Eisenberg: 50 Words or Less

DT Brandon Williams

Various thoughts on various things, all in 50 words or less:

It doesn't make one ounce of sense that a team with a minus-7 turnover ratio has the best record in the AFC heading into Week 13. Only two last-place teams (Jets and Jaguars) have poorer ratios. But such surprises are just par for the course with the Ravens in 2021.

Those complaining about the Ravens' line play, both offensive and defensive, should take a step back and consider what's happening in Pittsburgh. The Ravens rank No. 2 in the league in both rushing offense and rushing defense, while the Steelers are No. 28 in both rushing offense and rushing defense.

What a weird quirk that Lamar Jackson has only made two career starts against the Steelers, as opposed to six against the Browns. His body of work against Pittsburgh is iffy, a 1-1 record with five interceptions. You know he'd welcome a breakthrough performance Sunday after last week's four-pick effort.

Yes, Ben Roethlisberger looked every bit of 39 against the Bengals last week, but a week earlier, he threw three touchdown passes without a pick as the Steelers scored 37 points in a loss. The end of an era may be approaching but be careful with thinking it's already over.

The reeling Steelers obviously need a win more than the Ravens Sunday, but if the Ravens win, they'll have three more victories than the Browns and four more than the Steelers with five games to play, effecting reducing the AFC North to a two-team race. That's plenty to play for.

Cool to see the Ravens' John Harbaugh and Steelers' Mike Tomlin hanging with some major historical figures. They'll meet for the 30th time Sunday. The only rival coaches who have opposed each more in NFL history are Curly Lambeau and George Halas (49 times) and Lambeau and Steve Owen (31).

It's too early for end-of-year awards but we can narrow things down in choosing the Ravens' Most Important Replacement Starter. Finalists are cornerback Anthony Averett, inside linebacker Josh Bynes and right tackle Patrick Mekari. The Ravens really needed them all to step in and solidify potential "situations." They have.

How sad that some fans ripped the Browns' Myles Garrett for congratulating Jackson with an on-field tap after Jackson scrambled 22 yards behind the line before throwing a touchdown pass last week. There's nothing wrong with respecting an opponent. "It's a game," Garrett said. I could not agree more.

Be careful with the narrative that Patrick Queen is playing better just because he switched from strong-side to weak-side linebacker. "We play him at (strong) still. People don't even know the positions we have him at," said Defensive Coordinator Wink Martindale, who identified "practicing better" as the key for Queen.

An odd byproduct of the Ravens' schedule being so backloaded with games against AFC North opponents is they'll complete the entire road portion of their division schedule in December, with the three games coming in a four-week span beginning Sunday. I doubt we'll ever see it again and that's fine.

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