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Report Card: Week 3 at Rams

After a very disappointing week three performance in Tennessee a banged up Ravens team completely dominated the St. Louis Rams. Their first half may have been one of the best in football history as they went into the break leading 21-0, allowing only 81 total yards and three yards passing. Torrey Smith, after looking completely every time he’s been on the field until this point, had a historic day at receiver and Joe Flacco looked absolutely stellar at quarterback.

Quarterbaback – A-

Throwing for 389 yards and three touchdowns for a 103.6 passer rating was just an incredibly performance by Joe Flacco. Certainly Flacco has the ability to develop into an elite QB but he can’t get a solid “A” or “A+” because he did fumble the ball once and missed a few easy throws, in particular when he over threw Torrey Smith for what would have been both of their fourth touchdowns in the game.

Running Backs – A

While he only had eight carries Ray Rice rushed for 79 yards, an average of 9.9 yards per rush. Rice was also, as usual, a major threat in the passing game, catching five passed for 83 yards. Ricky Williams was well in the mix too in the running game and also broke lose in the St. Louis defense, averaging 8.4 yards on five rushed for 42 yards.

Wide Receivers – A+

Who was going to step up for Lee Evans, opposite of a reliable Anquan Boldin? That was the question the Ravens were faced with all week and it was answered right away. What a coming out party for second-round draft pick Torrey Smith who took his first three career receptions to the house, a first in the NFL. Smith finished the game with five receptions for 152 yards and three touchdowns as he abused Justin King on the outside. Boldin was reliable as well, averaging 10.6 yards per catch, bringing in seven receptions for 74 yards. Ed Dickson was also a big threat over the middle, finishing the game with five catches for 51 yards.

Offensive Line – B

Andre Gurode got his first on the field action with the Ravens and played well in an unnatural left guard spot while Ben Grubbs and Mark LeVoir were out with injuries. The o-line did allow two sacks but for the most part Flacco had time to stand in the pocket so he could pick apart the Rams’ weak secondary.

Defensive Line – A+

The Rams got absolutely nothing going on the ground thanks to another great effort by the defensive line plugging up running lanes. For a third-straight game Haloti Ngata was the best player on the field as he was again an unblockable force that disrupted the quarterback all day. Ngata, Terrence Cody, Cory Redding, Arthur Jones, and Pernell McPhee all has great moments in the game, none better than Ngata scooping up a fumble and running it in for his first career touchdown.

Linebackers – B

Ray Lewis, Jameel McClain, and Terrell Suggs each sacked Sam Bradford in the game, helping produce a dominant pass rush. All game long the linebackers forced Bradford to make plays on the run. The only issue was that when the Rams o-line got to the second level the linebackers struggled to shed blocks.

Secondary – A-

The Rams didn’t exactly have a big-time wide receiver to use but nobody turned up a big game. Bradford passed for only 166 yards in the game, only three in the first half. His INT to Lardarius Webb was also a highlight of the unit.

Special Teams – C

Billy Cundiff had a rare bad day kicking field goals. While he kicked three he missed two. Sam Koch didn’t have to punt very often but when he did he booted them 44.5 yards average with inside the 20. LaQuan Williams was impressive as a kick returner, taking his two returns back for 60 yards while Lardarius Webb average 11.0 yards per punt return for 55 yards.

Coaches – A-

The coaches did a great job getting the Ravens back on track after a huge let down in Tennessee and they also did a great job exploiting a depleted secondary. The only problem, though, was the team had to settle for two many field goals and seemed to put the game in cruise control after taking a big first quarter lead.

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Corey Johns

Editor in Chief
You could say Corey was born to become a sports journalist. His father won a national championship coaching college soccer. His mother is a baseball fanatic who hasn't missed seeing an Orioles game since 1983 (literally, sometimes it's annoying). His great uncle was a big-time boxing promoter and his maternal grandfather was once a department head at the Baltimore Sun. Basically, sports and journalism run through his blood. He played just about every little league sports there was when he was a kid and was a multi-sport athlete in high school; even playing in the first-ever high school sanction Rugby game in the country. Eventually he retired from sports as an undefeated Maryland state Rugby champion as a high school senior. Perhaps lack of athletic talent has more to do with the retirement, but he will tell you that it more had to do with a great desire to jump right into media. Upon his graduation from University of Maryland, Baltimore County as a triple communications major, Corey started the So Much Sports network and has continued to grow his websites and continues to work to make them premier sports media outlets.

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