xml:space="preserve">
xml:space="preserve">
Advertisement
Advertisement

Mailbag - What to do about J. Lewis

Michael: What type of year is Jamal Lewis going to have? I know that performance wasn't all him against the Titans -- the offensive line looks terrible. Should I trade Lewis, since there is nothing the Ravens can do about having a terrible O-line? The defensive tackles are in his face as soon as he gets the ball.

Jamal has been bad, and the offensive line has been awful. But it's going to get better. Just have patience. It's true, the Ravens running game has been hard to watch, a comedy of botched blocks and lost yardage. The biggest factor, more than the shortcomings of any individual or unit, had been the Ravens departure from a primarily I-form, run-based attack.

Advertisement

For years, the Ravens have been successful with a power-running approach, and they've done it with more or less the same personnel up front. They can do it again. But they miss fullback Alan Ricard more than anyone is letting on, and his return could be delayed another week because of a lingering calf injury. For that reason, Lewis is a mediocre play this weekend against the Jets. But I predict his slow start will soon be just a distant memory. Like a lot of people, I had big expectations for Lewis coming into this season, and I'm not going to revise down by much. I expect the Ravens to get back to running the ball with a purpose and soon, and for Lewis to benefit to the tune of 1,200 yards and 8 TDs by season's end.

Todd: Curious on your opinion. I've got two 'average' receivers (Drew Bennett, Santana Moss), and one above average (Joe Horn) -- with some interesting matchups this weekend: Horn vs. Buffalo, Bennett vs. Indy, Moss vs. Seattle. I can only start 2. At the moment I've got Horn and Moss starting. I think that Bennett is solid, but question his ability to get in the end zone. I fear the ineffectiveness of the 'Skins O, but my gut is -- after watching my fantasy team come from behind with three minutes left against the Cowboys and winning on Moss' two ridiculous TDs -- it may be worth giving him a start. Maybe the 'Skins found some light? Probably not. But that's where I'm leaning.

Advertisement

Always happy to weigh in, so long as I'm not held responsible if my advice turns out to be garbage. Which it sometimes does.

I would definitely start Horn vs. Buffalo - the Bills haven't faced a really good passing offense yet (not that N.O. necessarily fits the bill), and I think they'll struggle without Takeo Spikes in there. Also - and you mentioned this - the Saints will show up for their first game in San Antonio. You can't sit Horn.

Between Moss and Bennett, it really is a toss-up, and I never discourage anyone from going with their gut. But if it were my choice, I'd go with Bennett. I figure he's due -- he's had at least one big play in each game (53, 35, 43 yards) but has yet to get in the end zone. This week he will. I expect the Titans will be playing from way behind for much of their game with the Colts, meaning more opportunities for Bennett. Plus, last time he faced Indy -- 3 catches, 124 yards, 3 TDs. Tough to argue with that.

Moss was great on Monday night a few weeks ago, no doubt. I just can't see him coming close to that again, especially not with Mark Brunell taking the snaps.

Recommended on Baltimore Sun

Advertisement
Advertisement