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Week 1 Game Recap: Baltimore Ravens 20, Cincinnati Bengals 0


What you need to know

Baltimore Ravens

The Ravens offense was extremely conservative and inefficient. Joe Flacco looked healthy against the Bengals but did not play well. Joe Flacco failed to complete a pass in the second half and the Ravens offense could not capitalize on 5 turnovers forced by the defense. Buck Allen and Terrence West carried the load in a run heavy approach churning out consistent yards but not making explosive plays. West and Allen each had more carries than Flacco had pass attempts. Danny Woodhead was heavily involved on the Ravens first possession before leaving with what appeared to be a serious hamstring injury. Flacco tried to get Breshad Perriman involved early but the two could not connect. Flacco then looked to connect with Jeremy Maclin who took a slant route 48 yards to the house thanks to a play design that gave him plenty of room to run. Mike Wallace saw only 1 target.

Cincinnati Bengals

The game was a debacle in all aspects. Andy Dalton made a couple bad decisions that led to interceptions. The offensive line, especially the center and tackles, was absolutely dominated by the Ravens front. The atrocious line play led to five sacks and the running backs regularly getting hit in the backfield. The backfield was a full-fledged committee approach with Jeremy Hill, Joe Mixon and Giovani Bernard each rotating in to take a turn as the primary back for a series. It will remain a situation to avoid for fantasy owners until one back separates from the pack and the Bengals offense shows some signs of life.

Baltimore Ravens

QB Joe Flacco, 66 offensive snaps, Pass: 9 - 17 - 121 - 1 TD / 1 INT
Joe Flacco and the Ravens offense took a hyper conservative approach against the Bengals. The offense was inefficient and failed to take advantage of the 5 turnovers forced by the defense. Flacco attempted 1 pass downfield but otherwise relied on the run game, short passing game, and defense to generate offense. The game plan became even more conservative after the Ravens took 17-0 lead at halftime. Flacco did not complete a pass in the second half and both Terrence West and Buck Allen ended the game with more carries than Flacco had pass attempts. Flacco heavily targeted Danny Woodhead on the Ravens opening possession. The drive stalled in the red zone with a wayward Flacco pass falling between Woodhead and Breshad Perriman forcing a field goal attempt. The Ravens following possession ended with a quick 3 and out. On 3rd down Flacco threw at the feet of Jeremy Maclin who had separation in the middle of the field. The Ravens again went 3 and out the ensuing possession. This time Flacco was sacked on 3rd down after holding the ball far too long and not throwing to Nick Boyle who was open underneath. Flacco connected with Boyle off of play action for 14 yards and hit Jeremy Maclin on a slant route who took the catch 48 yards to the end zone for the Ravens first touchdown. Under pressure Flacco threw off target on a check down to Terrence West. The pass was tipped and intercepted. Flacco did not complete a pass for the remainder of the game.

RB Javorius Allen, 33 offensive snaps, Rush: 21 - 71 - 0 (1 targets)
Buck Allen saw a carry even before Danny Woodhead left the game with injury. Allen was going to play a role for this offense even before the Woodhead injury. His role increased significantly following the injury and Allen ended up with more snaps and carries than Terrence West. The numbers are slightly skewed by the fact that West did not play in the Ravens final two possessions which featured 6 running plays to Allen. However, the fact remains that the Ravens trust Allen more than West as a pass catcher and Allen ran as well or better than West. Allen appeared to be faster and more sudden than West but perhaps not as powerful. Buck Allen had a 10 yard gain on a nice inside run negated by penalty. Allen also had a 14 yard reception negated by a holding penalty.

RB Terrance West, 27 offensive snaps, Rush: 19 - 80 - 1 (1 targets)
Terrence West played well against the Bengals. With Danny Woodhead leaving the game during the Ravens first possession West split touches and snaps with Buck Allen. In fact Allen saw more snaps than West. West will be listed as the starter and function as the goal line back but Allen will play significant snaps every week. West kept the Ravens offense on schedule consistently finding yards inside. West did not produce any explosive plays but consistently churned out chunks of yardage to move the chains especially on the Ravens 10 minute 3rd quarter drive. West had a 4 yard reception on a check down negated by penalty. Following an interception the Ravens took over at the Bengals 2 yard line. West got the 1 and only carry needed to punch the ball into the end zone running behind Ronnie Stanley. West saw a pass he could have secured go off his hands for an interception.

RB Danny Woodhead, 6 offensive snaps, Rush: 1 - 4 - 0, Rec: 3 - 33 - 0 (3 targets)
Danny Woodhead looked like he would be a staple in the Ravens offense until leaving the game with injury during the Ravens first possession. Woodhead made his first catch for a gain of 12 running a quick out route and out flanking his defender. Woodhead caught his second target lined up in the slot and matched up against a linebacker for a 13 yard gain. Woodhead picked up 8 more yards running another out route and converting a 3rd down in the red zone. Woodhead fell and clutched his hamstring running another route in the flat a few plays later. Woodhead was carted off the field and did not return.

WR Jeremy Maclin, 48 offensive snaps, Rec: 2 - 56 - 1 (4 targets)
Jeremy Maclin made his first grab in the flat serving as a check down for Flacco and picked up 7 yards. Maclin ran a simple slant route and got a beautiful pick on Darqueze Dennard thanks to Ben Watson giving him room to run. Maclin capitalized and took the slant 48 yards for a touchdown showing off his impressive speed. Maclin drew a pass interference flag running a curl route. Maclin slipped and fell at the Bengals 5 yard line running a slant route.

WR Mike Wallace, 47 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 8 - 0 (1 targets)
Mike Wallace caught a slant route from the slot for a gain of 8 on his only target. Wallace saw the second most snaps of Ravens wide receivers, only 1 snap behind Jeremy Maclin, but did not see many looks from Flacco.

WR Breshad Perriman, 42 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 5 - 0 (4 targets)
Breshad Perriman caught his first targeting running a curl route for a 5 yard gain. Perriman was targeted in the endzone running a skinny post but the pass was broken up by Darqueze Dennard. Perriman dropped a pass that was thrown slightly behind him running a slant.

TE Nick Boyle, 45 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 14 - 0 (1 targets)
Nick Boyle made his first reception in the flat off of play action for a 14 yard gain. Boyle saw the most snaps of the Ravens tight ends but was not involved in the passing game.


Cincinnati Bengals

QB Andy Dalton, 61 offensive snaps, Pass: 16 - 31 - 170 - 0 TD / 4 INT, Rush: 1 - 2 - 0
Dalton was awful. He turned the ball over five times and took five sacks. While much of the blame for the abysmal offensive performance clearly falls on the quarterback, he was setup to fail by poor play calling and horrific protection. Two pass attempts on the opening drive were emblematic of the problems in Week 1. On the first, Dalton looked to get it quickly to A.J. Green, but Green was held up. Bengals center Russell Bodine was immediately walked 7 yards straight back by a bull rush to destroy the pocket. There was no time to even get to a second read before Dalton was forced to throw it away. The next play, a 3rd-and-long, the Ravens got instantaneous pressure from the outside in both directions and Dalton was quickly sacked. Dalton has always struggled against pressure, but even the best quarterback in the league would have had a rough day given the surrounding circumstances. The second drive ended on a Dalton interception. He was trying to hit Green on a slant but Ravens linebacker Patrick Onwuasor made an extremely athletic play to quickly drop and leap to get a hand on the pass, tipping it up in the air into the cornerbacks arms. Not a great decision by Dalton, but you have to tip your hat to the defender for an outstanding play. The third drive of the game ended with Daltonís only truly egregious mistake. After driving the team 82 yards out of the shadow of their own end zone, Dalton made an awful choice to throw towards Brandon LaFell in double coverage in the middle of the end zone, resulting in his second interception of the day. Daltonís worst throw of the day came on the next drive. Cody Core was streaking down the right sideline and had his man beat by at least five yards for what should have been a long touchdown, but Dalton sailed the pass out of bounds. Wind was a factor all game, but it was a throw Dalton has to make. The third interception came just before halftime. Dalton tried to throw a quick slant to Tyler Boyd but Terrell Suggs leaped and the ball ricocheted off of his helmet high into the air and eventually into the hands of a Raven defender. Dalton had another turnover inside the Ravens 10-yard line after he was stripped from behind while trying to roll out to buy time.

RB Joe Mixon, 22 offensive snaps, Rush: 8 - 9 - 0, Rec: 3 - 15 - 0 (3 targets)
Mixon was a big part of the Bengals tailback rotation and played every snap on the second series of the game. After being stuffed on first down, he was able to make something out of nothing on the next play. Mixon caught a short dump off from Dalton, made the first man miss and then accelerated down the sideline for a 10-yard gain and first down. Mixon took his next carry for eight yards, showing nice patience before making a sharp cut to get upfield. The two highlight plays early in the first quarter were the only positive plays Mixon had on the day. He managed only seven more yards total on his final ten touches. Mixon played the second most snaps at running back (22) and likely would have led the team had the Bengals not fallen so far behind early in the game.

RB Giovani Bernard, 29 offensive snaps, Rush: 7 - 40 - 0, Rec: 1 - 39 - 0 (2 targets)
Bernard led the Bengals backs in snaps with 26 and played well. However, much of the usage was probably due to game script as the Bengals were behind by three scores for the entire second half and Bernard is the back the Bengals use in the two-minute offense. The Bengals came out rotating running backs by drives. Bernard came in for the third drive of the game and gave the offense a spark. His big play on the drive was a 23-yard run up the middle. He burst through the line and made a Ravens linebacker fall down on a quick juke at the second level to turn a solid gain into a big play.

RB Jeremy Hill, 10 offensive snaps, Rush: 6 - 26 - 0, Rec: 1 - -2 - 0 (1 targets)
The Bengals rotated backs with each getting a series mostly to themselves early. Hill was the first back in the rotation and had the first drive to himself (except for one third down). His best run of the day came on his first touch, cutting through a big hole up the middle and running straight ahead for a gain of 12. Hill started the first drive of the second half as well, but had no room to run. At some point he tweaked his ankle and sat out the final 20 minutes after playing just 10 snaps. With the Bengals trailing, he likely wouldnít have been part of the game plan down the stretch anyway. He indicated after the game that his ankle was fine.

WR A.J. Green, 55 offensive snaps, Rec: 5 - 74 - 0 (10 targets)
Green was targeted often, but often saw extra coverage with the Ravens putting an emphasis on stopping the Bengals top playmaker. Green made some plays on the Bengals best drive of the game to open the second quarter. He caught a 14-yard out route, sliding to catch a well-thrown Dalton pass. Two plays later, he caught another 14-yard reception on a post route. Early in the second half, Green caught a short dump off in the red zone and was pushed out of bounds at the seven yard line.

WR Brandon LaFell, 57 offensive snaps, Rec: 3 - 24 - 0 (5 targets)
LaFell had a quiet day, but it was a positive sign that Dalton looked his way twice in the end zone. On the first play, Dalton looked for LaFell in the middle of the end zone, but linebacker C.J. Mosely sunk underneath and made a leaping interception. A couple drives later, LaFell was open in the end zone and Dalton attempted to get it to him but the ball was tipped out of his hand from behind before he could get the throw off.

WR Tyler Boyd, 42 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 11 - 0 (4 targets)
Boyd was targeted on a quick slant that was tipped at the line for a Ravens interception. His only reception came on an option route to the outside that he took for 11 yards to convert a 3rd-and-9 and get the team into the red zone.

TE Tyler Eifert, 54 offensive snaps, Rec: 1 - 4 - 0 (1 targets)
Eifert had a surprisingly quiet day. He was targeted just once, catching the ball underneath on a short crossing route. Eifert was open a few times in the first half but Dalton didnít look his way. In the second half, Eifert was often asked to chip the end to help out struggling left tackle Cedric Ogbuehi.