Reporting Rob Long
A week ago the Baltimore Ravens lost 26-13 to the Tennessee Titans. I remember pointing out how the Ravens potentially ruined a chance to score a touchdown when Joe Flacco decided to throw a ball over the middle to Anquan Boldin when he had Torrey Smith wide open on the right sideline.
Callers pointed out that Smith had not caught a ball in the NFL and that Joe did not have confidence in the young receiver out of the University of Maryland. I pointed out how quarterbacks make receivers stars all of the time by giving them the ball when they can do what they do best. I felt Flacco missed a golden opportunity last Sunday. Let’s just say he made up for that this Sunday in St. Louis against the Rams.
Torrey Smith had a coming out party while being targeted eight times with five receptions and 152-yards, including three touchdowns. Smith’s speed was too much for the Rams as he seemingly got behind their secondary at will… Smith even showed off his route running ability by catching a ball on a slant route.
With Lee Evans on the shelf, it looks like the Ravens have discovered a weapon. Throw in Boldin’s seven receptions and rookies LaQuan Williams and Tandon Doss were targeted a total of four times, it seems as if Flacco’s ready to spread the ball among the wide outs. That’s 26 out his total 48 attempts going in the direction of wide receivers. That’s 13 completions for 233 and an 18 yard per reception average to those players. That allows Ray Rice to average nearly 10 yards a run and Ricky Williams to average over eight.
The Ravens passing game kept the Rams on their heels all day. It looked as if even the linebackers were backing up at the snap of the ball. Cam Cameron took what their defense gave him and used the pass to set up big runs. They were effective running the football, even though they did not run the ball a lot.
Some logic would suggest that if they ran the ball more, they would have given Rice 200-yards rushing. I’m not so sure about that. I think Torrey Smith’s threat to get behind the secondary forced the Rams to look out on the perimeters which in turn gave wide open running lanes. That’s something for the New York Jets to have to worry about for next week.