BALTIMORE – The recently jump-started Baltimore offense hits the field to see if they can find consistency for the second straight week when they take on the Chicago Bears (1-4) this Sunday. The Ravens (3-2) look to be without DT Brandon Williams again and, although they are at a semi-respectable 3-2 record, they could very well be .500 by 4:30 on Sunday.
The Bears have a very solid running game with stud running back Jordan Howard and jitterbug Tarik Cohen. This season, Howard and Cohen combine for 118 touches and 522 yards (4.4 YPC) on the ground with four touchdowns. Howard has seen an increase in action over the last few weeks while Cohen seems to be an afterthought in the Bears offense. With rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky under center, both running backs will see plenty of carries to start the contest at M&T Bank Stadium.
The Ravens came alive last week on the first play of the game against Oakland when Joe Flacco uncorked a beautiful rainbow throw to Mike Wallace for the longest offensive play of the year thus far for Baltimore. Wallace continued to add big plays to the game script with another 50+ YD catch later in the game to set up a Buck Allen TD run. There was a Breshad Perriman sighting as well, as he finally managed to catch a ball. Jeremy Maclin excelled as the main possession receiver, consistently bailing out Flacco in pressure situations. Even in the play where Flacco danced around the pocket, fell, and delivered a floater, Maclin was right there and made the play.
The Ravens offensive line played consistently and stand-ins Matt Skura and Jermaine Eluemenor were very serviceable. According to Pro Football Focus, center Ryan Jensen had the highest rating of any NFL center during week 5. The Ravens only committed one penalty against the Raiders, an amazing feat considering they haven’t had that few of penalties since the winter of 2011. John Harbaugh was visibly pleased at the line’s performance.
WHAT TO LOOK OUT FOR:
- Bears RBs: Howard and Cohen, if not held in check, have the ability to trample the Williams-less Ravens defensive unit. In week 4, Le’veon Bell had over 150 all-purpose yards and we could very well see more of the same against this front.
- Ravens WRs: With the unit seemingly catching fire at the most opportune time, the Bears shaky secondary could fall victim to the pure speed that is possessed by Baltimore. Calvert Hall Alum Adrian Amos is the best player in the secondary for this young Bears squad. Wallace will look to continue his ridiculous production after setting the record for yards-per-catch in a game by a Raven, previously held by Qadry Ismail. Perriman looks to become more of a factor and shake the premature title of bust.
- Bears Defense: Surprisingly, this unit is sixth in the league in total defense, which doesn’t bode particularly well for the offensively-challenged Baltimore Ravens.
- Trubisky: After a mixed bag start for the rookie, Trubisky looks to yet again step into the crucible and take on one of the toughest defenses in the NFL. He could have a very good game if the offensive line holds up, but chances are he will struggle mightily, as Baltimore’s secondary is far more talented than Minnesota’s.
Who: Baltimore Ravens vs. Chicago Bears
What: Week 6 NFL regular season
When: 1:00 p.m.. ET, Sunday, Oct. 15, 2017
Where: M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, Maryland
TV Channel: FOX
Point Spread: Baltimore, -6.5
Weather: 84 degrees, partly cloudy
Image Credit: NFL