PFF Preview: Ravens @ Saints, Week 12
Coming off their scheduled bye week and traveling to the Superdome on Monday Night, the Ravens hope to duplicate last week’s performance of their divisional rivals, as they look to put on the finishing touches and sweep an NFC South division they have absolutely dominated this year. But could Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints (4-6) possibly lose three straight games at home or will Brees get after a vulnerable, retooled Raven’s secondary?
It’s no secret the loss of Jimmy Smith is a big loss for the Ravens. However, the play of Anthony Levine and Danny Gorrer in Week 10 gave Ravens fans some hope. In Week 10, both Levine and Gorrer played well, earning coverage grades of +1.6 and +1.1. That being said, Levine and Gorrer went up against a sixth-round rookie making only his second career start.
Drew Brees is not Zach Mettenberger and the Ravens’ secondary will be dealt a formidable challenge that will prove to be a tough matchup. Brees boast a pass grade of +22.0 (third-best among all quarterbacks), a PFF Quarterback Rating of 94.54 (fifth-best), and an Accuracy Percentage of 80.8% (third out of 37 qualifying quarterbacks). However, when facing pressure, which has been on 33.6% of his drop-backs, Brees’ production has dipped. When dealing with pressure, Brees’ accuracy percentage falls to 73.6%, not a substantial decrease, but a decrease nonetheless. The vast reason for cause is the fact that Brees has thrown a league-tying six interceptions when under pressure, in comparison to just two touchdowns.
Luckily, the Ravens have a few pass rushers at their disposal. Elvis Dumervil leads all 3-4 outside linebackers with a rush grade of +16.8, followed by Pernell McPhee’s +15.4 (third-best), and Terrell Suggs’ +10.1 (seventh-best). Additionally, both Dumervil and McPhee rank in the top-10 in terms of Pass Rushing Productivity (PRP), McPhee netting a PRP of 13.4 (fourth-best) and Dumervil notching a PRP of 11.6 (eight-best). If the Ravens hope to hand the Saints their third consecutive loss and make a playoff push, they’ll have to field a relentless pass rush in order to knock Brees off his game. As for the Saints, someone has to win the NFC South and Brees will look to gun sling the Saints march towards a divisional title, come Monday night.
Here are three more notable numbers for each side:
Pernell McPhee – McPhee has rushed the passer 38.4% of the time from the left side and 52.4% from the right.
Kyle Juszczyk – Thanks to his +2.4 grade in the receiving game Juszczyk ranks first among all fullbacks.
Steve Smith Sr. – Smith Sr. leads all wide receivers with 15 forced missed tackles.
New Orleans Saints
Jimmy Graham – Graham leads all tight ends with 59 receptions and is seventh in yards after the catch.
Junior Galette – Galette has a rush grade of +16.5, third-best among all 4-3 defensive ends.
Patrick Robinson – Robinson (+2.4) is the only member of the Saints’ secondary who has a ‘positive’ green coverage grade.
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