Even with a record of 4-5, the Baltimore Ravens have no excuse to miss the playoffs.
The path to the playoffs could not get much easier for the Baltimore Ravens. On Sunday in Week 11, they play the Green Bay Packers, who have been without Aaron Rodgers, arguably the best quarterback in the NFL. When the schedule was released for this season, I chalked this game up as a loss almost immediately. Now, I feel confident that the Ravens can go into Lambeau Field and win with relative ease. That doesn’t mean that will be the case, of course.
Of their seven remaining games, the Ravens will avoid playing Aaron Rodgers, Deshaun Watson and Andrew Luck. Watson was having a tremendous rookie season, while Rodgers and Luck are both elite quarterbacks. As such, the remaining quarterback opponents on the schedule will be (for now) as follows; Brett Hundley, Tom Savage, Matt Stafford, Ben Roethlisberger, Deshone Kizer (or whoever starts for the Browns that week), Jacoby Brissett and Andy Dalton.
The remaining schedule has turned out to be very kind to the Ravens. This doesn’t mean they will win these easy games, though. They have lost to the Bears, Vikings and Jaguars, who were led by Mitch Trubisky, Case Keenum, and Blake Bortles. The Ravens failed to take advantage of those games, but they cannot afford to make the same mistake going forward.
The general consensus seems to be that 9-7 could be enough to make the playoffs via a Wild Card spot. At 4-5, the Ravens must win five of their final seven contests to finish 9-7. This is a tall task for a team that has been as inconsistent from week to week as I have ever seen.
After missing the playoffs in three of the last years since winning the Super Bowl, a playoff berth is imperative this season, possibly more so than ever, for this coaching staff. John Harbaugh’s job could very well hinge on if his team can make it to the postseason.