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Ravens vs. Dolphins: 5 stats that stand out

Jon Meoli
Contact ReporterThe Baltimore Sun
5 stats that stand out to @JonMeoli ahead of the Ravens' game in Miami:

The Ravens' and Dolphins' seemingly-annual matchup typically says a lot about both teams, who often have serious playoff aspirations when they meet. It is basically an elimination game this weekend despite there being five games remaining. Here are five stats that stand out before Sundays' Ravens-Dolphins game, including tidbits on the Ravens pass rush, the many uses of Jarvis Landry, and the Dolphins' struggles against No. 1 receivers.

6: In each of the Ravens' past two visits to Miami, they've sacked quarterback Ryan Tannehill six times. Two seasons ago, it was outside linebacker Terrell Suggs who had three sacks, while Elvis Dumervil and Courtney Upshaw had one apiece. Last year, it was a big game from Dumervil, who had 31/2 sacks. The Dolphins have invested a lot in their offensive line over the past few years, using a first-round NFL draft pick on tackle Ja'Juan James and signing tackle Branden Albert in free agency, but the team has allowed 33 sacks in 11 games this year. With the potential of a backup center, Jacques McClendon, playing and a Ravens front seven playing at its best, another crooked number in the sack column isn't out of the question.

15: Dolphins star wide receiver Jarvis Landry is an obvious threat in the passing game, but also has 15 carries this season, second most among receivers behind Tavon Austin (Dunbar) of the St. Louis Rams. Landry averages 7.1 yards per carry, and the only big rushing play he's managed was a 22-yard touchdown in Week 6 against the Tennessee Titans, but it's clear getting the ball in Landry's hands is a priority. Combined with his 76 catches, the 15 carries put him among the league leaders in touches for a wide receiver. Only Atlanta Falcons receiver Julio Jones has more. Whoever is tasked with stopping Landry will be in for a busy day.

85.7: For all the talk of the Ravens offense not changing with Matt Schaub under center, look no further than his fourth-and-1 quarterback sneak in the fourth quarter Monday against the Browns for proof. Quarterback Joe Flacco was the team's go-to short yardage back the past two seasons before his knee injury, and it looks like they're not afraid to have Schaub plow through there, either. It was the Ravens' sixth conversion on fourth-and-1 this season in seven tries (85.7 percent conversion rate), and overall their league-leading 17th fourth-down attempt this year. With every win essential to keep their faint playoff hopes alive, expect to see more calculated gambles by John Harbaugh going forward.

2: Despite missing Week 1 starters Jeremy Zuttah at center, Kelechi Osemele at left guard, and Eugene Monroe at left tackle at various points since the bye week, the Ravens have allowed just two sacks in that span and have allowed 16 sacks this season. They kept Schaub mostly upright against the Browns, allowing just one quarterback hit and no sacks. The Dolphins pass rush took a hit in the past four games without outside linebacker Cameron Wake, who leads them with seven sacks this year. Their sacks per game fell from 3.3 to 2.5 once Wake went out.

86.4: The Dolphins, according to Football Outsiders, are the worst team in the NFL against opposing No. 1 wide receivers, allowing an average of more than eight receptions and 86.4 yards per game this season. Much of that responsibility falls on cornerback Brent Grimes, who is under fire in Miami for his play this season. Given how the Ravens' top receiver on a given day, be it Steve Smith Sr. early in the season or Kamar Aiken now, is targeted so often, it's fair to say they might have a good statistical game Sunday in Miami.

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