What they're saying about the Ravens

A collection of what other media outlets are saying as the Ravens prepare for Sunday's game on the road against the Buffalo Bills.

* NFL.com's Gregg Rosenthal ranks his picks for the top quarterbacks in the NFL so far this season. The Ravens' Joe Flacco falls under the "Almost there" category.


I couldn't quite pull the trigger to put any of these guys in the top 10 this week. Flacco has played better on Game Rewind than the metrics show. His best game was against Houston.

* Peter King of SI.com's Monday Morning Quarterback lists Tandon Doss as one of his "Special Teams Players of the Week" picks.


Tandon Doss, PR-WR, Baltimore. Cut and re-signed by the Ravens in their desperation for a receiver/returner, Doss made the play of the game in a 21-point Baltimore victory over Houston. Doss took a Shane Lechler punt at the Ravens' 18, veered toward the right sideline, and sprinted/tiptoed for 25 yards of the trip. His 82-yard touchdown run was a tribute to his athletic ability and jarring speed.

* In preparation for Sunday's game, ESPN.com's Jamison Hensley notes the Ravens' ties to the Buffalo Bills defense.

A week after their reunion with safety Ed Reed, the Baltimore Ravens will see familiar faces on the Bills defense when they visit Buffalo on Sunday. It's not the same level as Reed, but there are plenty of connections.

* Hensley also continues his weekly examination of Flacco, including a prediction for this week's game against the Bills.

The Ravens are going to want to run the ball against a Bills defense that allowed the second-most yards on the ground this season. That means another week of limited throws for Flacco. It's unlikely Flacco will crack 300 yards but he could produce a couple of touchdown passes against the Bills.

The Texans never once dented Baltimore's defense for a big play, with Matt Schaub's longest completion going for 18 yards, and Houston's longest rushing gain being 10-yard runs by Arian Foster and Ben Tate. Juxtapose that with the debacle in Denver, when [Peyton] Manning torched the Ravens new defense for nine passes of at least 23 yards. [Matt] Schaub's 25 completions on 35 attempts went for just 194 yards, a modest 4.5 yards per pass play. Houston (2-1) had scored 30-plus points in beating San Diego and Tennessee, but the Ravens never let the Texans get much offensive rhythm built.

Schaub was sacked three times, but pressured consistently, with seven different Ravens getting credit for a quarterback hit. Linebacker Terrell Suggs had a sack, and both defensive linemen Haloti Ngata and Arthur Jones dumped Schaub once each. In the secondary, safety James Ihedigbo did his best [Ed] Reed imitation, registering nine tackles, including two for a loss, with two passes defensed, including a key fourth-down deflection in the fourth quarter.

Add in the significant contributions in pass coverage of rookie safety Matt Elam and third-year cornerback Jimmy Smith, and it's clear Baltimore's defense has come together quickly in the past two weeks. The Ravens defense lost the likes of [Ray] Lewis and Reed, and linebackers Paul Kruger and Dannell Ellerbe, but its noticeably younger, faster and more athletic than any defense of recent Baltimore vintage.

* The Wilmington (Del.) News Journal's Matthew Albright reports on Ravens wide receiver Brandon Stokley's advice for a group of Delaware high school students.

State leaders are planning to distribute the game and personal finance curriculum to middle and high schools and community groups across the state. State treasurer Chip Flowers kicked off the program Tuesday with a sample game featuring students at Christiana High School.

"We want you to succeed in life, and to do that you need to know how to manage your money," Flowers said.


Flowers was joined by Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Brandon Stokley. Stokley told students that he's seen first hand what can happen to NFL players who make millions in a short burst, but don't manage that cash well and end up hurting.

* On FoxSports.com, former Ravens linebacker and special teams player Brendon Ayanbadejo discusses the use of IV supplements and the effects on recovery from injuries.

The evolution of the athlete is in many ways directly related to the evolution of medicine.

Starting around 2009, once-devastating injuries that typically took 12-18 months to heal saw recovery time cut in half to around 6-12 months for some.

In the years since, we have marveled at the super-human recoveries of many athletes who had sustained serious injuries. Even on a week-to-week basis, the ability to bounce back and be ready to play has improved directly with advancements in medicine.

Follow along as I give you an inside look at what many professional athletes do in order to extend their careers, increase recovery plus healing time, and make them feel extraordinarily super-human. Legally.

NFL power rankings

* ProFootballTalk's Mike Florio ranks the Ravens at No. 3, up three spots from last week.

What time is it? Not time to get on the party bus.

* ESPN.com lists the Ravens at No. 11, unchanged from last week.

Though Peyton dismantled them in the season opener, the Ravens quietly rebounded well. Baltimore is one of three defenses to not allow a passing touchdown in the past two weeks.

* Hensley offers expanded analysis of ESPN.com's ranking -- something with which he doesn't agree.


There was little argument for the Baltimore Ravens to be ranked higher than No. 11 for the previous two weeks. But a third straight week at this spot makes no sense. The Ravens (2-1) routed the No. 4 Houston Texans by three touchdowns on Sunday and they failed to move up one spot.


As one of the six voters for the Power Rankings, I had the Ravens at No. 5. It's obvious that few agree with me. Other voters leapfrogged two undefeated AFC teams (the Miami Dolphins and Kansas City Chiefs) as well as the Indianapolis Colts over the Ravens. So the Colts climb five spots after beating the No. 3 San Francisco 49ers and the Ravens stay put after beating a top-five team. The defending Super Bowl champions are now the seventh-highest-ranked team in the AFC.

* Former Ravens coach Brian Billick, on FoxSports.com, places the Ravens at No. 8, up four spots from last week.

It's only fitting that on a day when Ed Reed and Ray Lewis were both back in Baltimore that the Ravens scored a defensive touchdown en route to a 30-9 shellacking of the Texans.

* Pete Prisco of CBSSports.com moves the Ravens up four spots to No. 11 this week.

That defense came up big against the Texans. They might not be flashy on offense, but they can still play good defense.

* The Associated Press Pro32 poll lists the Ravens at No. 8, up four spots from last week.

* NFL.com's Elliot Harrison of NFL.com puts the Ravens at No. 11, up one spot from last week.

That was a heckuva defensive performance in Baltimore; my bad for changing my pick last week. My original thought was that the Ravens would show a lot of pride and thwart the Houston Texans' attack, but then I fell victim to "NFL analyst nervousness," given the loss of Ray Rice and the general poor performances by John Harbaugh's offense. Oops. Several big plays were made by Baltimore's front seven, especially Daryl Smith, who had 10 total tackles, a pick-six and a pass defensed. That's a heady stat line for an inside linebacker

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