5 takeaways from Ravens’ 22-10 loss vs. Dolphins

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The Baltimore Ravens lost to the Miami Dolphins in a disappointing way on Thursday night by the final score of 22-10. Baltimore could get almost nothing going on offense, the Ravens’ defense gave up a few chunk plays despite not allowing an offensive touchdown for almost the entire game, and the team just didn’t look as prepared as they should have.

The loss moves Baltimore’s record to 6-3 through nine games of the 2021 season, and ensures that they won’t be able to take sole possession of first place in the AFC by the time Week 10 is over. Miami is now 3-7 after their big win.

Below we look at five takeaways from the Ravens’ loss to the Dolphins in Week 10.

QB Lamar Jackson can't do it all himself

Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

For as much as Jackson can do with his talent, he needs the help of his teammates, as does any NFL player. The fourth-year quarterback has shown that he can single-handily will the Ravens to victory, but in order to do that he needs his wide receivers to catch passes, his offensive line to block, and others to contribute as well. On Thursday night, he didn’t get a lot of help.

During the first quarter against the Dolphins, Jackson threw a beautiful football in the end zone that wide receiver Sammy Watkins either lost in the lights or thought that he was going to slam into the goal post and let the ball fall next to him. Wideout Marquise Brown dropped multiple passes. The offensive line did not have a good game. While Jackson wasn’t perfect and made some mistakes, he also wasn’t helped by some of the talent around him in certain situations, which cost the offense points.

WR Rashod Bateman has a bright future in Baltimore

Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Even though there weren’t many, one of the few positives that came out of the Ravens’ offensive showing on Thursday night was the performance of Bateman in his fourth-career NFL game. He once again showed that he is the real deal and has the potential to become a star as a professional.

Bateman finished Week 10 catching six of his eight targets for 80 yards. He picked up multiple first downs, showed off his hands, and made the Miami defense worry about him in the passing game. The rookie was expected to play a big part in Baltimore’s offense, and so far he’s become one of Lamar Jackson’s favorite targets.

The Ravens need TE Nick Boyle back

(AP Photo/Matt Patterson)

Baltimore needs tight end Nick Boyle. That fact showed itself maybe more than ever in Week 10. His blocking and underrated receiving skills have been sorely missed ever since he got injured back in 2020, and his presence could really help the offensive line as well as give Lamar Jackson another weapon to throw to.

The Baltimore offensive line did not have a good night on Thursday in Miami. They struggled to open lanes in the running game and keep Jackson clean for most of the night, allowing four sacks and numerous pressures. For a unit that has gone through so much turnover, it’s expected that there will be some growing pains as they get familiar with playing alongside new players. However, it all starts up front for an offense, and Boyle coming back could provide a big boost.

Baltimore has to get off to faster starts

Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

A big storyline coming into Week 10 was the fact that the Ravens were able to come from behind and win football games. However, they put themselves in those situations by not starting fast. While those comeback wins have been impressive, it’s hard to sustain, especially when an offensive unit struggles as much as Baltimore’s did on Thursday night.

On their first two drives in Miami the Ravens moved the ball well, picking up 92 combined yards on 17 combined plays. However, they only got three total points out of those two drives, and on their next four drives only totaled 36 combined yards on 14 combined plays. Getting off to faster starts would help Baltimore build early momentum, and could change the tone of any game that they play in.

The Ravens' defense needs to cut down on allowing big plays

Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Over the course of the 2021 season, the Baltimore defense has been one of the worst teams in the league at giving up big plays of over 20 yards. That didn’t change on Thursday night, especially when it mattered.

Despite not allowing an offensive touchdown until 2:19 to go in the fourth quarter, the Ravens’ defense had communication breakdowns in key moments of the contest. Right before the end of the first half, Baltimore allowed a Dolphins receiver to get open deep down the field for a long gain that would set up a field goal. Then late in the game after the Ravens scored a touchdown to get a small bit of momentum, the Baltimore defense let another Miami receiver run straight up the sideline and get the Dolphins into scoring range. Big plays can be momentum killers, and they did just that against the Ravens in Week 10.

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