The two tackles have come under some scrutiny this week after allowing four sacks to the Chiefs, and reporters have asked about the possibility of moving veteran left tackle
Ravens Offensive Coordinator Cam Cameron didn’t get into the specifics about the starting lineup, but said that he’s pleased with the way the line has performed.
“I really like the way our offensive line is playing,” Cameron said. “I really like the way our young tackles play. We’re thrilled to have Bryant McKinnie here and our line is getting better and better.”
Osmele is also pleased with his progression five games into his career.
“I feel good with where I am at this point of my career,” Osemele said. “I’m just trying to get better every game and learn from every game.”
The Ravens went up against talented pass rushers in Kansas City, battling Justin Houston and Pro Bowler Tamba Hali. They will face another test this week with the Cowboys’ premier pass rushers DeMarcus Ware and Anthony Spencer.
“We’ve gone against some good fronts and we’re just going to keep getting better,” Cameron said. “That’s our plan. It’s still early in the year.”
“Obviously with [Ware], we got to stop him,” Osemele added. “We have to know where he is at all times.”
What’s the key to forcing turnovers? Not tip drills
The Ravens have forced 12 turnovers on the year, which ranks as the third most in the NFL this season. The defense is coming off a three-turnover game against the Chiefs, where they had two interceptions and two fumble recoveries.
Now they’ll face quarterback Tony Romo, who threw five interceptions in his last game. With Romo and the Cowboys coming to town, what is the key for the Ravens to keep the turnovers coming?
“If you are hustling to the ball, and you are tough and you are hitting hard, the ball is coming out,” Pees said. “That’s the key thing is when you watch teams that really are good at getting turnovers, there are a lot of guys around the football.”
Pees made it clear that the key to getting turnovers had nothing to do with practicing tip drills or strip drills, which almost never happens in the NFL.
“We haven’t practiced the tip drill in 20 years,” Pees said, laughing. “I mean, come on. First of all, who wants to go out and teach a defensive guy to tip it? Don’t you want to teach him to catch it? We’re all going to go out and teach a guy how to bat the ball up? I don’t think so.
“I have been doing this 40 years, and probably practiced two tip drills in my lifetime, and that was when I played in high school.”
Offensive Balance Key vs. Cowboys
To neutralize elite pass rushers in Ware and Spencer, a key for the Ravens will be to strike a balance on offense.
“Balance is a big word that’s used a lot – run and pass – I think this is one of those games where it really comes into play a lot,” Cameron said. “You’ve got to mix run and pass. If [Ware] knows it’s an obvious passing situation, and you’re in that situation a lot, he’s tough to handle.”
Ware has five sacks on the season and is currently riding a 10-game streak with at least one sack. Spencer has two sacks and nine quarterback pressures on the year.
Boldin: Drops Not A Lingering Concern
In Sunday’s win against the Chiefs, a number of drops were a problem for the offense.
The drops stalled drives and were part of the reason the Ravens didn’t get into the end zone for the first time this season. Despite the miscues, the Ravens don’t see the drops as a lingering concern.
“That’s part of football, you just keep moving on,” Boldin said.
“We don’t like drops,” Head Coach John Harbaugh said Monday. “We’re not happy about that. We would really much prefer to catch the ball when we get the opportunity.”