The Ravens fell to the New Orleans Saints, 24-23, in Week 7. RSR staff react to the loss here…
What can you really say? One of the best clutch kickers in NFL history misses an extra point to send the game to overtime. This game and the Browns game are two moments the Ravens will probably look back on when they’re sitting at 8-7 and need to win a game and get some help to make the playoffs in Week 17. Outside of Jimmy Smith and Tony Jefferson the defense played well. Credit Joe Flacco for bringing the Ravens back.
Just an unfortunate and hard to believe loss.
I still don’t believe what I just saw happen at the very end of the game there, so I’ll talk about what happened in the previous 59+ minutes.
A lot of folks will point to the defense “blowing” a 10-point fourth quarter lead as evidence that nothing has really changed from Dean Pees to Don Martindale. I don’t buy that. I don’t think any less of Wink’s unit than I did a week ago coming off their shutout of Tennessee. Well, aside from the husk of a former All-Pro CB wearing number 22 out there. This was Jimmy Smith’s third game back. He should be up to speed by now. Instead, Drew Brees identified him as the weak link and beat him like a rented mule. Marlon Humphrey‘s surprise absence had a lot to do with today’s result, I’m afraid.
On offense, Marty has got to be the most schizophrenic OC I can remember ever having in Baltimore. He puts together absolute gems of game plans against Denver, Pittsburgh, and Tennessee (first half edition), and completely craps the bed in other games (Cleveland, today). The running game was having some success against the league’s top run-stuffing unit. Short, quick passes seemed to be effective. Instead, we saw far to many plays that took forever to develop, and/or involved some sort of misdirection or trickery. Against THAT defense? Come on, man. Hike ball, throw ball. It doesn’t have to be so complicated. I’d like to know how much of today’s plan was due to a lack of confidence in the patchwork/beat-up OL, but if that wasn’t the excuse? Yuck.
Also, they took over with 5+ minutes to go, down 21-17, and were throwing the ball like they had under a minute and no timeouts. Was the plan to really try and score while leaving Brees as much time as possible?
On the whole, I still think this Ravens team is very good. The AFC North title is within reach, as are five-seven more wins. Yanno…if Marty has a few good weeks in a row. This was a tough one to swallow, for sure, but they went punch-for-punch with perhaps the NFC’s second-best squad.
Congrats to Drew Brees, by the way, on both his historic accomplishments today. How that little dude does what he does back in that pocket baffles me, but it’s sure impressive.
That one is going to burn badly for a long time. What an uncharacteristic way for the Ravens to lose and what a time for Justin Tucker to miss his first PAT. Very unfortunate way to end the game after Joe Flacco lead the Ravens on a very efficient drive capped off by an unreal sideline throw to John Brown for the TD.
You could see how gassed the Ravens defense became in the second half after enduring so many long drives by the Saints. Too many long runs were being allowed in the red zone and Drew Brees was picking the the secondary apart in man coverage. Jimmy Smith’s performance rivaled the likes of Chykie Brown.
Just a very forgettable game. And with all the injuries on the Saints offensive line, you would have liked to see some more sacks, especially after last week.
Most Ravens fans are pretty pissed off right now. Count me among them, being married to a Saints fan. However, allow me to be positive here. The Saints were averaging 36 PPG before today. The Ravens held them to 24. The Ravens went to the wire with arguably the second-best team in the NFL. The Ravens are still a contender.
This game did nothing to dissuade me from thinking that. However, nobody will be talking about that. They’ll be talking about the drops. They’ll be talking about Justin Tucker missing his first ever PAT. They’ll be talking about the miscues, and glossing over what happened with the Saints, that kept the game so close.
Am I disappointed? Yes. This one hurt.
Am I giving up on the 2018 Ravens? Absolutely not. If anything, this game strengthened my belief.
What a time for Tucker’s extra point streak to be broken. This was a hard fought game and it’s hard to place blame because the team played disciplined football. Four-down football is really hard to stop and even harder when it’s the very first drive of the game.
Minus a few dropped passes this game could’ve easily gone the other way. Drew Brees is one of the greatest ever and their offense is dangerous right now. The team will learn from this and improve.
Today’s crucial catch game honored those lost to cancer with signs with names of loved ones. I’d like to honor my late uncle and aunt Tommy and Hazel Janney, both lost in the last few years. They were both big Ravens fans.
This game is very telling of what the Ravens (possibly) really are. They have fight and heart, which you can’t coach. They believe in this team, the players and the coaches.
This game was decided by an unfortunate hiccup in an otherwise brilliant career for Justin Tucker, which speaks volumes considering he has only been in the league for seven years. The defense was able to hold off the Saints, but allowed big plays and rhythm from Alvin Kamara and Michael Thomas.
Joe Flacco played a very solid game, and the running game seemed to be gaining more confidence. There is a lot to like about this game, but it is still a punch to the gut when you lose a game the way they did.
The true test for Justin Tucker and this team is if they can bounce back from this game, and look at what could have been.