Ravens-Lions: Mike Preston's report card

Baltimore Sun columnist grades the team on its 48-3 win over Detroit

December 13, 2009

Quarterback: A-
Despite the weather, Joe Flacco threw the ball reasonably well and went downfield a couple of times where he showed good touch. He went through his progressions more than the past couple of games, but is still too quick at times to check down.

Offensive line: A
Left tackle Michael Oher and left guard Ben Grubbs dominated, and right guard Marshal Yanda did a nice job of pulling and sealing the corner. Right tackle Oniel Cousins was solid in his first start. The Ravens need to improve pass protection.

Running backs: A
If he had played the entire game, running back Ray Rice could have rushed for more than 300 yards. Fullback Le'Ron McClain had some nice lead blocks for Rice, and Willis McGahee played well in relief of Rice.

Receivers: B
Derrick Mason's catch and run after being sandwiched was exceptional, and the Lions had no one who could cover Mason or the Ravens' receivers. It would be nice if this group made some big plays against top notch defenses.

Defensive line: C+
The Ravens were solid, but they'll have to play better against better competition. Detroit slashed the Ravens up the middle for more than 100 yards rushing, especially on cutback runs. The Ravens got very little pass rushing pressure from their line.

Linebackers: B
The Ravens overran running plays several times, but when they didn't, they manhandled the Lions. Antwan Barnes was the only Raven to get much of a pass rush. Terrell Suggs wasn't a factor in his first game back from injury.

Secondary: B+
If the Lions had a better passing game, they could have challenged the Ravens downfield more. But overall, the Ravens did a nice job of bracketing Calvin Johnson with a corner and a safety. The secondary was aggressive coming up in run support.

Special teams: B
Kickoff returner Lardarius Webb and punt returner Chris Carr gave the Ravens good field position with several returns. The Ravens' coverage units were solid even though Detroit had some open lanes on kickoff returns, but failed to find them.

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