Five things to watch in Ravens vs. Broncos
As the Ravens (9-4) square off with the Denver Broncos (10-3) Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium, here's a checklist of key people and areas to keep an eye on.
-- Aaron Wilson
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4. How will the Ravens block Von Miller and Elvis Dumervil?( Grant Halverson, Getty Images / November 11, 2012 )
Left offensive tackle Michael Oher and rookie right offensive tackle Kelechi Osemele have their work cut out for them Sunday against the Denver Broncos' elite pass rushing tandem of outside linebacker Von Miller and defensive end Elvis Dumervil.
They have combined for 24 sacks (including 16 for Miller), 76 quarterback pressures, (45 for Miller) and 23 quarterback hits.
The Ravens have allowed 31 sacks and may need to utilize some chip-blocking assistance and maximum-protection schemes to keep quarterback Joe Flacco from being pounded.
Miller ranks second in the NFL with 24 tackles for loss. He had eight sacks and 10 tackles for loss in November and was named the AFC Defensive Player of the Month.
"I think without question it's an outstanding tandem, very, very unusual," Ravens offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell said. "Typically teams may have one at the one side, and then a guy that's maybe more of a power rusher on the other. But in terms of speed, dexterity, moves and just flat out strength, that combination is rare, those two guys. There's obviously the two guys over at Indy, [Dwight] Freeney and [Robert] Mathis, who pose a very good combination, and these guys are equally as good."
When asked if the Ravens will use maximum-protection schemes to keep Flacco upright, Caldwell replied: "We'll have to do whatever it takes to make certain that we can keep things moving in the right direction."