The Ravens have had an up-and-down start to their championship defense, but in Week 3 they were dominant against the Houston Texans. Baltimore held Houston without a touchdown and found several different ways to score on the Texans. The Ravens scored a rushing touchdown with Bernard Pierce, had a kick return touchdown with Tandon Doss and an interception return for a score by way of linebacker Daryl Smith. The Texans, who entered the game at 2-0, were held to just three field goals. Baltimore and Houston are now both 2-1 at the conclusion of Week 3.
TexansDC of Battle Red Blog thinks the boatload of penalties caused by the Texans were the reason for their lack of success on Sunday:
In the end, the Ravens sent the Texans to 2-1 with a 30-9 loss. Houston sorely missed All-Pro left tackle Duane Brown as the Ravens' front seven seemed to get pressure at will on Matt Schaub. All-Pro wide receiver Andre Johnson took a shot to the shins that, eventually, ended his game early, and the offense was, somehow, even more listless after that.
Surprisingly, the Texans committed 14 penalties for 113 yards. The 14 penalties tied a franchise record for most accepted penalties in a game. I'll say that again. This veteran team, this supposed championship contender, set a record for penalties. The team looked sloppy, unprepared, unfocused and downright bad.
Zachary Beard of Baltimore Beatdown believes the Ravens' defense and special teams deserve a lot of credit for their recent success:
Since a crushing Week One loss to the Denver Broncos in which they allowed Peyton Manning to throw for 7 touchdowns, the Ravens' defense has bounced back tremendously; not allowing a single touchdown since. This resurgent defense has been the recent formula for success for Baltimore; aiding what has looked like an anemic offense up to this point in the season.
A tremendous defensive performance, special teams heroics by Tandon Doss, a rejuvenated Justin Tucker, and a rushing touchdown by Bernard Pierce were the keys to today's victory. One thing worth noting, however, is that the offense is still continuing to struggle, but showed signs of improvement late in the game. Hopefully they can tighten up any loose screws and come back strong next week.