It wasn’t the prettiest, or even what the Ravens and their fans were accustomed to over the last year, but Sunday's effort was enough to turn a performance with a few mistakes and blemishes into a 14-point win over Washington at FedEx Field.
In a 31-17 win, the team’s pass-rush came alive, quarterback Lamar Jackson showcased his speed on a 50-yard touchdown run and the Ravens jumped to 3-1 on the season.
Here are a few players whose stocks are up, and down, after the win:
Stock up: Mark Andrews
Andrews rebounded after a brutal week against the Chiefs to post, on paper, a modest afternoon. But of the three catches he made, two went for touchdowns.
After a week headlined by brutal and ill-timed drops, Andrews found the end zone again as he and Jackson connected for the Ravens’ only two passing touchdowns of the day.
Andrews wants to be considered at the top of the league’s tight end rankings, and Sunday’s performance was one to get him back on track.
“The criticism is fair,” Andrews said. “If you’re going to be the guy, you’ve got to make those plays. That’s great. I love the criticism, I feed off that.” Stock up: Marlon Humphrey
It’s hard for Humphrey’s stock to get any higher. He just signed a five-year contract extension with the Ravens, set to keep him in Baltimore until the 24-year-old turns 30.
Sunday, his forced fumble gave the Ravens a short field to work with. The offense only needed two plays to punch one in the end zone. His turnovers, while valued at any time, have seemingly come at the best possible moments in the last year.
His forced fumble jump-started a sluggish Ravens team early. His forced fumble a week ago led to an L.J. Fort scoop-and-score. Last year, his strip of Steelers wideout JuJu-Smith Schuster was hailed as a turning point in the season.
So not only do opposing offenses have to worry about Humphrey before, and when, the ball is in the air, they’ve got to keep an eye out for him once a catch is made.
Stock up: Matthew Judon/entire pass rush
Judon has been close over the last few weeks, and said postgame he felt he had good rushes in the first three games despite no sacks.
Sunday, he got his first two sacks of the season. He also ended the game with five quarterback hits. Both were team-highs.
As a whole, the pass rush came together after a bad week against the Chiefs and hit Washington quarterback Dwayne Haskins nine times, sacking him three. The other sack went to outside linebacker Jaylon Ferguson, which was also his first sack of the season.
With Washington, and now Cincinnati and Philadelphia, on the schedule, the Ravens’ pass rush is set up to thrive against teams with horrific, or horrifically injured, offensive fronts. Sunday might be the start of a nice push for the entire unit.
Stock down: Lamar Jackson’s deep passing
Jackson said his deep passes were a focus for him this offseason. Against the Browns in Week 1, his work appeared to have paid off. But since then, he’s been just a touch off.
He hasn’t missed throws with noticeable error — with the exception of an interception late in the first half on Sunday — but he’s not connected on passes that could’ve or should’ve resulted in six points. A deep pass to Marquise Brown in the first half would’ve been six points, if it hadn’t been overthrown by a few yards.
If Jackson is able to get his deep ball in order, the Ravens will start to turn some of these two-touchdown wins into blowout games everyone saw last year.
Stock up: Ravens’ running back health/Stock down: Justice Hill
This is all combined into one, as the Ravens once again used a backfield-by-committee approach on Sunday. The team rushed 32 times and five different players earned carries — including backup quarterback Robert Griffin III.
Jackson had seven carries, Gus Edwards led the team with nine, Mark Ingram had eight and rookie J.K. Dobbins had five. It was another afternoon of keeping the backs fresh and other teams off-balance, a strategy the Ravens hope benefits them not only late in games, but late in the season as well.
The flip side of that is Hill, who didn’t see a carry or target in the afternoon in his first game being active this season.
The Ravens are having a difficult time finding touches for their three-headed monster in the backfield as is. The addition of Hill is just more problems for a backfield already loaded with talent.
Hill could find his way onto the field in the next few games, but for now, he looks to be the odd man out.