- The Washington Times - Sunday, October 1, 2017

BALTIMORE — Ravens offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg recalled telling his players following a lopsided loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars that if they weren’t “on” for every single play, there would be a chance they would get slapped around.

The Ravens had a chance to reverse course against the Pittsburgh Steelers, a divisional opponent tied for first place.

Instead, the Ravens got slapped again, losing in another one-sided affair to the Steelers, 26-9.

In the final minutes of Sunday’s loss, Steelers fans at M&T Bank Stadium were waving their “Terrible Towels” while purple-clad Baltimore fans scrambled for the exit. Outside the Steelers end zone in the final 10 seconds, the Ravens offense couldn’t even manage a garbage time touchdown.

Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco faced pressure all day, throwing two more interceptions — both in the fourth quarter.

Flacco, who managed to throw for 235 yards, was sacked four times. The Steelers dominated time of possession by more than 11 minutes, but the Ravens defense still kept them in the game.

“I sucked,” Flacco said. “It wasn’t good. We’ve got to be better off early in games. … I wasn’t good enough to get us back in the game.”

The Ravens offense managed just two more points than they did in London.

Mornhinweg said Wednesday he needed to take more responsibility in getting the passing game going, particularly in helping Flacco find his wide receivers. Last week, the Ravens completed just two passes to their wide receivers against the Jaguars.

There were plenty of chances, however, for the Ravens’ wideouts, only for the execution to break down. Ravens wide receiver Mike Wallace dropped a 30-yard pass in the second quarter in the second quarter when Baltimore trailed 3-0.

Later on, with the Ravens down 19-0 and in Pittsburgh territory, Flacco missed a wide open Bashard Perriman that would have most likely been a touchdown. Instead, Baltimore went three-and-out and settled for a 42-yard field goal. They couldn’t capitalize on a Ben Roethlisberger interception at Pittsburgh’s 18-yard line .

The Ravens trailed all game and didn’t score a touchdown until the third quarter when Flacco connected on a 16-yard pass to Wallace.

“We just have to improve,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. “You’re not going to make a bunch of changes; you just have to improve. There were some flashes in there and we have to build on those things. It’s a process.”

In all facets of the offense, Baltimore failed to generate much against the Steelers’ defense.

Running back Alex Collins committed a costly fumble in the second quarter, leading to the Steelers’ first touchdown.It was Collins’ second of the season and fourth in two years.

Collins had a game-long 50-yard run, which led to the Ravens’ only touchdown, but Harbaugh said the running back would be on a short leash in the future. Harbaugh started Collins on Sunday instead of Terrance West.

Collins, who ran for 82 yards on nine carries, said he won’t dwell on the mistake.

“Most of the time fumbles happen when you’re not thinking about ball security and you’re worried about the play itself,” he said.

Pittsburgh, meanwhile, entered Sunday’s game with offensive struggles of their own. But instead of relying on quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, Le’Veon Bell got 35 carries and the running back delivered with 144 yards and two touchdowns.

The Ravens fell to 2-2 with the loss. Baltimore now moves on to the Oakland Raiders for Week 5 — a game where Baltimore will again have to show something on offense.

A year ago, the Ravens fired former offensive coordinator Marc Trestman after Week 5 and replaced him with Mornhinweg.

The calls for Mornhinweg’s job haven’t started yet, but Flacco knows how the NFL and its fanbase works. He dismissed the need for change.

“Listen, we definitely have the ability to be productive,” Flacco said. “And no matter what anybody thinks, we’re all we have right now, so we’re going to go out there, and we’re going to make it happen.”

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