3 things

Ravens Weekend

October 24, 2008|By Jamison Hensley

THREE THINGS THAT NEED TO GO RIGHT ...

1

Keep feeding the ball to Willis McGahee. Oakland has allowed two 100-yard rushers in the past three games, including 159 yards on Sunday to the New York Jets' Thomas Jones. McGahee, who runs similarly to Jones, is coming off his first 100-yard game of the season.

2

Force JaMarcus Russell into bad decisions. The Raiders' young quarterback has been very careful with the ball, throwing two interceptions in six games. But the Ravens rely heavily on turnovers (two defensive touchdowns in three wins).

3

Win the field-position battle. Both punters - the Ravens' Sam Koch and the Raiders' Shane Lechler - rank in the NFL's top four in net punt average.

... AND THREE THINGS THAT COULD GO WRONG

1

Russell takes advantage of a banged-up secondary. With perhaps three starters out in their secondary, the Ravens could be susceptible to Russell's cannon arm. He has touchdown passes of 84 and 63 yards this season.

2

Joe Flacco can't hold on to the ball. The Ravens' rookie quarterback knows the Raiders will continue their blitz-heavy game plan. When he gets hit, Flacco has had a habit of fumbling (six fumbles in six games).

3

The Raiders shut down Derrick Mason. There's going to come a time when defenses decide to double-team Mason. That could be trouble because no other receiver has more than 13 catches or a yards-per-catch average of more than 11 yards.

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