The Baltimore Ravens are turning it up with the playoffs in mind. Three predictions for their Week 12 matchup with the Houston Texans
After crushing the Green Bay Packers 23-0 and improving to 5-5, the Baltimore Ravens will host the Houston Texans on Monday Night Football in Week 12.
Here are three things I think we could see in this matchup of two AFC Wild Card teams.
3. Multiple turnovers by the Ravens defense.
The Ravens defense pitched its third shutout of the season against the Brett Hundley led Packers. The other shutouts came against Andy Dalton’s Bengals and Matt Moore’s Dolphins. In those games, plus against DeShone Kizer and the Browns, the Ravens forced five turnovers. None of the aforementioned quarterbacks is anything to write home about, but neither is the one they face next either.
Backup quarterback Tom Savage will be their next foe. The Texans took a huge step back when they lost rookie Deshaun Watson to a torn ACL earlier this season. The Ravens defense has proven it can absolutely crush weaker quarterbacks. I expect them to have a field day yet again against Savage. I predict at least two interceptions for the Raven’s ball-hawking secondary, and a forced fumble.
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2. Joe Flacco will have his best game this season.
There’s no sugar coating that Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco has played poorly this season. His offensive line has seen more injuries than you can count on one hand it seems, and his wide receivers fail to get consistent separation and make contested catches. Flacco has more interceptions than touchdowns this year, and that is beyond unacceptable for a 10th year, Super Bowl MVP, franchise quarterback.
He always seems to play his best under pressure though, when the rest of the world is watching like they will be in primetime Monday night. That’s why he’s been one of the best playoff quarterbacks in recent memory, and titled “playoff Joe” or “January Joe” by Ravens fans.
Flacco has yet to have a 300+ yard game or throw for more than two touchdowns this season. I think that changes this week. The Texans have taken some hits on defense, most notably losing one of the best defensive players in the league in J.J. Watt. I predict Flacco will find the end zone three times and eclipse 300 passing yards. It’s sad that I feel this is a bold prediction, but that’s been the state of the Ravens offense this year.
1. Breshad Perriman will have his best game of the season as well.
This one is pretty bold as well, sadly. 2015 first round pick Breshad Perriman has been the biggest disappointment on the team by far this season for the Ravens. After missing his entire rookie year with injuries, he returned to have a solid season as the fourth receiver on the depth chart. After Steve Smith Sr. retired and Kamar Aiken left in free agency, most people believed Perriman would step up and break out in 2017. He has only regressed though.
Against the Packers, John Harbaugh decided to bench Perriman. Hopefully, this will ignite a fire under him and push him to be the receiver he is capable of being. He has all of the physical tools you need to be a successful receiver in this league. We saw flashes of his talent last year. I think we’ll some more flashes this week.
I predict he will have over 50 yards and possibly a touchdown. Not a great game still, but it would definitely be his best this year. The Ravens need more production from their receivers, and Perriman stepping up would be a huge boost to the offense. I really hope he can shed his current “bust” label and become the receiver the Ravens envisioned him to be.