Ravens report card versus the Browns: The defense and special teams
The Baltimore Ravens defense was much improved against the Cleveland Browns, they only allowed six points on two field goals. Here is the first report card for the game. Lets get to the grades!
Defensive line: The defensive line played great, they pressured Browns quarterback Brandon Weeden and held the Browns run game in check. They held the Browns to an average of 3.3 yards per carry and only 65 yards. They also sacked Weeden five times. Having Arthur Jones back was a big plus as he contributed with a sack. Elvis Dumervil and Terrell Suggs both had a sack. Grade A
Linebackers: Daryl Smith has been a great accquisition already and contributed with a sack and a half. Smith also led the team in tackles with 11 and played pass coverage well. Josh Bynes also played well, he was very quick to the ball carrier and seemed to be in on every play. Bynes is a guy that worked his way up from the practice squad and is now a started, he has not seemed lost at all. Grade A
Secondary: This unit was MUCH improved this week around. Lets face it Weeden is no Peyton Manning but even Weeden got out of the game with a 83.8 passer rating. Jimmy Smith played much better and was probably the most improved Ravens player. Matt Elam played great in his first career start. The secondary left some guys wide open but the more this unit plays together the less it will happen. Grade B
Special Teams: Justin Tucker missed two field goals, not good at all. Tandon Doss had some good returns and Sam Koch was solid again. The team covered punts and kicks well. Grade C
Coaching staff: The entire coaching staff did fine and made some good adjustments in game to pull out this victory. It is not easy to win a game when they here their starting quarterback had a baby hours before. Divisional game win. Grade B