The Ravens are going off the rails, it’s a downward spiral that feels faster with this loss to the Cleveland Browns. The way that we are playing, I’m sure the 49ers, Cardinals and Chargers are notching their upcoming games against us as a probable WIN. It’s not just about playing competitively for 60 minutes and leaving it all out on the field. Our offensive schematics are predictable, our defense uninspired and Justin Tucker has a better scoring percentage for away games. The way that we are playing, our opponents are coming out of games with stats that look like the New England Patriots or Green Bay Packers. Our opposing quarterbacks are having stellar, career performances and teams are breaking their own offensive yardage records.
During the first quarter of home games, an announcement is read to the stadium. Most people only remember “Don’t be a jerk” but before that phrase, the credo states that we “should expect the players … best effort”. Instead we’re getting the best effort from the opponent since they have all taken 2nd half leads from us. The Ravens are usually contenders. Even when they weren’t playoff bound other teams still respected and feared playing Baltimore. More importantly, they feared our defense which usually kept scores low and even if the other team won that battle, our opponent often came out bruised and battered. .
We’ve been fortunate that in recent memory we have not had a losing football team. Sometimes we write off the Orioles and blame Angelos while waiting for football season to start. But as a whole I’ve never felt this way about the Ravens, every week was a test and a testament to the team. The Ravens always had a fire starter in the locker room who kept everyone motivated beyond their paycheck. The Ravens always had a leader who lead by example and with enthusiasm. We don’t have that now and on the outside looking in, it appears being a professional NFL player isn’t enough to keep the entire team inspired.