Ravens look to rebound after ‘whupping’ by Texans
The Ravens managed just 211 yards of offense against the Texans, and will need to bounce back against the Browns in Week 17 to keep their playoff hopes alive.
With their postseason chances on the line, the Baltimore Ravens laid an egg against the Houston Texans Sunday. Quarterback Joe Flacco completed just 42 percent of his passes and threw three interceptions, allowing the Texans to jump to a 16-0 lead in the first half before cruising to a 25-13 victory over the Ravens.
The Ravens aren’t eliminated from playoff contention and can still get in with a win in Week 17 over the Cleveland Browns, although help would be necessary. Two straight losses for the Cincinnati Bengals or a loss by the San Diego Chargers would open the door for the Ravens to nab a postseason berth.
Still, that possibility only exists if the Ravens can defeat the Browns, which will require a better offensive showing than the team managed in Week 16. Baltimore managed just 211 yards of offense, the team’s lowest total of the year, against the Texans. Wide receiver Steve Smith finished with five receptions for 49 yards and expressed his frustration after the game:
“Bottom line is offensively, we just got our ass kicked,” Smith said. “That’s what happened. That’s what the score looks like. That’s what it looks like when you just lose. That is the consequences of losing.”
Flacco had similar comments about the offense’s lack of production, which yielded its lowest point total of the season:
“We got our [butts] kicked. It’s really simple,” Flacco said. “We just got whupped. No other way about it. The defense played well. Special teams played well and we didn’t do a single thing on offense. We just got beat up and whupped.”
Predictably, it was Houston defensive end J.J. Watt who caused the most problems for the Ravens’ offense. The two-time first-team All-Pro dominated the Baltimore offensive line and was the primary reason Justin Forsett was held to just 19 rushing yards.
Watt finished with just one of two sacks for the Texans on the day, but Flacco said after the game that he felt like he was “getting hit in the back every time” he dropped back to pass.
Now the Ravens have a week to prepare for a bounce back from the poor showing, and until then there will be plenty of critics with things to say about the Baltimore offense, although Smith says the team is prepared to ignore that:
“We expect and understand and anticipate all of the negative feedback and all of the fat, lazy, sorry couch quarterbacks are going to come out,” Smith said. “We expect that and understand that. We’re not going to pay attention to it.”
The Ravens rank eighth in the nation in points scored and 11th in total offensive yardage.