As Thanksgiving week in the NFL deserves, we get an enticing matchup between two premier teams this Monday night in LA. The Baltimore Lamar Jacksons, i mean Ravens, will take on the Los Angeles Rams in a game that’s likely to tell us far more about the Rams than the Ravens.
Having looked like an elite team from the jump, the Baltimore Ravens have taken a huge leap in Lamar Jackson’s second year at the helm. Often times struggling as a passer in his rookie campaign, Jackson has bumped his completion percentage to 66% and possesses a 19-5 touchdown to interception ratio, aiding in the explosion of this new offense. Though Lamar is obviously the engine that drives this team, we can’t be dismissive of their defense and running game. Baltimore Ranks 6th in the league in points allowed per game at 19.6, and 7th in overall run defense at 94.3 yards allowed per game. Their lone defensive deficiency is on the backend, where they rank 19th in opponents passing yards allowed. Ultimately they’re good where it counts which is on the score board, and when you combine that with the #1 scoring offense in the league led by LJ, you’re doing alright. Regardless of whether the Ravens win this game or not, they’re sure to win their division and maybe a first round bye.
The Rams on the other hand, have had various questions surround them throughout the season. Is Todd Gurley even healthy? Does he already have Arthritis? Is Jared Goff really worth that contract? TG3 has been up and down this season, as has Goff, considering several hapless games stat wise where he failed to his 200 yards, and has yet to manage 3 passing touchdowns in a game this season. He owns a TD-Int ratio of only 11-10, and the Rams are in danger of owning a 6-5 record. The offense is sputtering in comparison to what we said about this team last year, averaging 24 points per paralleled with their 30 per contest last season. They currently sit at 20th in rushing yards per game, and a surprising 8th in passing yards per due to Jared Goff’s couple high yardage games. Undoubtedly the struggles can be understood and linked to various injury concerns with both Gurley, Cook, and others on this offense, but when we piled as much praise as we have on Sean McVay, one can’t help but wonder what’s going on even still.
All of this in mind, we’re now asking if Sean McVay is all that as opposed to asking if John Harbaugh is on the hot seat like we were a couple years ago. I don’t believe anyone is or should be calling for Sean’s job, nowhere near it, but it just serves as a reminder for how quickly change happens in the NFL and just how hard it is to stay on top. The Ravens are the new limelight team, and it’s their turn to surf this trend to a potential playoff run. Their status and respect is not dependent upon this game as much as the Rams is, and this will undoubtedly be shown tonight.