Ravens report card: Offense struggles against Dolphins

Ravens report card: Offense struggles against Dolphins
December 7, 2015, 11:00 am
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It's time to grade the Ravens after their 15-13 loss to Miami that has the Ravens (4-8) teetering on the brink of the first losing season of the Harbaugh era. We begin with the offense:


Like Joe Flacco has done in other games this year, Matt Schaub put up numbers that look OK in fantasy football but not nearly as good on the field. Schaub finished 32-for-46 for 308 yards and one touchdown, with two interceptions. And this being Schaub, one of the interceptions was returned for a touchdown. Schaub obviously had his bell rung late in the second quarter before his two-interception meltdown that turned the game. The NFL should have to answer for how Schaub never missed a snap despite slamming his head into the turf and grimacing in obvious pain. It's clear that any ball thrown by Schaub farther than 10 yards is an adventure, and the Dolphins made good breaks on several of them. Schaub did thread a few nice throws in, but overall, the good throws were few and far between.


Rookie Buck Allen looks to be the big winner in the wake of the Ravens rash of injuries this year. No one has stepped up to shine in the moment more than Allen. He was outstanding against the Dolphins, with 17 carries for 63 yards and 12 catches -- one shy of the franchise record -- for 107 yards, including a nifty 41-yard catch-and-run touchdown. Terrance West had eight carries for 31 yards, but it's surprising that the Ravens couldn't muster more than 94 rushing yards and 3.6 yards a carry against the lowest-rated run defense in the league. And facing 2nd-and-3 from the Dolphins 4-yard line, the Ravens failed to pick up 3 yards on three straight runs, turning the ball over on downs.


The Ravens averaged just 3.6 yards against the lowest-rated run defense in the league. Matt Schaub was sacked three times, hit 10 times, and generally harassed. Left tackle James Hurst had a rough day filling in for Eugene Monroe. He was beaten by Olivier Vernon twice on sacks, and then had a huge holding penalty that nullified a first down as the Ravens were driving late. Schaub was sacked on the next play and the Ravens had to punt. Center John Urschel and the line got no surge on the fourth-and-inches QB sneak.


Really, this group should probably just get an 'incomplete' grade. Maxx Williams missed the game with a concussion, and Crockett Gillmore left with a back injury. That left rookie Nick Boyle as the only healthy tight end. He finished with three catches for 15 yards, and Gillmore had one catch for 7 yards before leaving.


Kamar Aiken had a couple of tough grabs en route to six catches for 48 yards. Chris Givens (3-68) remains the Ravens best -- or, really, only -- downfield threat. Daniel Brown made his first career catch, for 17 yards, and had a long touchdown catch wiped off on a very questionable pass interference penalty. Jeremy Butler (4-43) got involved as well, but with Schaub under pressure, the Ravens didn't take a lot of shots downfield. Schaub didn't help this group at times with some inaccurate throws.

[RELATED: NFL to follow up with Ravens on Schaub concussion protocol