Upon Further Review: Ravens Week 2

September, 16, 2013
9/16/13
1:25
PM ET
An examination of four hot issues from the Baltimore Ravens' 14-6 win over the Cleveland Browns:

[+] EnlargeBrandon Weeden
Brad Mills/USA TODAY SportsTerrell Suggs and the Ravens had Browns QB Brandon Weeden trying to escape pressure for much of Sunday's game.
What a rush: This is what the Ravens had envisioned from their pass rush: 12 quarterback hits and five sacks. Not surprisingly, Terrell Suggs and Elvis Dumervil led the charge, combining for two sacks and six quarterback hits. Haloti Ngata (two quarterback hits) and Arthur Jones (one sack) also contributed, getting through up the middle. The Ravens' sacks were momentum-changers. Three of the sacks ended drives, and Jones' sack came immediately after running back Ray Rice fumbled. Baltimore's eight sacks this season are tied for fifth-most in the NFL.

Struggling going deep: Joe Flacco was 0-for-5 on passes thrown more than 20 yards downfield against the Browns and is 2-for-13 on such throws this season, according to ESPN Stats & Information. The strong-armed starting quarterback excelled in this area during last season's playoffs, completing 13-of-26 passes of such length with four touchdowns and zero interceptions. While Flacco hasn't been accurate on his deep throws this year, there are other reasons why he hasn't connected downfield more often. The Ravens haven't had one of their top deep threats, Jacoby Jones, who has been sidelined the past six quarters because of a knee injury. And, without an established No. 2 target, receiver Torrey Smith is drawing either the other team's top cornerback or double coverage.

Tight end problems: Through two games, the Ravens can't get the ball in the hands of their tight ends and can't keep it away from the other teams' tight ends. Denver's Julius Thomas and Cleveland's Jordan Cameron have combined for 10 catches for 256 yards and two touchdowns. Dating back to last season's AFC Championship Game, the Ravens have allowed a tight end to record at least 83 yards receiving in four straight games. There has been no such success for the Ravens this year. Against the Browns, Baltimore's tight ends totaled two catches for 26 yards. Ed Dickson dropped Flacco's first pass of the game and wasn't targeted again. It marked the fourth time in Dickson's past 16 games (including playoffs) that he was held without a catch.

Kicking surprise: No one expected Billy Cundiff to be the best kicker on the field Sunday. That's what happened when Ravens kicker Justin Tucker missed wide right on field goals from 50 and 44 yards. Tucker was the second-most accurate rookie kicker in NFL history last season, when he missed only three times on 33 kicks. "I'm not really worried," Tucker said after the game. "The fact of the matter is that I missed two, and I missed two in a row, and that’s uncharacteristic." Tucker had made 11 straight at M&T Bank Stadium before missing his two attempts Sunday.

Jamison Hensley

ESPN Ravens reporter

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