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Twelve Ravens Thoughts following Week 6 loss to New York Giants

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Luke Jones
Luke Jones
Luke Jones is the Ravens and Orioles beat reporter for WNST BaltimorePositive.com and is a PFWA member. His mind is consumed with useless sports knowledge, pro wrestler promos, and movie quotes, but he struggles to remember where he put his phone. Luke's favorite sports memories include being one of the thousands of kids who waited to get Cal Ripken's autograph after Orioles games in the summer of 1995, attending the Super Bowl XXXV victory parade with his father in the pouring rain, and watching the Terps advance to the Final Four at the Carrier Dome in 2002. Follow him on Twitter @BaltimoreLuke or email him at Luke@wnst.net.

With the Ravens blowing another fourth-quarter lead to fall to 3-3 in a 24-20 loss to the New York Giants on Sunday afternoon, I’ve offered a dozen thoughts, each in 50 words or less:

1. In a performance littered with mistakes, Baltimore offered a master class of self-destruction late. The illegal formation on the sneak was infuriating. The bad snap and two Lamar Jackson turnovers in the final three offensive plays were inexcusable. Meanwhile, the Giants were the anti-Ravens with strong and smart play.

2. You’ll accept occasional hiccups with the good when you lean as hard as the Ravens do on Jackson’s dynamic abilities, but his passing hasn’t been very good for the better part of the last three games. His numbers on third down and in the fourth quarter must improve. 

3. The Ravens piled up over 400 yards of offense and averaged 7.0 yards per play while New York managed just 3.8 yards per play and 2.7 yards per carry. Situational football has to be pretty poor for that kind of disparity to result in anything but a comfortable victory. 

4. The Giants’ first touchdown drive included third downs requiring 14, 12, and four yards, and the Ravens couldn’t get off the field on third down on either of New York’s final two touchdowns either. Baltimore’s defense ranks 26th in the red zone and continues coming up small in high leverage

5. If not for the fourth-quarter collapse, Kenyan Drake would have been the story of the day coming out of nowhere with 119 rushing yards and touchdown. The run blocking was superb, but the veteran showed better burst and vision. Some more runs were warranted, especially in the red zone.

6. John Harbaugh didn’t express much concern about the knee tightness that sidelined J.K. Dobbins early in the second quarter, but I really didn’t like how he was moving on his final carry. You hope it was merely a temporary effect from the turf at MetLife Stadium.  

7. Mike Macdonald continues to mix and match at the nickel spot with Brandon Stephens, Damarion Williams, and Ar’Darius Washington all playing at least 12 snaps. Especially with free safety Marcus Williams sidelined indefinitely, this pass defense isn’t going to take off until a consistent No. 3 cornerback emerges. 

8. In the midst of a 106-yard receiving performance that included another touchdown, Mark Andrews was visibly frustrated at a few points, especially when the illegal formation penalty was committed. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen the All-Pro tight end look that angry during a game. 

9. With Rashod Bateman sidelined, wide receivers not named Devin Duvernay have accounted for seven catches for 54 yards over the last two games. I’m surprised how many talked themselves into the offseason notion that Baltimore didn’t need to replace Marquise Brown, but this team indeed needs help at wide receiver. 

10. A silver lining of the Morgan Moses heel injury — which thankfully wasn’t serious — was seeing Ronnie Stanley play 51 of 59 snaps and perform so well. For what it’s worth, his current Pro Football Focus grade would rank just outside the top 10 among offensive tackles if he qualified. 

11. Malik Harrison continued to show his versatility playing three different linebacker spots and recording five tackles — one of them for a loss — in a season-high 36 snaps. He’s been playing some rock-solid football over the last couple weeks. 

12. As concerning as their inability to finish remains, the Ravens are still in first place in the AFC North and play in a conference that boasts a single one-loss team in Buffalo. Yes, there’s serious work to do, but Baltimore is currently swimming in an Olympic-size pool of parity. 

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