In acticipation of the New York Jets vs. Baltimore Ravens game tonight at 8pm, the Jet Press sat down with Riley Babcock of Ebony Bird, the Ravens website to ask the following questions:
JP: Do the Ravens have the easiest schedule in the NFL this season and can you see them losing any more games?
RB: I can’t say that any schedule is easy. I know it’s cliche but on any given Sunday, a team can show up and surprise you. I saw that first hand with the Titans a couple of weeks ago. There are some tough teams coming up though. The Texans will definitely give the Ravens trouble and the Chargers will be a challenge. I’m guessing a four to five loss season. There’s always the surprising games that you can’t account for.
JP: Success in the NFL these days seems to revolve around the passing game. Do you think the Ravens will continue throwing the ball like last week throughout this season?
RB: It seems like that’s the idea. The Ravens finally have a well rounded group of receivers with different talents and skill sets that create miss matches. With Ray Rice being one of the best receiving running backs in the league and the two young pass catching tight ends (Dennis Pitta, Ed Dickson) coming along, Flacco has no excuse to not do great things this season. He needs to be more consistent though. Everyone has a bad game here and there but it seems like when he’s not on, the offense comes to a screeching halt. Passing is the future but running the ball is what’s got the Ravens to the playoffs the last few years. Flacco feels more comfortable when the rushing attack is going so giving Rice his carries is a must. The line looks much better than usual and there’s no reason not to run more.
JP: Terrell Suggs at fullback? Is he pulling a refrigerator Perry?
RB: I think this is more of a one time thing. Suggs suggested it to offensive coordinator Cam Cameron and his wish was received. Suggs wants a chance to get after former teammate Bart Scott and I guess this is his way of doing it. There will probably be a “Suggs Package” with a couple of gadget plays. Maybe a screen pass or some other kind of trickery. I’d expect to see him on the field with the offense at some point but I wouldn’t start making comparisons with “The Fridge.”
JP: How would Rex Ryan have been as coach of the Ravens?
RB: I know he was pissed when he didn’t get the job as was I. It wouldn’t be much different than the Jets are now. I think he’d have a ring by now if he was the Ravens head coach. Just looking at what he did with the Jets in just a couple of years amazes me. The Ravens already had a solid foundation and I think he could have taken them to the chip. Not to say I’m not satisfied with Harbaugh, but I would have preferred Rex.
JP: Who would win in a street fight, Ray Lewis, Suggs or Bart Scott?
RB: Tough one. Suggs is a pretty scary guy and also the biggest of the three so I might have to give him the nod. It would be something I’d pay to see but It would be better to see the three fight together against someone. Tom Brady would be a worthy opponent.
JP: Prediction for the game and for the Ravens this season?
RB: I’m not a fan of predicting games given the fact you can’t account for all unknown variables but I’ll give it a shot. I think the Ravens get this one. They’re a better team than they were last year and the Jets are banged up coming in to the game. The Jets D looks vulnerable but the same can be said about the Ravens at times. I expect home field advantage to play a factor. As for the season, I like there odds this year. Pittsburgh looks weaker than normal this year and the team is built well for a playoff run. As long as injuries don’t get in the way, they should have playoff success.
JP: Joe Flacco or Mark Sanchez? Who will have the more successful career?
RB: Both Flacco and Sanchez have played almost identical thus far. Inconsistent and reliant on a good running game and solid defense. Flacco is more of the prototype QB with a big build and arm but the Sanchise is a much better leader and has the pocket presence the Flacoo has lacked at times. It looks like the ball will be put in both of their hands more this year than ever so I can’t say for sure right now. We’ll have a better understanding after this year.