The 2012 Baltimore Ravens are like a box of chocolates and you know how that goes.
A team that has been defined by defense since the post-Testaverde days is struggling to find out exactly who they are.
Clearly they aren’t the defensive stalwart that was once as predictable as death, taxes and a new dance song featuring Pitbull. Offensively they are the NFL’s answer to bi-polar disorder with a huge preference for home cooking and M&T Bank Stadium.
The flaws for the Ravens are multiple yet at the halfway point and still seeking an identity John Harbaugh & Co. find themselves atop the AFC North with the conference’s second best record at 6-2.
Maybe THAT is their identity.
Like Bill Parcells has often reminded us over the years, “You are what your record says you are” and for the Ravens through 8 games that means the AFC’s No. 2 seed.
But what can we expect going forward?
Weaknesses on both sides of the football make it difficult to predict a successful second half of the season. Defensively the Ravens can’t stop the run and they can’t get to the quarterback and that leaves their technically flawed corners and bad tackling free safety vulnerable.
Offensively Joe Flacco can look like Carson Palmer at his career best when at home and like Kyle Boller when on the road.
Fortunately the AFC is a very flawed conference and that along with the first half results will keep the Ravens in the thick of things beginning with today’s game against the Raiders.
Here’s what you can expect for the season’s next quarter:
- Ravens 30, Raiders 17
- Steelers 34, Ravens 20
- Chargers 23, Ravens 20
- Ravens 27, Steelers 23