3 and Out: Will Ravens use Tyrod Taylor more?
-Getting Tyrod Taylor more involved would be a good idea.
Taylor finally touched the ball offensively Sunday and it worked – an 18-yard run on a reverse. That was it for Taylor against the Bengals, but the Ravens need to use him more. He’s an explosive runner, and as the backup quarterback, he has the arm to make a big play. With Ray Rice struggling, what do the Ravens have to lose, giving Taylor three or four touches a game? Put him in the Wildcat, let him run the read option, put the ball in his hands a few times a game. The way Joe Flacco has played recently, he shouldn’t complain either. Anything that can spark the Ravens’ offense should be utilized.
-The Ravens need to force Torrey Smith the football.
The Ravens took the right approach Sunday, targeting Smith 14 times, eight more times than Rice, who was Flacco’s second-favorite target. Defenses are doing everything they can to take Smith out of the Ravens’ offense. The Ravens can’t allow that to happen. Smith (five catches, 46 yards) didn’t have a big game against the Bengals, but he caught a touchdown pass, and nearly connected for a deep pass that barely eluded him in the end zone. Keep throwing the ball short to Smith, allowing him to use his speed after the catch. And the Ravens keep throwing deep to Smith deep, he and Flacco will eventually connect.
-It would not be surprising to see Bernard Pierce get more touches.
Pierce had 31 yards on eight carries Sunday, compared to Rice who had just 30 yards on 18 carries. Whatever is going on with Rice, he isn’t getting off. Maybe Pierce can find his rhythm if he gets more carries. Again, any options that help the Ravens offense have to be explored.
Extra point: The Ravens’ tight ends are getting more involved.
It hasn’t been dramatic, but Ed Dickson had three catches for 28 yards Sunday, and Dallas Clark had a one-yard touchdown grab. It will help the Ravens greatly if Dickson and Clark can keep moving the chains from time to time. And it’s still possible the Ravens will get starting tight end Dennis Pitts (hip surgery) back at some point. The Ravens would welcome Pitta with open arms.