BATTLE PLANS: Ravens v. Giants
1. Fast-Track the Running Game
Against a struggling Giants defense, the Ravens offense has to find a way to open it up. However, that doesn’t mean that they have to pass the ball out of these more open sets and formations.
Using Ray Rice out of single back sets and getting him involved in the draw/delay game is a way to puncture the New York rush and keep the offense humming at a fast pace. It might help Rice as well to see a less condensed front. If Rice gets going, so too does the play-action passing game from the shotgun set – something the Ravens don’t do with Flacco.
2. Throw Underneath on First Down
To get Flacco back into a rhythm, Jim Caldwell has to call more high percentage pass plays on first down. These could be quick dump-offs or flares to Rice, or getting Dennis Pitta involved on crossers and hitches. Either way, Flacco should be able to hit on a few 3-to-5 yard pass plays.
Flacco is a rhythm quarterback, and there really is no way for him to establish a rhythm when he misses deep stick throws. Shorten the passing game, let Flacco get comfortable, and he should play a better game.
3. Stay on Schedule
The last thing the Ravens want to face is New York’s “NASCAR” package—in which Osi Umenyiora, Justin Tuck, Mathias Kiwanuka and Jason Pierre-Paul are on the field at the same. This incredible front line speed rush can’t even get on the track unless it’s an obvious passing situation.
Clearly, it will be on the offense to stay out of these compromising third-and-long situations. If they can’t do so, they will be faced with a major headache all Sunday long. To maintain positive gains on early downs means running the ball effectively and completing passes on first down.
For the defensive plans and the match up to watch CLICK HERE