So how are we going to view Baltimore’s 30-27 win over the Cardinals on Sunday?
Was the 24-6 halftime deficit a sign that this offense is deeply flawed? Or did the second half comeback show this team can get it done when necessary?
This was a game the Ravens absolutely couldn’t afford to lose, so we’ll take the positive approach.
We wanted to see Joe Flacco take a game over, and that’s essentially what he did in the second half. He missed too many throws early, but the Ravens turned the game around when they got into shotgun and started throwing short passes.
Anquan Boldin finished with 145 yards on seven catches. He drew two pass interference penalties that directly set up touchdowns. Arizona’s cornerbacks couldn’t come up with a way to stop him. The Cardinals slowed down Ray Rice (63 yards rushing), but it didn’t matter.
When the Ravens needed a play late, offensive coordinator Cam Cameron stayed aggressive. Joe Flacco found Torrey Smith for 36 yards to set up the game-winning field goal.
It’s not like the Ravens were lucky to win. They had 405 yards to only 207 for the Cardinals. Arizona is 1-6 because they find ways to lose each week.
The Ravens defense didn’t let the team lose. Kevin Kolb was harassed all day, fumbling two times and getting sacked six more times. Two possible turnovers were called back by penalty.
Kolb’s total lack of pocket presence has to worry the Cardinals, who have now lost 11 straight on the road. Arizona had plenty of chances to win but so often Kolb ran backwards and didn’t know where the pressure was coming from.
The Cardinals only scored 3 points in the second half and their point total was deceptive. Two of their touchdowns came directly off turnovers. Another one came off a punt return. Of course, it’s tough to score on this Ravens defense.
Baltimore hasn’t looked great the last two weeks, but they are still 5-2. The defense is still the league’s best. So how will we view their struggle to beat a bad team like Arizona in the end?
It all depends on what the Ravens do next week in Pittsburgh.