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With the Ravens defense suddenly looking vulnerable, it's time to do a quick review.

When the secondary was torched for 436 yards by San Diego's Philip Rivers in Week 2, coach John Harbaugh said his defensive backs tried to do too much and the result was weakened pass coverage.

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When the Ravens' run defense was gouged for 120 yards by Cedric Benson last week, defensive coordinator Greg Mattison said the biggest problem was "gap integrity," or players going out of their gaps to make plays.

So in two of five games, players have felt the need to do more than they are asked to do. Why? Pressure? Expectation? Injury? Blown assignments?

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The Ravens aren't into explaining their vulnerabilities, but it seems likely a combination of all of the above. Freelancing is hardly their only problem. Today, the defense gets full measure of itself and its reputation. Is this a secondary that can withstand the darts thrown by Brett Favre? Is it a defensive front that can get a piece of Adrian Peterson? And do these things simultaneously?

Here are a few things to look at today as the Ravens try to get back on track:

(1) Defensive tackle Haloti Ngata has a back injury. He comes off the field often (third downs and even first downs last week). He gets double-teamed often. He deserved to go to the Pro Bowl a year ago and was overlooked. This year he's having trouble getting going.

(2) Defensive end Terrell Suggs has 2.5 sacks. Yes, one was a great strip-and-sack against the Patriots that resulted in a touchdown. But Suggs is not a force in the pass rush this season. It's past time to talk about him not being in game shape. It's time for him to get to the quarterback. Going home to Minneapolis may help.

(3) Outside of linebacker Jarret Johnson, who has delivered the most consistent pressure on the passer, the Ravens haven't done much to scare the quarterback. They rank a middle-of-the-pack 13th in sacks per play in the NFL. Mattison has indicated he is disappointed. There are too many times when players are one-on-one and don't win the battle that it's neutralized the once feared rush. Beating the one-on-one is a must if you're not going to bring the house or overload the offense, a favorite ploy of Rex Ryan.

(4) How do the Ravens attack the Vikings receivers? Bernard Berrian is a major threat, but Sidney Rice is just as dangerous. Favre's leading receiver so far is the checkdown man, running back Chester Taylor, the former Raven. Which receiver gets safety treatment? Which defender gets safety help? Forget the complaints about penalties. As Harbaugh says, the Ravens haven't played well enough yet. They will be stretched to the max to defend the Vikings' versatile offense. If they don't all handle their assignments, they'll take a three-game losing streak into the bye week.

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