By Jon Heath
When you are penalized nine times, allow 200 rushing yards, and your offensive line allows three defensive players in the backfield every play, your chances of winning are low. On Sunday the Broncos did all three and fell to the Ravens for the second straight season, by a score of 31-17.
After holding the Ravens on their first drive to a turnover on downs, the Broncos offense set up at their own 15-yard line. On the fourth play of the drive, Eddie Royal took an end-around 33-yards for a big first down. The play, however, was called back for a holding penalty, setting the tone for the rest of the game.
The Broncos offense proceeded to self-destruct, halting numerous drives with offsides and holding penalties. One bright spot on the afternoon was Brandon Lloyd; Lloyd caught five passes for 135 yards and two scores. It was all for nothing though, as the offensive line couldn't give Orton enough time to find any consistency and wasn't able to create a running game.
While the offense struggled, the defense followed suit and allowed over 400 yards of total offense and 31 points. The defensive pass rush was most alarming, reaching Flacco only once and proved incapable of stopping the run.
It was a rough day for the Broncos all around, the team will fly back to Denver to face the Jets at home next week. Humbled by today's loss, hopefully the team will put up a better performance in front of a home crowd next week.
By Jon Heath