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Baltimore Ravens Three Big Questions Versus the Browns

Last weekend, the Ravens missed a golden opportunity to extend their division lead. A failed two-point conversion was ultimately their undoing. Now, they travel to Cleveland with the Browns coming off a bye week. Here are three big questions facing Baltimore today.

Can they contain Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt again?

When the Browns traveled to Baltimore two weeks ago, the Ravens were dominate in their run defense. Brandon Williams helped clog up the middle, and Justin Houston and Odafe Oweh set great edges. The Browns managed a total of 40 rushing yards that day, a season low.

As the weather turns colder, the importance of the run game increases. Cleveland will surely be looking to get back on track today. With a banged up secondary, containing the run game becomes even more crucial for Baltimore.

It will be challenging to limit the Browns the way the Ravens were able to in Baltimore. It almost feels like a fluke that they were so completely suffocating. However, holding Cleveland to under 100 yards rushing would be a huge achievement for a short handed defense.

Who will step up now that Marlon Humphrey is out?

Last week’s loss became even more depressing with the news that Marlon Humphrey suffered a season-ending pectoral injury. Although he struggled early in the year, Humphrey had really turned things around in recent weeks. Now, the Ravens are tasked with replacing him. Mind you, they have already been without number two corner Marcus Peters all season.

By default, Anthony Averett is now Baltimore’s top corner. If he is healthy, Chris Westry is the de facto number two. Jimmy Smith’s role also increased last week and will likely continue to do so. The biggest problem is that none of these guys are fully healthy.

Against  Pittsburgh, slot corner Tavon Young managed just eight snaps coming off an illness. For the secondary to have any hope of overcoming the loss of Humphrey, Young will have to find a way to stay on the field. He appears recovered from the illness, but only time will tell.

Aside from those guys, Baltimore also has Kevon Seymour. Seymour has mostly been on Baltimore’s practice squad, but he will be forced into action now. It would be unreasonable to expect Seymour to provide anything other than depth, but given all the injuries in the secondary, the importance of depth cannot be overstated.

Can Lamar Jackson get out of his slump?

When the Ravens were winning close games earlier this season, it was because Lamar Jackson put the team on his back. However, over the last month, Jackson has been in a slump. Ever since the Thursday night game in Miami, Jackson has not been himself.

The Dolphins threw a heavy blitz at Jackson, and the Ravens were unable to adjust. In each matchup since then, teams have applied the same strategy. Baltimore has yet to adjust.

Each week, reporters ask Head Coach John Harbaugh and Offensive Coordinator Greg Roman what the solution is to their recent drought. Roman swears he has a vault of plays to call upon, but it seems he has not employed it. With a depleted offensive line and a slumping quarterback, something has to change.

Replays seem to show that Jackson has open receivers, but he is not finding them. Whether it is a result of quick pressure or indecisiveness, Jackson is also taking far too many sacks. It is only a matter of time before he gets injured the way he is playing.

Jackson has an excellent record against the Cleveland Browns. His familiarity with them could allow him to break out of this slump today. The time is now for the offense to get back on track. With a banged up defense, the Ravens will need to score a lot of points to keep pace and try to make the playoffs.





Ashley is a sports fanatic to the core. Her grandmother introduced her to football as a little girl, and she's been hooked ever since. Fueled by massive amounts of caffeine and a passion for writing, Ashley showcases her fiery views on teams, players, and match-ups. Whether it's fantasy football advice or in-depth game analysis, Ashley has you covered like a lockdown cornerback.

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