and I can yell a big ole in your face to Dolts nation.
Ray Lewis is a great experience guy for not making mistakes but at age 37 the linebacker has lost two steps. That's why he's retiring. He can't cover Wes Welker if he has no acceleration. He can't chase down Vereen going around the end if he's two steps late. He can't beat Sebastian Vollmer to reach Tom Brady. With his nasty-looking Denver finger injury, I don't know if he can catch interceptions or wrap up tackles that well with a club for an arm. If all he does is direct traffic, he'll make a good coach next year.
Let's not talk about the matchup as if the Ravens would put Ray Lewis on Welker or Hernandez. They know Ray can't keep up, so they'll assign a nickel corner or a faster linebacker on those guys.
At this point, I think Ray Lewis might be their worst 'backer. He just looked old and slow in that Denver game (but some of it may have been the thin Denver air). Lewis is the emotional and mental leader, so he does make that defense better. I would be more worried about guys like Kruger and Ngata and other guys who can maybe push the Patriots O-Line around and get pressure on Brady or plug up our running game.
There's no doubt that Baltimore is a physical team, so we'll need to beat them in the trenches. To win this game, we'll need our offensive line to play well like they did against the Texans. We'll need Wilfork to be his typical self and swallow Ray Rice, and we'll need our pass rushers to bother Flacco. We can talk all week about matchups like Talib vs. Torrey Smith or Hernandez vs. whoever they assign to cover him, but I think the outcome of the game will simply come down to which team wins the battle at the line of scrimmage.