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Denver Broncos v. Baltimore Ravens: Know Thy Enemy

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle” --Sun Tzu

Jeff Gross

Offensive Depth Chart:






Joe Flacco

Tyrod Taylor


Ray Rice

Bernard Pierce


Vonta Leach

Kyle Juszczyk


Ed Dickson

Dallas Clark

Dennis Pitta*

#1 WR

Torrey Smith

Aaron Mellette

Deonte Thompson

#2 WR

Jacoby Jones

Marlon Brown


Brandon Stokley


Bryant McKinnie

Rick Wagner


Kelechi Osemele

Ryan Jensen


Gino Gradkowski

AQ Shipley


Marshal Yanda

Jah Reid


Michael Oher

Rick Wagner


*Pitta will be placed in IR/Designated to return list on Sept. 4th. He had to make the final 53-man roster in order to be eligible.

Offensive Personnel Groups

Base Offense (2-1 Personnel, Conventional)


This personnel Grouping is what I would call the Ravens "Base Offense". Standard two-back set with FB Vonta Leach and RB Ray Rice. Both receivers are Torrey Smith and Jacoby Jones. The TE they will use in this alignment is Ed Dickson. I doubt you will see much of Dallas Clark when they run this personnel grouping. They have another wrinkle using this personnel grouping.

Base Offense (2-1 Personnel, Unconventional)


This slight adjustment substitutes FB Juszczyk for FB Leach and Dallas Clark for Dennis Pitta. First of all notice how Juszczyk is lined up as a receiver. He may be listed as a FB, but the Ravens will move him around and use him more as an H-back type player. With this new group of players, they have 5 legitimate receiving threats out of heavy personnel.

11 Personnel


This grouping isn't necessarily a 3rd down only grouping, though against the Broncos, I would expect them to use this personnel mainly on 3rd downs. If they were to come out of the gates in 11 personnel, the Broncos would likely counter with their nickel defense which I see as a mismatch in the Broncos favor. Clark isn't much of a blocker, and though Stokley is better in that regards, the Ravens aren't going to be able to run consistently or effectively with this personnel. The Broncos strength at the moment is our secondary.

You will always see Dallas Clark here.

Defense Depth Chart






Chris Canty

Marcus Spears

DeAngelo Tyson


Haloti Ngata

Terrence Cody


Arthur Jones

Brandon Williams


Terrell Suggs

Pernell McPhee


Courtney Upshaw

Elvis Dumervil

ILB (Mike)

Daryl Smith

Albert McClellan

ILB (Will)

Josh Bynes

Arthur Brown


Corey Graham

Chykie Brown


Jimmy Smith

Lardarius Webb


James Ihedigbo

Matt Elam


Michael Huff

Anthony Levine

Brynden Trawick

Defensive Personnel Groups

Base Defense (3-4)


This is their run stuffing defense. You will NEVER see Elvis Dumervil in the game in this defense. Upshaw is the key here, he is the defender that the Ravens rely on in the running game to set the edge. He does an excellent job and is difficult to block. Corey Graham and Jimmy Smith project to be the starters in this base defense at cornerback. In nickel situations, Lardarius Webb comes into the game on the outside and Graham kicks back to cover the slot receiver.

Nickel Defense (4-2-5)


This is exactly Broncos like to do in nickel situations on defense. Suggs and Dumervil will be your hand in the dirt rush DE's. Ngata slides over to be the 0/1 tech and Chris Canty becomes a 3-tech. This is a fluid situation. You will see Suggs and Dumervil moved around to both sides. You will also see them stacked from time to time rushing from the same side. Same thing with the DT's. You may see Ngata as a 3-tech.

With the linebackers, starting Mike Daryl Smith stays in the game in a role similar to what Wesley Woodyard will do in nickel situations, and rookie LB Arthur Brown comes in to play the role of Danny Trevathan in coverage.

Dime Defense (4-1-6)

I was not able to find an instance of when they used this defense in the preseason, but this should be simple to recognize. The 3rd safety would be rookie Matt Elam. I suspect that if the Ravens run "Big Nickel" Elam would also be the 3rd safety in coverage.

Stay tuned MHR, more analysis and film breakdown to come! GO BRONCOS!!!