At First Glance: Preseason vs Chiefs

BaltimoreRavens.com writers give their first impressions of the Ravens’ 31-13 win.

Posted by BR.com on Friday, August 19th, 2011 at 10:54 pm | Categories: 2011 Season Gameday, At First Glance, Preseason 2 vs Chiefs

John Eisenberg: It was telling that the Ravens basically abandoned the run and kept Joe Flacco on the field for the first series of the second half. Clearly, the coaches wanted to work on their new-look passing game, which shows promise but needs polishing. The best thing on display was the chemistry between Flacco and new receiver Lee Evans, who caught three passes, including one for 43 yards. But otherwise, Flacco was inaccurate at times, and few quality passing plays ensued. In his defense, he had to scramble a lot behind a makeshift offensive line that was predictably porous. The Ravens have gathered some interesting offensive pieces but still have a lot of work to do to put them together.

Mike Duffy: The Ravens showed improvement from last week’s loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, and the best part about their 31-13 win over the Kansas City Chiefs might just be how several of their new additions showed up to contribute. Joe Flacco’s 43-yard bomb to Lee Evans was a thing of beauty, as the former Buffalo Bill brought speed that the Ravens hadn’t had at the position in a while.  Rookie Pernell McPhee was a monster in the Chiefs’ backfield.  And, Sergio Kindle almost blocked two punts.  All in all, it was a night that showed what Ozzie Newsome and Co.’s wheeling and dealing could mean for the 2011 campaign.  The Ravens still must continue to work on their pass protection, but there could be some more moves in the near future, and tackling was an issue just before halftime when the second team gave up a touchdown. But, the Friday night lights brought out the best in many who have worn the purple and black the least.

Ryan Mink: At this time of the year, it’s all about getting better week-to-week. The Ravens did that. The sacks were cut way down, which was maybe the best sign after Baltimore surrendered six last week. The offense found some rhythm in the run game, and its first touchdown in the process. The pass rush was relentless all night. Quite simply, the Ravens are improving, and if this pace keeps up they’ll be in good shape when the Pittsburgh Steelers come to town on Sept. 11.

Sarah Ellison: If this is Chuck Pagano’s “vanilla” defense designed for a preseason game, it will be fun to see what he unleashes on Ben Roethlisberger in Week 1. Plus, the starters cleaned up last week’s tackling issues. There wasn’t as quick of a fix on the o-line, but it was better. The biggest improvement came from Jah Ried. Oniel Cousins looks more comfortable at guard. Michael Oher is still looking to clean up false starts. Players making a name for themselves: Cary Williams (hungry for a starting spot), Lee Evans (can we start the LEEEEEE chant please?), Vonta Leach (plays like a Mack Truck Raven) and rookie Pernell McPhee (one of the biggest surprises of camp).

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