The 8-2 Baltimore Ravens have a difficult trip to L.A on Monday night to face the Rams. The Ravens are the most in-form team in the NFL right now, but the 6-4 Rams are fighting to remain in play-off contention.
Baltimore has a unique offense that is seemingly impossible to stop, led by sophomore quarterback Lamar Jackson. Jackson is one of the most dynamic runners in the league, and has greatly improved as a passer.
The Rams couldn’t be more different. Quarterback Jared Goff has a touchdown to interception ratio of eleven to ten. The Rams have also only scored 29 combined points in their last two games. In the same amount of games the Ravens have put up 90 points. Let’s look at the three keys to a Ravens victory.
Lamar Jackson MVP Game
Jackson has been in the hunt for league MVP all season. This is a big game, in prime time, that he will be able to show off his highlight reel runs on a national stage. This will be key when it comes time for MVP voting.
Jackson is so hard to defend because he’s multi-dimensional. His rushing ability is unheralded, and now he can dissect a defense with his arm. A 19-5 touchdown to interception is evidence of this. The Ravens offense freezes defenders with misdirection, opening up throwing lanes for Jackson.
Tight End Trio
Key to the Ravens passing attack this season is their tight ends. The trio of Mark Andrews, Nick Boyle and Hayden Hurst are the most utilized tight end trio in the NFL. Andrews has become Jackson’s favourite target, and currently leads the team in receiving yards.
Boyle is one of the best blocking tight ends, and has developed as a receiver this season. Hurst was a first-round pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, and has shown flashes of potential. These three will be key to a Ravens win on Monday night.
Ravens Secondary Stopping Rams Offense
Baltimore has arguably the greatest secondary depth of any NFL franchise. Marcus Peters has been playing at an All-Pro level since being traded from the Rams to the Ravens last month. Jimmy Smith returning from injury has been huge for the Ravens. He is one of the most underrated corners in the NFL.
Marlon Humphrey has quickly developed into one of the best young cornerbacks in the league. Having all three allows the Ravens to play man coverage with almost every team in the league. With Earl Thomas and Brandon Carr at safety, the Ravens secondary can stop a lot of teams.
The Baltimore Ravens will go into Monday nights game as favourites, despite being the road team. The Rams defense is still a formidable unit, but it will be very tough to stop this in-form Ravens team.
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