Ravens Overcome Red Zone Issues

Baltimore scored three touchdowns in three chances in the red zone vs. Atlanta.

Posted by Ryan Mink on Sunday, November 14th, 2010 at 12:49 pm | Categories: Ryan Mink

The Ravens can check one issue off their list of fixes after Sunday’s loss to the Falcons.

What was a big topic of conversation heading into the game – the Ravens’ red zone production – was a strength in the Georgia Dome.

The Ravens scored touchdowns on all three of their red zone trips.

They did so by showing improvement in key areas that hurt them last Sunday against the Dolphins when they scored one touchdown in seven trips, which dropped them to 23rd in the NFL in red-zone efficiency.

On Baltimore’s first chance, fullback Le’Ron McClain’s second-effort gained two yards on third-and-1. Then, quarterback Joe Flacco hit wide receiver Anquan Boldin with a perfectly lofted pass on the next play for a 5-yard touchdown. The Ravens needed just three plays in the red zone to score.

Baltimore used just three more plays on their next chance. They got good blocking this time, as Ray Rice ran for six yards from the 17-yard line and Willis McGahee followed that up with a 5-yard rumble. The offensive line protected Flacco well, giving him time to find Derrick Mason for a 6-yard touchdown pass.

On the Ravens’ final trip, a well-executed and timely screen play sprung Rice for a 24-yard gain that got him down to the 11-yard line. Rice ran up the middle for two yards and Flacco found Heap open over the middle for the 9-yard touchdown that put Baltimore on top following the extra point.

The Ravens didn’t have any penalties in the red zone, they didn’t take a sack, they ran the ball forward with good push and converted in short-yardage situations. Check, check, check and check.

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