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Receivers Eager To Prove People Wrong After Opener

Confidence hasn't wavered in Baltimore's receiving room after the last week's loss to the Broncos.

The passing game struggled mightily in the season opener, leading to more questions from pundits about the receiving corps that is currently without first-round pick Breshad Perriman. 

Now the group wants to get back on the field to put last week's outing far in the rearview mirror.

"You're real eager to go out there and prove everybody wrong, and to go out there and make some plays," wide receiver Marlon Brown said. "You have that bad taste in your mouth from last week and it's just lingering.

"I don't really pay attention to what other people say about our receiving corps because we know what we can do.  The coaches know what we can do. We just have to go out there and do it."

With Perriman sidelined, Brown and Kamar Aiken are currently the top options next to veteran Steve Smith Sr. The two former undrafted receivers have both flashed with big catches during their time with the Ravens, but they struggled to find success in Denver.

Baltimore's offense was unable to pick up chunks of yardage, and the biggest play of the day was a 22-yard completion to Brown down the sideline.

"It just wasn't our day last week. It was a rough start for us," Brown said. "Everything was kind of going wrong. I feel like you just have to not think of last week so much and focus on the now, what you can control and what you can do."

The absence of the downfield passing game has been a big talking point this week, and quarterback Joe Flacco and Offensive Coordinator Marc Trestman acknowledged the Ravens need to take more deep shots.

"We have to throw the ball up the field more than we did," Trestman said.  "Our performance wasn't indicative of how hard our players have worked – how hard we've practice – and I think that's where we're headed.

"We made some mistakes. We'll learn from it, and certainly, part of that is taking our shots and throwing the ball up the field."

Aiken and Brown don't have standout speed like Perriman, but Flacco has said on multiple occasions he believes the Ravens have the pieces in place to attack teams over the top.

"I don't think we're going to have that guy right now that's going to run by guys five times a game," Flacco said. "But we definitely have guys that can run crossing routes and be hit 30 yards downfield and can run double-moves downfield, things like that."

Trestman pointed to the 22-yard pass to Brown as an example of what the Ravens could do to pick up chunk plays.

"We threw the ball the ball deep last week to Marlon. He made a nice back-shoulder catch, but he was running a deep ball, and Joe stopped him with a throw," Trestman said. "It was a great play, and we just have to do more of that. We have to give our guys more opportunities. Joe said it yesterday – he's right – we have to do that. That starts with me."

The makeup of the receiving corps was one of the biggest stories of this year's training camp, and while the opener didn't go how they wanted, the group has another key opportunity to prove itself Sunday against the Raiders.

They've heard questions for weeks about whether they can withstand offseason departures and an injury to the first-round pick, and they are eager to put that discussion to rest.

"I definitely think we have guys – with myself and other guys – that can make those plays," Aiken said. "And we will."

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