The Ravens secured a 23-17 win over the Washington Redskins to improve to 3-0 in the preseason. The Baltimore Sun's reporters, columnists and editors weigh in on the team's win.
Jeff Zrebiec, reporter
The number of hits Joe Flacco was taking and the lack of push the Ravens were getting in the run game conjured up memories from last season's struggles. However, otherwise, the Ravens played pretty well. The best sight was the reappearance of the pass rush. Solid play from the makeshift secondary was a welcome development as well. As for the offense, Flacco played a gritty and effective game. He left a couple of plays on the field, but you can't argue with his toughness and his success tonight in the two-minute offense. All in all, a quality effort in what will probably be the final preseason outing for the first-team offense.
Aaron Wilson, reporter
In an up-and-down performance by the Ravens' offense Saturday night where they struggled to run the football, quarterback Joe Flacco was sharp and is improving his timing with wide receiver Steve Smith as they connected for a touchdown pass. However, the offensive line and running backs took a definite step backward following a solid performance in the first two preseason games and running back Bernard Pierce suffered a concussion. The defense did a nice job of containing normally elusive Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III with young defensive linemen Brandon Williams and Timmy Jernigan applying pressure along with outside linebackers Elvis Dumervil and Terrell Suggs. The most encouraging development for the defense was the upgraded play of rookie free safety Terrence Brooks, who sacked Griffin and had an interception that was nullified by a penalty. Rookie inside linebacker C.J. Mosley continues to display that he's ready to make an immediate impact, intercepting a deflected Griffin pass.
Mike Preston, columnist
The Redskins ran a lot of blitzes in the first half and the Ravens couldn't handle them. Both offensive tackles, Rick Wagner and Eugene Monroe, were outplayed and so was left guard Kelechi Osemele. Ravens defense played well and Ravens finally got some pressure with front four. But Redskins are just pitiful, one of the worst offensive teams around.
Jon Meoli, reporter
The Ravens' offensive line had an uneven game, much of which can probably be chalked up to the amount of pressure and pass rushers Washington sent. But I was randomly struck by another potential problem. With guard/tackle Jah Reid, who was named earlier this week as the team's top backup at tackle, out with a concussion, the Ravens' second-team offensive line featured three rookies--James Hurst at left tackle, John Urschel at right guard, and Parker Graham at right tackle. Urschel has been a surprise in camp, but neither of the tackles has done much to warrant such a high-profile role. The offensive line seems dangerously thin.
Ron Fritz, sports editor
This was one ugly football game, with the Ravens' offense contributing heavily to the ugliness. This isn't the way to perform in the third preseason game when you're looking for a bounce-back season.
Monique Jones, Ravens editor
The Ravens couldn't have liked what they saw out of the offensive line. Joe Flacco was on the run a little too much in the first half. Flacco may have a new security blanket in Steve Smith as the two connected on a touchdown to end the half. All eyes will be on the health of Bernard Pierce. The Ravens can't afford to lose another running back early in the season.