Breaking Down the Baltimore Ravens' Week 2 Game Tape

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Breaking Down the Baltimore Ravens' Week 2 Game Tape
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The Ravens lost to the Eagles by one point on the road. Philadelphia is the most athletic team Baltimore will face all year and the Ravens were either winning or tied from 2:08 in the first quarter until 1:55 in the fourth quarter.

That's the good news.

The bad news?

The Eagles out-gained the Ravens in total yardage, 486-325. Philly was 8-for-16 on third and fourth down conversion attempts, while Baltimore was only 4-for-16.

For the second straight week, the Ravens gave up 129 yards rushing to their opponent. Before 2012, the Ravens have only given up that much rushing yardage to an opponent twice in 12 games.

The catch is that the running defense wasn't the problem.

Michael Vick threw for 357 yards passing (32 more yards than the Ravens gained in the entire game). Baltimore cornerbacks were routinely giving Philadelphia receivers cushions of 10-plus yards. Three of Vick's first four completions were for at least 16 yards (all to different receivers).

Baltimore's secondary did intercept Vick twice (rather, their safeties intercepted Vick twice), but they seemed to be on skates the entire afternoon.

The Ravens' front seven didn't do a bad job, as they made LeSean McCoy (named the First Team All-Pro running back in 2011) earn each one of his 81 rushing yards and forced him to fumble as well.

They shot gaps and played the edges well, forcing McCoy to make a play instead of simply giving him a running lane. Nine of McCoy's 25 carries resulted in no gain or negative yardage. Only six of those 25 carries resulted in runs of six yards or more.

Offensively, the Ravens were clicking in the first half, save for some poor pass protection.

Rich Schultz/Getty Images

Most notably, on Baltimore's second play from scrimmage, Michael Oher stopped his feet while Trent Cole raced past him to register the strip sack of Joe Flacco. Ramon Harewood got driven back six yards into Flacco as well.

As far as special teams go, Baltimore had a great day. Deonte Thompson returned three kicks for a total of 100 yards. He has the second best kick return average in the league among players who've returned at least six kicks.

Justin Tucker was 3-for-3, including two field goals from 50-plus yards. Sam Koch averaged 50.2 yards on his five punts. All coverage teams did really well, holding the Eagles to an average of 17 less yards per kick return and eight less yards per punt return than the Ravens had.

The Eagles had more penalties (7-6) for more yards (58-45) and more turnovers (4-2) than the Ravens, but still won the game. That hardly ever happens.

The challenge for the Ravens now is to absorb any reputable criticism and use it as fuel for their Week 3 showdown against the Patriots this Sunday night.

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