The Baltimore Ravens offense had an impressive start as they went “boom, boom, boom” down the field for a touchdown in Thursday’s preseason game against the Carolina Panthers. Unfortunately that drive was the only shining moment for the offense and they struggled for the rest of the game.
Ravens Nation left the stadium grumbling about the 34-27 loss, but despite the loss, head coach John Harbaugh addressed the good things the Ravens did during the game:
“Very pleased about most everything about the game,” he said. “I like the way we played, I liked how we played.”
Then he added:
“I just didn’t like the four returns for touchdowns,” the coach concluded.
Painful as it was, the Ravens were plagued with a total of four turnovers, two returned for touchdowns.
Quarterback Joe Flacco played till the 3rd quarter; went 18 for 24 for 169 yards and one touchdown, spoke about the turnovers:
“We obviously turned the ball over, and you lose more games than you win in this league when you do that,” he said. “With what we did tonight, we’re not going to win a lot of football games.”
Flacco was successful in connecting with newly acquired wide receiver Brandon Stokley, but undrafted receiver Marlon Brown was the real spark on the offense with one touchdown. Brown may be the hidden gem the Ravens are looking for this season.
While some criticized Flacco’s performance, CBSSports.com’s Jason LaCanfora believes it is not time to panic; it will take some time for the new Ravens offense to sync:
“None of this should be a cause for panic, not by a long stretch…But I also wouldn’t be surprised if this transition extends into the regular season, and beyond, with so many new parts still clearly trying to get in sync.”
Ironically the defense also has many new faces, but the defense has always been the anchor of this team and even with so many new players, they are having an easier time gelling and protecting their house.
It is a different story with the offense. A quarterback needs time to build a relationship with his receivers, he needs to be able to trust that they will do their best to stay open and catch the ball without fumbling.
We know Flacco can throw the ball, what we don’t know is if this new group of receivers can successfully finish the job.
I’m not panicking, it’s preseason and I trust that Flacco and the powers that be will get the job done this season. It may take a bit longer to make the pieces fit…