Around the AFC North: Post-Week 8 Notes

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Nov 1, 2015; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Ravens kicker Justin Tucker (9) reacts after making the game-winning field goal to beat the San Diego Chargers 29-26 at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Baltimore Ravens (2-6)

What a sad way for Steve Smith to go out. He played his entire career like a warrior and was the ultimate chip-on-his-shoulder kind of player throughout the duration of his career.

But according to multiple reports, Smith could consider returning to action in 2016–likely because he wants to end his career on a high note. But would Smith really end his career on a high note if he tried to make a comeback? Look at Andre Johnson and Reggie Wayne‘s attempts at a last great season; the odds are against Smith if he is really wants to try and revive his career.

On to the Ravens.

Baltimore came out with a nice win against San Diego, riding five Justin Tucker field goals to victory, including a game-winner as time expired. Baltimore’s defense struggled for what seems like the 10th consecutive week, giving up three passing touchdowns, but the Ravens responded on offense, getting in range for Tucker to blast five field goals through the uprights.

Baltimore’s win, however, was too little too late. The Ravens are 2-6; their ceiling for the season has to be around 6-10 or 7-9. It’s sad to see the lack of competition in the division, but it’s at least a little nice for the Bengals that a division rival has been so drastically weakened.

The Ravens will go into the bye week with a lot to work on; the running game has been nice, but it’s hard to find a practical time for Baltimore to run the ball when they’re down so often. And Joe Flacco is desperate for playmaking pass-catchers out wide, especially now that Steve Smith is gone. Breshad Perriman needs to make an impact of some sort to instill at least some kind of confidence in Baltimore.

Ravens: Cheers and Jeers for Week 8 Win (Ebony Bird)

Steve Smith out for season following Achilles tear (Ebony Bird)

Ravens pull off 29-26 victory over Chargers (Baltimore Beatdown)

Steve Smith possibly eyeing return in 2016 (Baltimore Beatdown)

Next: Cleveland Browns