Defensive Notes vs. Texans 10/21/12
Much is not right, but we’ll leave that for the coaches and the bye week.
There is also plenty of blame to be dealt, but I’m going to focus on the Ravens’ lone (and very significant) positive.
The broadcast of Sunday’s game would have upset me if I were a Texans’ fan.
Dan Dierdorf maintained four quarters’ worth of shock on the return of Suggs peppered in with some praise of the courage of Osemele (after the crew missed him re-entering on the Ravens TD drive), and the difficulties of Flacco. There was precious little about the rise of the Texans as the lone superpower of the AFC. As of now, I’d expect them to be significant favorites to win each of their two playoff home games.
The Ravens most similar loss of the Harbaugh era was their 31-3 disemboweling at Indianapolis in Week 6 of the 2008 season. There was very little positive following that week. Chris McAlister was benched versus the Dolphins, but the Ravens responded by winning 11 of their next 13 games before losing to Pittsburgh in the AFCC.
The Texans had 75 competitive snaps which exclude one kneel:
- Versus the Run: 36 plays, 183 yards, 5.1 YPC
- Versus the Pass: 39 plays, 256 yards, 6.1 YPP
- Overall: 75 plays, 422 yards, 5.6 YPPA
By number of defensive backs:
- 3 DBs: 8/35, 4.4 YPP
- 4 DBs: 49/313, 6.4 YPP, 2 sacks
- 5 DBs: 16/67, 4.2 YPP
- 6 DBs: 2/7, 3.5
By number of pass rushers:
- 3: 4/0, 0.0 YPP
- 4: 25/156, 6.2 YPP, 1 sack
- 5: 8/74, 9.3 YPP, 1 sack
- 6: 2/9, 4.5
- 7: None
The return of Terrell Suggs has enormous implications for the defense in the 2nd half and was worthy of Dierdorf’s gushing:
- He held the left edge effectively, turning the play inside on the Texans’ first 2 offensive snaps to set up 3rd and 3.
- He leapt for a near PD on the incomplete pass to 3-and-out the Texans (Q1, 13:54)
- He lined up at LDE and worked off the double team on Ngata to find an uncontested path to Schaub for a sack on just his 7th play back (Q1, 7:51)
- He floated to the OLS to cover Tate (Q1, 7:17) and pancaked him 5 yards behind the LoS as Schaub threw incomplete to Daniels.
- He lined up at RDE and pursued Foster all the way across the field to make the tackle at the right numbers (Q1, 7:09) to complete the 2nd straight 3 and out.
- He lined up at RDE and pancaked Duane Brown, one of the league’s better LTs, then worked off another double on Ngata to track down Schaub for a QH
- He leapt to record a PD (Q2, 3:08) as Foster missed a cut block
- He covered Daniels on a 0 cross and ripped the TE to the ground as the ball arrived incomplete.
- He jammed Daniels, then finding himself near Foster and 3 offensive linemen, diagnosed the screen and jammed Foster. That forced Schaub to ground the ball as Ngata pressured him (Q3, 12:12)
- While the Texans probed early (see above), Suggs set the edge effectively (4.0 YPC with hi, 5.7 YPC without) for the bulk of the game.
Despite being noticeably fat, somewhat slow, and seemingly unable to take his normal stance, Terrell didn’t simply focus on one thing he could do well, but instead was tested in most of his normal responsibilities. He was again the best Raven defender on the field. He played 42 of the team’s 75 snaps and the Texans averaged 4.6 YPPA with him in and 7.0 YPPA with him on the sidelines.