The Monday Night Football Matchup in Week 12 is a good one between the Baltimore Ravens and the Los Angeles Rams. Even on the road, the Ravens are the favorite, but this isn’t going to be an easy game and is going to take a complete team effort to get the job done.
Let’s break down two major X-Factors for the Ravens to get the job done.
Ravens Run Defense
One of the big keys for the Ravens on Monday is the run defense. Todd Gurley got off to a slow start to the season, but he is finally heating up.
Against the Chicago Bears, Gurley rushed 25 times for 97 yards and a touchdown. On the season, he has 129 yards for 525 yards and seven touchdowns. Jared Goff has not been impressive this season and hasn’t thrown a touchdown in his last two games.
A defense wants to take away the opposing team’s best option and in this case, it’s Gurley and the running game. If they can make the Rams a passing team, the defense is going to be in really good shape because it’s going to be hard for the Rams to win this game through the air.
If Gurley has less than 75 yards rushing in this game, the Ravens should be able to come away with the victory.
Remember when people didn’t think Lamar Jackson could be an NFL quarterback because he couldn’t throw the ball? Those people seem few and far between now because he has proven not only can he be an NFL quarterback, he is one of the best in the league.
On the season, Jackson has thrown for 2,258 yards, 19 touchdowns, and five interceptions. On the ground, Jackson has rushed 115 times for 788 yards and six touchdowns.
Opposing teams can make life tough on Jackson throwing the ball, but no one has figured out how to slow down his legs. Defenses have tried to put a spy on him, but it hasn’t done much because he is so shifty it takes more than one player to take him away.
Earlier this year, Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson rushed eight times for 32 yards against the Rams and that is for a guy who hasn’t used his legs as much this year.
If Jackson is running wild, the Rams are going to have a hard time slowing down this offense, and it wouldn’t be shocking to see them put up 30 points or more.