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Looking at the Baltimore Ravens' mid-season numbers

Looking at the Baltimore Ravens' mid-season numbers

When the Baltimore Ravens beat the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 4 and started their 2018 season 4-1, the buzz around this team began.

Joe Flacco had instant chemistry with his three new receivers and the defense was a force to be reckoned with. 

But now as the team heads into their bye week at 4-5, third in the AFC North and having lost their last three, the hype train on this squad has slowed down quite a bit. 

A week of rest will hopefully serve them well — something both head coach John Harbaugh and players noted — as they try to salvage their season in Week 11 against the Cincinnati Bengals.

As we have a week to reflect, here's a look at their top players and numbers thus far.

Top Offense

Passing yards: QB Joe Flacco: 2,465 yards, 12 touchdowns, six interceptions, 84.15 QB rating

Rushing yards: RB Alex Collins: 393 yards, 107 carries, six touchdowns, averaging 3.67 yards-per-carry

Receiving yards: WR John Brown: 601 yards, 34 receptions, four touchdowns, averaging 17.68 yards-per-reception

Top Defense

Tackles: S Eric Weddle: 39 tackles and one sack

Sacks: LB Za'Darius Smith: 5.5 sacks, 15 tackles and one forced fumble

Interceptions: CB Kenny Young: One interception, 27 tackles and two sacks

Other Team Statistics 

Total first downs: Ravens: 209 Opponents: 168

Third down conversions: Ravens: 60/132 (45%) Opponents: 44/125 (35%)

Total offensive yards: Ravens: 3299 Opponents: 2745

Total rushing yards: Ravens: 834 Opponents: 898

Total passing yards: Ravens: 2465 Opponents: 1847

Sacks: Ravens: 28 Opponents: 17

Field goals: Ravens: 16/18 Opponents: 12/14

Touchdowns: Ravens: 24 Opponents:18

Average time of possession: Ravens: 30:30 Opponents: 30:26

NFL Rankings

Offense

Points-per-game: 23.7 (16th)

Yards: 366.6 (16th)

Passing yards: 273.9 (10th)

Rushing yards: 92.7 (27th)

Defense

Points-per-game: 17.8 (2nd)

Yards: 305.0 (1st)

Passing yards: 205.2 (2nd)

Rushing yards: 99.8 (9th) 

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Greg Roman rebuilding Ravens offense with Lamar Jackson in mind

Greg Roman rebuilding Ravens offense with Lamar Jackson in mind

OWINGS MILLS, Md. -- Greg Roman is off to a running start in his new role as offensive coordinator of the Baltimore Ravens, working long hours to construct a unit that can fully utilize the talents of quarterback Lamar Jackson.

The Ravens closed the regular season with a 6-1 run behind Jackson, who keyed an effective ground game with frequent forays out of the pocket and downfield. Baltimore ended a three-year hiatus from the playoffs, winning the AFC North before losing to the Chargers.

The goal this offseason is to make an effective attack even better. Promoted last month from assistant coach/tight ends coach, Roman is rewriting a playbook that was originally devised for a pass-oriented offense led by Joe Flacco.

"We're trying, soup to nuts, from the ground up ... to hit the sweet spot with how we put this offense together," Roman said Tuesday.

The focal point is Jackson, the 32nd overall pick in the 2018 draft. After Flacco injured his right hip in November, Jackson took over and displayed the slick moves and elusiveness that earned him a Heisman Trophy at Louisville.

The rookie finished as the team's second-leading rusher with 719 yards. He spearheaded a ground game that finished second in the NFL with 152.6 yards per game -- including an league-high 1,607 yards rushing over the final seven games.

"You're going to see a lot of elements of that this year," Roman said.

The result, he hopes, is something on a much grander scale.

"We have run an offense here that has kind of morphed over the years, and we really want to start fresh, start new," Roman said. "Everything from our language, our formations, how we do everything. Rebuild the thing. That's one angle.

"The other angle is really, how do we want to move forward with Lamar Jackson? He's a unique player with a unique skill set, so let's build an offense that really accommodates that, as opposed to try to fit him into something that other people had once done."

Roman took over for Marty Mornhinweg in part because of his work as an offensive coordinator in San Francisco and Buffalo, where he helped construct effective attacks with running quarterbacks in Colin Kaepernick and Tyrod Taylor.

At the time of Roman's hiring, coach John Harbaugh said, "Increasing Greg's responsibilities will help us get where we're going on offense."

Constructing a new playbook is not an easy process.

"It's a real grind. We're really looking at this as a completely new beginning, as if we were a new staff," Roman said. "I've kind of compared it to putting your kid's furniture together from IKEA or something. If you make one wrong move, you've got to take the whole thing apart and start over again."

For the offense to work, the Ravens must fortify the offensive line, get a rugged receiver capable of blocking downfield and hope Gus Edwards can continue to develop after a rookie season in which he was activated from the practice squad in October before running for a team-high 718 yards.

Most of all, however, they need Jackson to be better. His running prowess and determination are fine, but he had only one 200-yard passing game and fumbled 12 times.

"Moving forward, consistent fundamentals are what's really going to take him to the next level," Roman said, "because he's got all the ability in the world."

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Joe Flacco passes physical, is set to become Broncos' latest addition to QB carousel

Joe Flacco passes physical, is set to become Broncos' latest addition to QB carousel

Joe Flacco's journey out West is making progress.

The 34-year-old was in Denver last week and passed his physical with the Broncos, according to sources of Sports Illustrated's Albert Breer, clearing a path for their trade with the Ravens to become official when the new league year begins March 13.

In a move that was expected as the team made it clear 2018 first-round pick Lamar Jackson is its future, the Ravens are reportedly sending Flacco to the Broncos for a fourth-round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft.

Based off of one observant flyer at Denver International Airport, the former Super Bowl MVP flew commercial out of Denver in a very Flacco-like move.

'Joe Cool' will presumably be the Broncos' fourth starting quarterback in three seasons and the latest addition to their quarterback carousel.

The Broncos drafted Brock Osweiler 57th overall in the 2012 NFL Draft, starting just seven games over four seasons and was eventually re-signed in 2017 where he only started four games. Then they drafted Trevor Siemian in the seventh round of the 2015 NFL Draft, starting 24 games during the 2016-17 season, before trading up in the first round of the 2016 NFL Draft for Paxton Lynch, who earned four starts in two seasons. They traded for Mark Sanchez in 2016, but he never made it to the regular season.

And finally, the Broncos signed free agent Case Keenum in 2018 to a two-year, $36 million deal. Keenum started all 16 games this season, going 365-for-586 for 3,890 yards, 18 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. However, general manager John Elway is now making room for Flacco for at least the next year. 

Flacco, who the Ravens drafted with the 18th overall pick in the 2008 NFL Draft, has no guaranteed money left with the Ravens and is working on a one-year, $18.5 million deal with two-team option years following that. It's not a bad deal for a team that can't commit to a starting QB. 

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