For more than a decade, the Ravens have been famous for their relentless defense that has made up for a subpar offense. Even in a season that culminated in a Super Bowl victory, the Ravens offense ranked No. 16 in the league while the defense carried them through their schedule.
Things are different in 2012 though, as the offense in Baltimore is picking up for the slack of an aging defense. "They're a pretty good offense. They can score from anywhere on the field," Tyson Jackson told reporters on Thursday. "With Ray Rice in the backfield we've got to be on our toes at all times. They have some pretty good tight ends and their receivers are extremely talented. At all times we just need to mind our Ps and Qs, understand our technique, understand our assignment on that particular play and go out there, try to get three-and-outs as much as possible."
Also helping the cause has been the improved play of Joe Flacco, the Ravens quarterback. In his fifth season as starter, he has career bests in completion percentage and quarterback rating and is pacing to have the best season in his career in both passing yardage and touchdowns. "Each year you watch him and the guy's improving a whole lot," Jackson said. "You know he's doing a pretty good job, so we're going to have our hands full come Sunday."
Given his success, the Chiefs will have to work to avoid allowing either the passing or running game to have success so as to make the Ravens offense rely on just one facet of their offense. "I mean just because they're a balanced team, anything would be good for us, just trying to make them one-dimensional - whether it's running or passing the ball - it'll help our defense out a lot because now we know what to expect on each down," Jackson said.
Jackson has 16 tackles through four games for the Chiefs who stand at 1-3, two games behind the AFC West-leading Chargers.