The Baltimore Ravens are experiencing a continued tumble entirely out of the playoff picture. The Ravens have not looked like the dominant team they were last season due to their offensive shortcomings. Baltimore may have just received the spark plug they needed ahead of Week 13 action against the Dallas Cowboys.
The Ravens are quickly stumbling south
The Ravens entered the 2020 campaign hoping to build off their tremendous success from last season and push past their early playoff exit.
Baltimore guided their way to one of the top marks in the league with a 6-2 record through the first eight games. However, things have fallen off the track a bit in the last few weeks after suffering three straight losses.
Lamar Jackson’s play has taken a significant dip, with opposing defenses figuring out how to better game plan against him. His passing game struggles have become a more substantial issue, as he ranks 26th in completion rate (63.4%), 24th in passing yards (1,948), 21st in yards per attempt (7.1), and 20th in touchdown passes (15).
The Ravens have maintained their effectiveness running the ball, ranking second with 157.6 yards per game. The problems lie with their inability to effectively move the ball down the field through the air and overcome deficits. Despite their recent struggles, Baltimore just got a much-needed boost before their Week 13.
Lamar Jackson cleared off the reserve/COVID-19 list
The Ravens moved through Week 12 action without star quarterback Lamar Jackson due to testing positive with COVID-19 on Thanksgiving.
Baltimore saw their backfield with running backs Mark Ingram and JK Dobbins each deal with the virus. However, the Ravens received some encouraging news with Jackson getting activated from the reserve/COVID-19 list on Monday afternoon.
The reigning league MVP has been out of the mix for over the last week. His clearance from the list comes immediately after he completed the 10-day quarantine. Jackson’s return to the team should give him enough time to prepare for Wednesday’s Week 13 game against the Cowboys.
His presence provides the Ravens with a significant boost as they struggled to produce with Robert Griffin III and Trace McSorley under center. Griffin III was placed on the injured reserve on Friday after he suffered a hamstring injury against the Steelers.
Jackson should give them a much-needed boost to push them back on track against a struggling Cowboys team.
Opportunity to get back on track against the Cowboys
The 2020 season has unfolded in the manner that the Ravens hoped after a dominant campaign last year.
The three consecutive losses have pushed them to fight for a wildcard spot with five games left to play. Baltimore has a prime opportunity to get back on track against a struggling team. Injuries and inconsistency have battered the Cowboys throughout the season.
Ravens may have the recipe for success against Dallas, ranked last in the league against the run allowing 156.4 rushing yards per contest. The Cowboys are coming off giving up 182 rushing yards and three touchdowns to the Washington Football Team, with rookie Antonio Gibson tallying up 115 yards and all three touchdowns.
Baltimore’s bed and butter have been their running game, which should be no different on Wednesday night. These factors set the table for a heavy dosage of Lamar Jackson running the ball and setting up the play-action passes.
The combination of Ingram and Dobbins will play a significant part in helping their offense set the tone with the running game. The outlook on the game has every reason to lean heavily toward the Ravens getting back on track.