Preview: Ravens Look to Make it Four Straight as They Welcome in Indianapolis on Monday Night Football
The Baltimore Ravens have their third primetime game in five weeks as they take on the visiting Indianapolis Professional Football team on Monday night. It will be a historic night as Ravens legend Haloti Ngata will be inducted into the Ravens Ring of Honor at Halftime of Monday nights game. The Ravens also sit tied with the 1974-1977 Pittsburgh Steelers for consecutive 100-yard rushing games at 43, will look to break the record on Monday night against an Indianapolis defense that currently ranks 15th in the NFL in rush defense.
Most importantly the Ravens have the opportunity to take sole possession of first place atop the AFC North standings. As both the Bengals and Browns lost on Sunday afternoon.
Ravens Getting Healthy
While the likes of Marcus Peters, J.K Dobbins, and Gus Edwards won’t be running out of the tunnel this season for the Ravens. The Ravens injury report this week has been the smallest it has been in weeks. Tackle Ronnie Stanley is still on injured reserve as he continues to deal with an ankle injury.
Both Ravens safeties, Geno Stone and DeShon Elliott practiced this week and are both listed as questionable.
While tackle Alejandro Villanueva who left last Sunday’s game with a knee injury also practiced this week and listed as questionable. If Villanueva cannot play backup Andre Smith will get the start. Smith filled in for Villanueva after he went down against the Broncos.
Recievers Rashod Batemon and Miles Boykin have continued to practice all week as they work back from injuries. Their status for Monday night remain unclear as they have not yet been activated to the 53-man roster. The Ravens have until 4 P.M Monday to activate either player for them to be made available to play Monday night.
Ravens Offense Fast Start
The Ravens offense hasn’t had the electric start to the season that has been so accustomed the last two seasons. The slow start can largely be contributed to how the Ravens have started games this season. The past two weeks the Ravens did not score in the first quarter, and the Ravens have yet to score on their opening drive through their first four games. The revolving door that has been the running back position has yet to assert their presence early in games as no true number one back has stepped up for the Ravens.
Ravens offensive coordinator Greg Roman however will likely look to run early as Indianapolis gives up an average of 4.2 yards per carry. An opening drive touchdown by Lamar Jackson and this Ravens offense has the ability to be backbreaking for Indianapolis who come into Baltimore with some momentum after a win last Sunday. Indianapolis will be without their first-round pick, defensive end Kwity Paye. As well as cornerback Rock Ya-Sin.
The Ravens will look to come out early and set the tone behind the energy of the home crowd. Indianapolis is a team that had high playoff hopes who dropped their first three contests. Before finally picking up their first win last week against the Miami Dolphins. Indianapolis is a team desperate to keep their season afloat, and a quick start by the Ravens could take the wind of an Indianapolis team looking to turn their season around.
I see the Ravens being able to move the ball at will on offense forcing Indianapolis quarterback Carson Wentz to keep up. Wentz will look to take advantage of a Ravens secondary that ranks 25th in pass defense. But the lack of weapons for the Indianapolis offense will become evident very quickly as they fail to matchup across the board with this Ravens defense. The lack of mobility by Wentz will also be an issue. With Indianapolis placing All-Pro Guard Quenton Nelson on injured reserve this week, I expect the Ravens pass rushers to frequent the Indianapolis backfield forcing Wentz into errant passes and poor reads. It should be an early Monday night for the Indy faithful, Ravens win 34-13.
Line: Ravens -7
All-Time Record: Indianapolis leads series 10-6
Last Meeting: 11/08/2020 Ravens 24-10