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Morning take: Is Ravens' D ready?

9/26/2009



Posted by ESPN.com’s James Walker

Here are the most interesting stories Saturday in the AFC North:

  • The Baltimore Ravens' defense is looking to get its swagger back Sunday against the Cleveland Browns.

Morning take: Baltimore’s weakness thus far has been against the pass, but Cleveland’s offense has struggled throwing the football. The Browns could be an ideal match for the Ravens.

  • Will Pittsburgh Steelers tailback Willie Parker have a breakout game on the turf at Paul Brown Stadium?

Morning take: Cincinnati’s surface benefits speedy backs like Parker. The Steelers’ running game improved some from Week 1 to Week 2. So let’s see if the offense continues to take steps forward.

  • Browns defensive coordinator Rob Ryan accepted blame for last week’s 27-6 loss to the Denver Broncos.

Morning take: It's a noble move by Ryan. But the Browns’ offense couldn’t move the football and the defense was on the field 74 plays. The loss to Denver was a team effort.

  • Former NFL quarterback and CBS analyst Phil Simms expects a physical battle between the Cincinnati Bengals and Steelers.

Morning take: This is an important early-season meeting for both teams. I’m also anticipating a closely contested game that could be decided by key plays in the fourth quarter.