It was a breakthrough performance for Joe Flacco, as he had hit a bit of a rough patch after a great start. It was the first time Flacco through for over 230 yards since week four, as he racked up 341 yards through the air. His four total touchdowns were the most he scored in any game this season, as he threw for three and ran for another. He completed passes at a 64 percent clip and had only one mistake, a first-half interception to Michael Huff. However, it was Flacco’s only blemish as he had the fourth-highest QBR this week. Overall it was a much-needed encouraging effort by Flacco, as the Ravens will need to put up some points the rest of the season to win games.
Running Backs: F
It was a brutal game from a unit that appeared poised to have a monster day. After all the Raiders had the 21st-ranked run defense and had just been mortally gashed by rookie running back Doug Martin. However, that dream turned out to be a nightmare as Ray Rice and Bernard Pierce combined for an extremely disappointing 58 yards rushing. Rice had a touchdown but his 35 yards were his lowest total in his last 17 games including the playoffs.
Pierce meanwhile had a rough outing a week after scoring his first NFL touchdown. His 2.3 yards per carry was his second worst of the season. It was extra disappointing considering he received his heaviest workload as he had double-digit carries (10) for the first time in his young career. If you take away Pierce’s longest run of 12 yards, he had a miniscule 11 yards on his remaining nine carries, so not the way he envisioned following up his first score last week.
Considering how vulnerable the Raiders’ defense was playing on the road, the Ravens’ running backs deserve this harsh grade.
Wide Receivers: B+
It was the most consistent effort from the wide receiving corp this season, as depth was the theme against the Raiders. Four different receivers had at least 25 yards, as the unit combined for 185 yards and two touchdowns.
Torrey Smith only had two catches, but they went for touchdown strikes of 47 and 20 yards, so he maximized his opportunities. Jacoby Jones, who had a 105-yard kickoff return for a touchdown, also contributed with two catches for 54 yards.
Anquan Boldin and Tandon Doss chipped in with 38 and 26 yards respectively to round out the well-rounded effort from receivers.
This was a big positive as the wide receivers will need to be more consistent going head-to-head with some premier passing offenses in the second half of the season.
Tight Ends: A+
This was the best game of the season by far for this unit. Like the wide receivers, this game was all about depth as both Dennis Pitta and Ed Dickson had over 50 yards for the first time all season. In all, the two tight ends accounted for 126 yards and a very athletic touchdown by Pitta. The leaping score from Pitta was reminiscent of his touchdown against the Cincinnati Bengals in the opening week of the season, as he went up across the middle of the end zone and plucked the ball out of the air to give the Ravens a 17-3 lead.
Dickson meanwhile had an effort that was long overdue, as his 59 yards receiving were 41 percent of his total yards for the whole season. Dickson’s two catches tied a season high as well.
Like the receivers, the tight ends need to re-emerge to turn the passing game around. It had been some lean times for the tight ends in the recent poor stretch for the passing game, but this was a very encouraging effort.
Offensive Line: B-
It was a strong game from the offensive line despite a late lineup change, as Jah Reid started for the ailing Bobbie Williams at left guard. Reid played well, as did the rest of the line, as the unit did not allow a sack for only the second time all season.
It wasn’t the same story for the run blocking, as the team averaged a season-low 2.8 yards per carry, thus the minus aspect to the grade.
Overall the brilliant pass protection and lack of penalties can’t be overlooked in the blowout victory.