The Baltimore Ravens were coming off a 12-4 season, and they were looking to make the next step into the championship picture. They had added some names on the defense such as Yannick Ngaouke and Calais Campbell, but the offense was hardly touched. The Ravens were relying on Lamar Jackson to build off an impressive MVP campaign. Things did not go to plan for the Ravens, now that they are 10-5 and fighting for the last playoff spot and sitting 3rd in a division they won last year. After peeling off 4 straight wins, this team looks like they are getting hot and they might be able to salvage their playoff hopes.
How the Ravens can make the playoffs
After beating the Browns in a thrilling matchup in Week 14, the Ravens can secure themselves a playoff berth by winning against the 4-10 Cincinnati Bengals. The Ravens now hold the 6th spot in the playoffs, with tiebreakers over the Browns and Colts. The only way that they could drop to 7th is if the Titans, who have won a game against the Ravens and hold the tiebreaker, lose and drop into the wild-card. The Ravens can still jump into the top wild card spot at number 5 if the Dolphins lose, and Titans win. While these hypotheticals could push the Ravens up or down a spot, they should be focusing on taking care of business against the Bengals, and ensuring that they get one of the 3 wild-card spots.
What can the Ravens do in the playoffs
In the past couple of weeks we have seen a Lamar Jackson that has seemed like his MVP self. He is making some throws, while causing havoc with his feet. With an electric Jackson and a solid defense that has added pieces to help with its one weakness in rush defense, this team can be a problem for multiple teams. If the playoffs started right now and the Ravens held on to the 6th seed, they would be playing the Pittsburgh Steelers. The Steelers seem to be on a decline after starting the season 11-0, and the Ravens should look at this as a game that they can win. If they can beat out the Steelers, and the Chiefs, Bills, and Titans win their playoff matchups then the Ravens would be facing the Chiefs. Facing the reigning super bowl champs and Patrick Mahomes is a tall task for anyone, but the Ravens might stand a chance with an MVP like Jackson. The Ravens can rely on their run game to exploit the Chiefs weakness on defense, rush defense, and keep that explosive Kansas City offense on the sideline. If we look at the scenarios laid out then the Ravens have a big chance at making their mark in this postseason. One of the biggest questions that still remains is Jackson’s arm and that Baltimore passing game. If the Ravens can find some kind of passing, then this team could be a surprise during the postseason.
Top Image: AP Photo/ Julio Cortez