Matchups To Watch

Ravens Weekend

November 09, 2007|By MIKE PRESTON

TODD HEAP RAVENS TE HT: 6-5 WT: 252 YEAR: 7

MADIEU WILLIAMS BENGALS S HT: 6-1 WT: 203 YEAR: 4

Despite missing three of the past four games with a strained hamstring, Heap could put up big numbers against the Bengals. Cincinnati has had problems covering tight ends, and Heap is still one of the best ones in the NFL. This was supposed to be a big year for Williams, in his fourth season out of Maryland. The Bengals were expected to turn him loose, but Williams has been a disappointment despite being third on the team in tackles with 50. If Heap is looking to get back in a groove, he should be able to do so against the Bengals.

EDGE: HEAP

MIKE FLYNN RAVENS C HT: 6-3 WT: 305 YEAR: 10

LANDON JOHNSON BENGALS LB HT: 6-2 WT: 232 YEAR: 4

Johnson usually plays on the weak side, but he should start in the middle because injuries have depleted the Bengals' linebacking corps. Johnson had a great season in the weight room and the bulk will come in handy playing in the middle. He is mature, hard-working, quiet and a good tackler. Flynn usually turns in a solid job. When he struggles, it is always against bigger tackles and nose guards. Flynn still has quick feet and should be able to get to Johnson on most running plays.

EDGE: FLYNN

COREY IVY RAVENS CB HT: 5-9 WT: 188 YEAR: 7

T.J. HOUSHMANDZADEH BENGALS WR HT: 6-1 WT: 199 YEAR: 7

Houshmandzadeh is a tough guy. He is a student of the game and has strong hands. He has the ability to find holes in zone defenses, is fearless over the middle and is the Bengals' most consistent receiver. Ivy will be a replacement starter again. He has good athleticism but is better as a nickel back or safety than a starting cornerback. Ivy tackles well but the Ravens will have to give him help over the top in pass defense.

EDGE: HOUSHMANDZADEH

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