Position Edge

November 03, 2003|By Jamison Hensley

Ravens rushing vs. Jaguars run defense

JAGUARS - - The Ravens created little space for Jamal Lewis and the league's leading rusher was held to a season-low 68 yards rushing. The biggest play came from Chester Taylor, who filled in for an injured Lewis and ran for a 29-yard touchdown. But the most troubling aspect is how the running game fared in the red zone, where the Ravens aver-aged 2.4 yards on seven rushes. The Ravens finished with 103 yards on the ground, 78 yards below their season average.

Ravens passing vs. Jaguars pass defense

EVEN - - It was feast or famine for Kyle Boiler. The rookie quarterback had four passes for 117 yards while his other six completions went for 39 yards. He finished 10-for-23 (43 percent) against a Jacksonville pass defense that had allowed quarterbacks to complete 62 percent of their throws. The critical mistake was another fumble -- Boller's eighth of the season -- which was returned 15 yards for Jacksonville's first touchdown.

Janitors rushing vs. Ravens run defense

JAGUARS - - The Ravens surrendered a season-worst 134 yards, which all came in the first three quarters. The total could have been worse if the Jaguars didn't need to go into passing mode to play catch-up. The problem was the Ravens' inability to control the line of scrimmage and make tackles. Three different Jacksonville running backs -- Fred Taylor, LaBrandon Toefield and Chris Fuamatu-Ma'afala -- each had runs of at least 15 yards.

Jaguars passing vs. Ravens pass defense

RAVENS - - The pressure applied by the Ravens' pass rush forced two fumbles and paved the way for 10 points in the fourth quarter. Playing prevent defense kept the Ravens' pass defense from having a stelIar game. In the first three quarters, the Ravens limited Byron Leftwich to 80 yards passing. In the final quarter, a more passive zone gave up 128 yards. Will Demps deflected Leftwich's final pass, which was intercepted by Ray Lewis to seal the win.

Special teams

RAVENS - - The Ravens won the field-position battle because of returner Lamont Brightful and their coverage teams. Excluding turnovers, the Ravens started at their own 40-yard line or better seven times while the Jaguars began at their own 22 or worse eight times. After Jacksonville tied the game on a fumble return, Brightful returned the ensuing kickoff a season-best 58 yards to swing back the momentum. He also ran back the opening kick-off 31 yards to place the Ravens near midfield. The coverage teams stifled the Jaguars to 2.5 yards on punt returns and 18.8 yards on kickoff returns.

NICKEL PACKAGE

Thumbs up

Pass rush. Tony Weaver and Peter Boulware forced fourth-quarter fumbles from rookie quarterback Byron Leftwich deep in Jaguars' territory, where the Ravens converted 10 points. The Ravens tied a season high with four sacks.

Thumbs down

Offensive play-calling. With 2 1/2 minutes remaining in the game, Ravens rookie quarterback Kyle Boller threw a deep pass to tight end Todd Heap that fell incomplete and stopped the clock. If the Ravens had run the ball, they could have wound off a significant chunk of additional time. It was the most bizarre call of the season. Stat of the game

Stat of the game

71. Yards the Jaguars held Jamal Lewis below his 139-yard per-game average.

Quotable

"We didn't play really good offensively or defensively. [But] when you come out with a win in a game like that, you have to be happy. Now it's time to hit the second half of the season and get it running." -- Heap on the Ravens' 24-17 win over the one-win Jaguars.

Trainer's room

Backup safety Chad Williams, who plays in the team's dime package, strained his lower back, starting nose tackle Kelly Gregg received stitches in his lip and reserve tight end John Jones suffered a neck injury. ... Starting cornerback Corey Fuller (groin and hamstring) was inactive for the first time this season. He is expected to return at St. Louis.

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