Should We Be Worried?: Ravens versus Cardinals Preview

Once upon a time in August 2015, if you would’ve told me that the Ravens would be the owner of one of the worst records in the NFL, I’d say you’re crazy. No, I’d say that you were, pardon my expression, batshit insane since the Ravens were one of the teams thought to vie for the Lombardi Trophy. However, almost three months later, and due to a combination of misplays and the odds forever being in someone else’s favor, the Ravens are 1-5 heading into tonight’s game against the resurgent Arizona Cardinals.

Carson Palmer has been dialed up to 20 this season, while Joe Flacco admits that he’s been having some troubles working out the kinks in his new system. Larry Fitzgerald has also dipped in a Lazurus Pit, putting up some of his best numbers in years. Meanwhile, the Ravens’ receiving corps, as mentioned throughout my preseason reviews of the team, has struggled to score. Hell, Steve Smith, Sr. is the most-consistent weapon they have–and that’s with him having broken back bones, being 36, and saying that he’d quit if the Ravens traded him (gotta love that loyalty). And, let’s not even talk about the defensive woes Baltimore’s faced.

But, weirdly, all hope isn’t lost. Yes, it’s unlikely that the Ravens will make it to the playoffs. It’s even more unlikely that they’ll go to the “Big Game.” At this point, some pundits are just hoping the Ravens can get another win. However, I still feel that all hope isn’t lost. See, the Cardinals are a good team. And while the Ravens’ secondary has been the equivalent of Swiss cheese, pardon the cliche, they still have the capability to play well. I mean, this is, aside from a few missing components (one of which being Terrell Suggs), pretty much the same team that almost went to Super Bowl XLIX on defense.

But, with all the miscues, I see the Ravens (finally) getting it together tonight. Will it be a cakewalk? Hell, no. It’ll probably be a tough-as-year-old-pork-chops game. But, I foresee Baltimore eking out a victory. Steve Smith, Sr.’s fire will be matched. It just friggin’ has to be.

Speed on the Beat

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