Ravens Q&A; with Mike Preston

Baltimore Sun columnist Mike Preston answers readers' questions on the Ravens' loss to the Indianapolis Colts and other topics about the team.


What happened to the offense against the Colts, especially the offensive line?  Why didn't the Ravens run the ball more? The way this team is playing, they may have problems on the road against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday. – Craig, Winchester, Va.

Craig, I don't think anyone understood offensive coordinator Gary Kubiak's game plan. This was absolutely the worst game he's called this season. He certainly won't be given a game ball. There should have been a change in the protection scheme early on. It was clear the offensive line, particularly the left side, could not handle the Colts' pass rush. The Ravens abandoned the run for no reason. They were never that far behind, and the defense bent but really held tough in the red zone. But that philosophy needs to change as well because the defense couldn't get off the field on third downs against the Colts.

What are your thoughts on C.J. Mosley’s game? I thought we might see how good and disruptive he can be. Aside from the interception, he seemed to be able to shed three and four blockers and still make solo tackles. – Brendan J.

C.J. Mosley is making an early case for Defensive Rookie of the Year. He is showing a good ability to shed blocks and find the ball. It also seems that if Mosley gets his hands on the ball carrier, he makes the tackle. The Ravens have to be excited with how this first-round pick is working out early, but keep an eye on injuries. That was the rap on him coming out of Alabama.

It looks as though Torrey Smith has gotten no better since his rookie year. His skills in catching the ball with his hands are not good. Sometimes, he looks clumsy, and oftentimes, he seems to pull up on deep balls instead of running through the ball to catch it. Any hope or is this as good as he gets, which means he is gone after this year? – Ken W.

Ken, you can see improvements in Torrey Smith's game since his rookie season.  I am not sure what is bothering him, as he referenced after the Colts game, but hopefully he can start focusing better on Sundays.  As for pulling up on deep balls, I think that Joe Flacco needed to lead him better on that last pass even though it was still a very catchable ball. 

Why did the Ravens only rush 15 times? It’s not like the game was out of hand. I know the Colts dominated time of possession, but the Ravens should have given the ball to Justin Forsett more. – Tim T., Westminster

Tim, I agree, the Ravens should have rushed more. It was a poor offensive game plan.

Will Arthur Brown play at all this year? – Bill F., Dundalk

Bill, look at it this way.  If there is an injury in the linebacking group, there is a replacement waiting on the sideline. But for a second-round pick to not be activated -- we're not talking about playing time, but not active -- tells you exactly what the Ravens think about about Brown as this moment. And it can't be good.

Do you think Jacoby Jones’ days are numbered with the Ravens? He can’t catch a pass. He can’t field a punt. I personally would give Michael Campanaro a chance to see what he can do on returns. And Marlon Brown has been buried on the depth chart, but I want to see him more. – T.J., Parkville

Jacoby Jones needs to get going. I am not sure what is going on with him, but he is the best return man on the the team. He provides a spark when he is playing confidently. He showed good burst on the catch he did make this week. I am not sure Michael Campanaro is going to be an improvement this early in his career. Marlon Brown should be getting utilized more. He played well as a rookie and deserves to be targeted more, considering the struggles of Jones and Torrey Smith.

Do you think the Ravens will make a trade or look for any tight ends out there on the market? I think that’s what is missing. Joe Flacco didn’t have his security blanket in Dennis Pitta with those 5- and 6-yard rhythm pass plays. – Corey C.

The Ravens were awarded tight end Ryan Taylor on waivers Tuesday.  He is regarded as a blocking tight end, though. As discussed last week, the Ravens should use Marlon Brown to fill Dennis Pitta's roll as a receiver.

Steve Smith was held in check by the Colts. What did they do differently that the Panthers and others haven’t been able to do this year? – Matt F.

Matt, the Colts have a No. 1 cornerback in Vontae Davis.  He took away Steve Smith for the majority of the game. One of the other receivers really needed to step up.

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