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 »This Week in History
Baltimore Ravens
INSIDE SLANT

  Inside Slant | Notes, Quotes | Strategy and Personnel | Player Wire

  Ravens search for their identity

The Baltimore Ravens are still trying to find themselves.

Lucky for them, so are most of the other teams in the NFL.

The Ravens had an uneven start to the season with a blowout win over the Buffalo Bills followed by a disappointing loss to the Cincinnati Bengals in Week 2.

Baltimore is preparing this week for the surprising Denver Broncos, who have looked solid in two victories to open the season.

"It's early and we just have to grind and become better and become mentally tough and fight and become a good football team," Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said. "Nobody in the NFL is a good football team yet. So, it remains to be seen who the good football teams are, and that's what we've got to try to become."

The Ravens offense is off to a high-flying start, averaging 35 points per game.

Quarterback Joe Flacco is ranked seventh in the league with 612 yards, five touchdowns and two interceptions. All three of the team's new receivers Michael Crabtree, Willie Snead and John Brown have touchdown receptions.

Flacco is looking to quickly bounce back from the loss to the Bengals.

"It was a tough game, and we have to play better," Flacco said. "But for the start ... You can definitely tell why it's better to get off to a good start here in this league. It's really just good to play (well early). You really just have to play a good 60 minutes of football all the way through in order to win in this league. We did a lot of good things after that start, and I think it shows a lot about our team the fact that we were able to get back into that game.

"It shows a lot about what we were capable of doing. We executed a lot better after the first couple series. So, we just have to keep that in mind moving forward. We don't have to try to do too much. We just have to be out there each doing our own individual job not trying to do too much and just doing what we're asked to do. I think everything will take care of itself."

Baltimore will have to make some adjustments on defense without top linebacker C.J. Mosley, who has a bruised left knee. Mosley had been in charge of calling the plays on defense. Safety Eric Weddle will now assume that role while Mosley is sidelined.

Cornerback Maurice Canady was also placed on injured reserve with a thigh injury. The Ravens added depth by signing veteran linebacker Albert McClellan, who played six years in Baltimore before being released Sept. 1.

The defense will face another tough test against Denver, which is ranked fourth in total offense.

"We're fine; it's a 16-game season," safety Eric Weddle said. "You're not going to play great every week, but you have to find ways to win, and we didn't do that tonight. The sky's not falling, but we have to correct some things.

"That's why we have practice and coaching. Everyone in this room is accountable. We will take a look at ourselves first and see what we can do better and get back to work."

The Ravens will have one advantage over Denver with the extra days to rest from the previous physical game against Bengals.



SERIES HISTORY: 12th regular-season meeting. Broncos lead series, 6-5. In postseason play, Baltimore is 2-0. The Ravens are 5-1 when playing Denver at home. However, the Broncos have won three straight regular-season matchups, the most recent being a 19-13 victory in Denver on Sept. 13, 2015.


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