Quick Hits: Ravens exposed by Chargers, 34-14

The Ravens had control of the AFC in their fingertips and on Sunday night against the Chargers they proved that they aren’t as strong as everyone had previously thought. Going into the game Baltimore was being touted as one of the best teams in the league and one that was destined for a home playoff game.  Monday morning they are a team that has played well at home and will likely be playing their postseason games on the road.

Poor coaching, a failure to adjust whatever game plan they set up and an abysmal night by Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco killed the Ravens chances in San Diego.  In front of a national audience, the Ravens lost their second worst game under John Harbaugh since falling by 28 to the Colts in 2008.

Here are my thoughts on the ugly 34-14 loss in San Diego.

  • Who is Joe Flacco? - I don’t know who Baltimore’s quarterback is? Is he the guy that threads the needle to Ed Dickson between two defenders in the end zone or the guy that overthrows Ray Rice on a two yard dump off pass? Is he the guy that breaks a sack and rushes for 12 yards to convert on third down or the guy that under threw Lee Evans in the first quarter on a pass that would have been a touchdown on the team’s opening drive. I’m not sure which Joe Flacco is the real Joe Flacco, but I know that on the road he hasn’t been good.
  • Suggs was a non-factor - For a guy that we’ve all been praising and hoping to see win the defensive player of the year award, Terrell Suggs fell flat against the Chargers.  After a couple three sack performances, Suggs was limited to just two tackles.  Former Raven Jared Gaither was pushing him around.  Suggs most memorable moment was a personal foul head slap penalty that gave the Chargers three points.
  • Poor coaching effort - I’ve never seen John Harbaugh shown less on TV than I did in this game and every shot of him on the sideline seemed to show him baffled and confused.  Harbaugh had that same look that Eli Manning had against the Redskins this week.  I don’t know what the Ravens game plan going into this game was, but they never adjusted.  On offense, Joe Flacco continued to make mistakes and team never adjusted to them and on defense they never made up for the gaping holes that Jimmy Smith left open in the secondary.  Matt Lund is the professor, but if I gave out a grade for Harbaugh and the coaching staff it would be an “F” and only because I can’t give out anything lower.  At the end of the first half, the Ravens had a chance to use timeouts after the two minute warning to get the ball back and attempt to make a drive, they didn’t and Norv Turner looked like the games best coach for those 120 seconds.
  • Can’t rely on Jimmy Smith - I’ve never seen a team pick on one of the Ravens corners like I saw Philip Rivers pick on Jimmy Smith last night.  The back of Smith’s jersey was all I kept seeing.  Malcom Floyd put him to work and finished the game just shy of 100 yards receiving.  The Ravens had no answers.
  • Bad road team - The Ravens controlled their fate and had a home playoff game in sight, now they must rely on the teams facing the Patriots and Steelers.  In two west coast trips the Ravens have been outscored 17-0.  Outside M&T Bank Stadium they look like a completely different team.

Say what you will about the success of John Harbaugh and the Ravens, but as it stands Brian Billick is still the most successful head coach in Baltimore football history.  After last night I have to question this staff’s ability to adjust to their weaknesses and their ability to play outside Baltimore.

Zach Wilt is the Founding Editor of BaltimoreSportsReport.com and host of the BSR Podcast. He's a loyal Orioles, Ravens and Capitals fan who is obsessed with baseball, loves traveling, In-N-Out Burger and Walt Disney World.

13 Comments

  1. The Intimidator (Psychopath)

    December 19, 2011 at 7:35 am

    Uh Oh… Suggs jumped in Harbaughs face last night on national television…

    Is what I have been saying about the veterans not liking Harbaugh actually making a front and center appearance?

    Harbaugh looks clueless every game, not just last night…

  2. Jonathan

    December 19, 2011 at 8:40 am

    Watching Rivers drop bombs on us, seemingly at will, was hard to watch. Flacco’s response was absolutely maddening. He had plenty of time on a few of those dumpoffs. Have to make something happen.

  3. John

    December 19, 2011 at 10:53 am

    Exposed is accurate. The Chargers just laid down a template for other teams to follow. Expect the Ravens to have a quick exit from the playoffs as they are woeful on the road.

  4. MGW

    December 19, 2011 at 2:20 pm

    When, when, will you guys see that the majority of this coaching staff is in WAAAAAY over their heads?

    Stop talking about “making it to the playoffs”. They will win a game against the low life West, but that’s it.

    I’m sure Marty Schottenheimer was proud of all the times he “made the playoffs”. Where does he coach now?!?!

  5. Jim

    December 19, 2011 at 3:55 pm

    Did you see thuggs I mean suggs hit rivers, he did not want to tackel him he wanted to hurt him. ray Ray runnin around like the old man he is Thats there mentality when you lose get violent cry baby crimmials ravens are losers

    Steelers all the way go ahead you can say it

    Steelers

  6. The Intimidator

    December 19, 2011 at 4:42 pm

    @Jim – Even though I’m pissed the Ravens lost you have to remember they beat the shit out of the Squeelers twice this year…

    I bet ya Jimbo you’re the moron that still has an electric singing fish hanging in your living room… That’s what dem dar Squeeler fans call art…

    No talent ass-clown…

  7. spy

    December 19, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    Bisciotti has got to be thinking about another ‘gut feeling’ , I sure hope so,,,,,,,,,,,,I can’t believe we fans have to put up with this pretender of a head coach for five years,,,,,,,,,,,,Every game I say to myself , ‘I hope he doesn’t get out-coached too bad so we have a chance to win’. ………..

    He and Cameron have to go and soon,,,,,,,,,Flacco may be a pretender also , we won’t know for sure until he gets decent coaching,,,,,,,,,,,,he may have four years experience but it is the same year four times,,,,,,,,he has not grown………..

  8. Bryan

    December 19, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    The Ravens are simply not a great team. They are a good team, but not a great team. Ironically, their status has been confirmed by their success this year. They are not good enough to beat Pittsburgh unless they play at 120 percent, thereby having nothing left in the tank for several weeks to follow. When they are a truly great team, they will be able to beat anybody, and have plenty left in reserve for the games to come.

    The old Colts, circa 1967-71, had that kind of consistency. The Patriots and Steelers have it as well. They don’t need to drain their adrenaline to beat you — they just go out there and methodically do it. Adrenaline only gets you through a game, skill and talent gets you through a season.

  9. Jim

    December 19, 2011 at 8:16 pm

    In tina dator
    whats that on your face won a bee tough guy, you look like the clown with no talent, how did you know i had the singing fish I stole from you. Rivers looks like a siiy but he beat the shit out of the Ravens thay got lucky twice never happen the 3rd time anyway they fight to much with each other REMEMBER crim animals
    have no respect for anything.

    bye the way did you see that Picture of ray ray behind bars

    JIM

  10. Jim

    December 20, 2011 at 1:00 am

    49s steelers game Bad call its ashame they let a person judge a game who should never ever be involved. He just gave the game to the 49s who watches over them SHAME SHAME he should be suspended for the rest of his lige

    Anyway isn’t harbugh scary lookin looks like a psycho

    • spy

      December 21, 2011 at 12:13 pm

      Funny , I have always thought Harbs looked like someone right out of a mental hospital……………..he coaches that way as well…………

  11. Joe Mama

    December 20, 2011 at 10:47 am

    Learn to spell, Jim.

    Besides, who is the real criminals? Rapelessberger, the biggest thug in the NFL James “I hate whitey” Harrison and that thuggish crew.

    You’ll aimlessly pull for Shitsburgh until they start losing and be off their riduculous bandwagon like everyone else.

    I may buy a terrible towel. In case its an emergency and I run out of toilet paper.

  12. The Intimidator

    December 20, 2011 at 11:13 am

    @Jim – That stuff on my lip is what makes your wife/girlfriend happy…

    Nice writing by the way however you need to stop refering to the 5th grade as your “Senior Year”…

    You write like Quasimodo on crack Hoss… Word of advice, doing 3 lines of the Bolivian Marching Powder and hanging out with a stray dog all night under a bridge is not normal…