Posted 29 November 2012 - 03:00 PM
Here's the stat that proves that - unless something changes - the streak won't make it through 2013:
The Ravens have scored points in those 12 games:
20, 13, 35, 23, 31, 24, 20, 24, 44, 23, 25, and 13.
This offense - particularly with the skills of Jones, Doss and Thompson in 3 and (potentially) 4-WR sets - should be scoring more than that.
I'm not trying to turn this into another "Fire Cam Cameron" thread, but I'm just saying that in today's NFL - not 1992 NFL or 1982 NFL - teams can get into field goal range in one play (and Dean Pees' defense has largely been getting big sacks and passes defensed once teams make plays to land them at that part of the field) and sometimes can score in one play.
Even career offensive underachiever Brad Childress is going to put the ball in Richardson's hands in space, and also spread defenses out with their speedy Gordon, Benjamin, Cameron, and Watson to create big plays. Boldin and the Ravens' tight ends just aren't that fast.
If you look at how Jay Gruden uses Andrew Hawkins and Mohamed Sanu, and how Roethlisberger looks when he spreads it out 4-WR, it's clear the Ravens defense - whether it's Ellerbe or Lewis out there - is not going to keep teams out of the end zone every week.
The AFC North is shifting toward a our-playmakers-will-beat-your-playmakers, use-space-and-illegal-contact-rules passing division.
Essentially, the Ravens must seize this opportunity to win the division and do damage because they have the one offense in the division that seems to allow defenses to condense/pin their ears back and the one offense that seems unwilling to attack with the speed standing on the sidelines. This division has always been hard, but it just seems to get harder. Look no further than A.J. Green.
A great candidate to beat the Ravens next season is the Browns, so long as Cam feels the need on pass plays to keep Rice and two tight ends in or Rice, Leach and a tight end. The Browns' Joe Haden is rapidly ascending to star status. There might be a game or two where he gets the best of Torrey Smith. If the Ravens want to keep their space-creating WR's on the bench, that defense will not have to honor the deep passing game.