Quick Links

Ravens-Jaguars Instant Analysis


Ravens-Jaguars Instant Analysis

Ravens 48, Jaguars 17
M&T Bank Stadium

The defense didn't give up the big plays and the offense made them Thursday night as Baltimore had five touchdown drives of 80 yards or more as they scored their most points in a preseason game in more than a decade.

Coach John Harbaugh played his first string for the first half and they took a 13-3 lead at the break behind quarterback Joe Flacco and the no-huddle offense. Then the reserves, led by quarterback Tyrod Taylor, poured it on.

"We're starting to grow at it," Flacco said of the no-huddle. "But I still think we have a ways to go to get it to where we really want it to be and really successful with it."

The 48 points was the most scored in the preseason by the Ravens since 2001 vs. the New York Giants when they posted 38.

The first-team defense didn't allow an offensive touchdown though it primarily used basic coverages.

"The first two preseason games, we don't game plan for anything," said safety Bernard Pollard. "For the little game-planning we did tonight, we stepped in and played well. We're still trying to keep everything simple with our defense."

Player of the game: Flacco went 27-for-36 passing for 266 yards, two TDs and one interception for a 102.3 passer rating. He completed passes to nine different receivers, including 11 to wideout Torrey Smith. Flacco exited after the first series in the third quarter.

Telltale stat: Flacco insisted he wanted to be less predictable in the red zone, which means passing more on first down, and he got his wish. Flacco went 7-for-10 passing inside Jacksonville's 20-yard line. Baltimore got there three times with Flacco, scoring touchdowns twice en route to a 20-3 lead before this departure.

Turning point: The hurry-up offense finally paid dividends with a touchdown as the Ravens took a 10-0 lead in the second quarter. While the running game was non-existent on the drive, Flacco went 8-for-9 for 87 yards passing. He hit rookie Bobby Rainey on a wheel route out of the backfield for 17 yards on third down to keep the drive alive and finished it by finding Anquan Boldin in the back of the end zone on play action on third and short.

Highlights: After the secondary was shredded in the first two preseason games, it was far better this time. Of course, Jags quarterback Blaine Gabbert isn't Atlanta's Matt Ryan or Detroit's Matthew Stafford. Gabbert finished 11 of 21 for 117 yards, no touchdown passes and a 68.9 rating. ... Rookie kicker Justin Tucker made his case to win the job from veteran Billy Cundiff. Tucker nailed a 53-yarder with room to spare in the second quarter. He went 2-for-2 for the game. ... A block by Anthony Allen opened a hole for Jacoby Jones to return a kickoff 51 yards in the second quarter ... Pernell McPhee, who had been excused from camp last week because of a death in the family, got a hand on a field goal attempt by Josh Scobee that hit the crossbar in the third quarter. ... Receiver LaQuan Williams caught a pass from backup quarterback Tyrod Taylor, spun out of a tackle and went 35 yards. That led to a eight-yard touchdown catch by a well-covered Williams. ... Taylor engineered three touchdown drives. ... Rainey caught a check down pass from Taylor near the line of scrimmage and ran it 48 yards for a score. ... Rookie Deonte Thomspon returned a kickoff in the fourth quarter 63 yards.

Lowlights: Rookies Bernard Pierce and Rainey, in a heated battle for the No. 2 spot at running back next to Ray Rice, combined for just 42 yards on 12 carries. .... Safety Emanuel Cook went down in the third quarter on kick return coverage. He had his right leg wiped out by Allen in a collision and had to be carted off the field. ... Cornerback Corey Graham went down in the third quarter and was taken to the locker room to be evaluated for a concussion. ... Taylor made a poor throw into coverage and was intercepted by Antonio Dennard who returned it 55 yards for the Jags' first touchdown.

Notables: Bobbie Williams started at right guard in place of Marshal Yanda, who sat out with a knee injury. ... Albert McClellan started at rush linebacker in front of rookie Courtney Upshaw.

Up next: It's nail-biting time as roster will be trimmed to 75 players on Monday. ... The Ravens close the preseason at the St. Louis Rams on Thursday at 7 p.m. ET.

Quick Links

Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Lamar Jackson is his own biggest critic

USA TODAY Sports Images

Baltimore Ravens Roundup: Lamar Jackson is his own biggest critic

Kick off your Friday with the latest Baltimore Ravens news including how quarterback Lamar Jackson has fared during OTAs.

Player/Team Notes: 

1. Following a January surgery on his left ankle, safety Tony Jefferson remains sidelined after the first week of OTAs. Originally, Jefferson was expected to return 4-6 weeks after surgery. However, now that it's 5 months later, his return timetable is becoming more and more concerning. 

2. Quarterback Lamar Jackson spoke with Ravens media Thursday about his progress not only learning the new offense implemented by Offensive Coordinator, Greg Roman, but learning the names of his new teammates as well. After another day of OTAs, Jackson was his biggest critic despite a solid day of running plays namely passing drills. “I’d say my first day, I sucked,” Jackson said to Ravens media. “Second day, I did better. Today was alright, but it could have been better. I always try to be perfect in practice. It was alright for the first week.”

Looking Ahead:

July 15: 4 p.m. deadline to get a long-term deal done with designated franchise tag players.

The 2019 NFL schedule is set! See the Baltimore Ravens defend the AFC North at M&T Bank Stadium this season. Get your tickets now at www.BaltimoreRavens.com/tickets.

Credit: Rotoworld and Baltimore Ravens for news points.


Quick Links

'I started to realize that I’m not broken': Steve Smith opens up about mental health and depression

USA Today Sports images

'I started to realize that I’m not broken': Steve Smith opens up about mental health and depression

Former Carolina Panthers' star receiver Steve Smith spoke in front of a crowd of over 400 people at the fifth annual Wake up for Wellness breakfast that was sponsored by Mental Health America of Central Carolinas.

The 16-year veteran and current NFL Network analyst touched on the importance of seeking help for bouts with depression and spoke of battles that he has faced with the disease.

“On the outside you’ll see a tough exterior. But on the inside, I’m just broken or I believe even more broken than the average man. ... Because when the stadium goes dark and the cheers stop, you’re still looking for that pat on the back,” Smith said. “Throughout my whole career, I struggled with that.”

Smith discussed that in the beginning, he was so concerned about the stigma regarding mental health, that he opted for the professional to meet him for housecalls, and as time passed he realized the importance of speaking up.

“I started to realize that I’m not broken,” he said. “I’m not being sent back to the manufacturer ... I get up every morning and figure it out.”

Smith's comments on the issue came to light just a day after the NFL and NFLPA announced new legislation that focuses on mental well being.

The newly formed Comprehensive Mental Health and Wellness Committee will develop programs for members of the NFL in addition to collaborating with local and national mental health and suicide prevention organizations. Each team will be mandated to retain a Behavioral Health Team Clinician for assistance that will be required to be available to players at the individual team facilities for at least 8-12 hours per week and must conduct mandatory mental health education sessions for players and coaching staff.