The Baltimore Ravens needed a quick turnaround after an inexcusable loss to the Cleveland Browns last week. The loss to the Browns was not only embarrassing, but it put the Ravens in a difficult situation. If the Ravens were to lose to the Titans the following week, Baltimore would fall from an outstanding 3-1 record to a simply average 3-3. To avoid such a disaster, the Ravens felt the palpable need for a statement game against the Tennessee Titans. Baltimore delivered on the need, and the statement made was one heard throughout the National Football League. Through the sheer domination of the Titans, the Ravens solidified themselves among the AFC’s best.
The Baltimore Ravens entered Tennessee, where most experts and analysts expected the team to find a fierce matchup with the Titans. On paper, the Titans should not have gone down easy. Tennessee’s defense was one of the best throughout the first five weeks of the season. Tennessee’s offense, while inconsistent, has talent, and should have been able to at least score something. Instead of delivering on these expectations, the Titans completely collapsed. The Baltimore Ravens defense not only held Tennessee to zero points, but also sacked quarterback Marcus Mariota eleven times. Not only is that a franchise record, it is also just one short of the all time NFL record for most team sacks per game (12). Marcus Mariota was held to just ten pass completions, for 117 yards. The Titans found no success in the running game either. Derrick Henry rushed for just 21 yards on the day. Mariota led the team in rushing, with 25 yards.
The Ravens offense, while not as dominant as the defense, still ran circles around Tennessee. Baltimore scored three touchdowns, two of which came on back to back drives to start the game. The first Ravens offensive drive traversed 89 yards over 17 plays, and shaved 9 minutes and 9 seconds off of the clock. The second touchdown drive was much quicker. It only took the team seven plays and 2:53 to travel 52 yards for the score. The third and final touchdown drive came in the third quarter. The Ravens again embarked on a long, time consuming drive. The drive lasted twelve plays, 7:02, and covered 93 yards. By killing the clock and scoring, the Ravens were able to compliment a defense that was preventing any Titans offensive movement.
The Baltimore Ravens dominated the Tennessee Titans on Sunday. The win not only raised the Ravens’ record to 4-2, but also served as a statement. The Baltimore Ravens proved that they are among the AFCs best teams. They not only beat, but destroyed another playoff contending AFC team. The combination of a strong offense with an unstoppable defense. As it stands, the Ravens are competitors. The team is on the verge of greatness, and can solidify themselves as among the NFL’s best with a victory over the New Orleans Saints this Sunday.