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Air & Ground Matchup Report: Week 5 vs. Ravens


After back to back losses, the Oakland Raiders will look to get back to their winning ways as they return to the friendly confines of the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum to open a three-game home stand.

The Silver and Black will have their hands full in the first of those three games, as they play host to John Harbaugh, Joe Flacco, and the Baltimore Ravens.

Just like the Raiders, the Ravens enter the Week 5 tilt as losers of back-to-back games, so there's no doubt that Jack Del Rio and Co., are going to get the Ravens best shot Sunday afternoon.

The Ravens have become synonymous with stout defenses, but as of now, Defensive Coordinator Dean Pees' group ranks just No. 21 in overall defense (349.5 YPG). The Silver and Black will try to take advantage of what the Baltimore defense gives them, and taking advantage of those opportunities will be even more critical without the services of quarterback Derek Carr.

Head Coach Del Rio announced Monday that Carr suffered a transverse process fracture in the Week 4 loss to the Denver Broncos, and while the injury isn't thought to be long term, No. 4 will indeed be sidelined against the Ravens.

Enter, EJ Manuel.

The former Buffalo Bill will be at the helm of the Raiders offense Sunday afternoon, a unit that as of now ranks No. 21 in pass offense (201.5 YPG), No. 24 on the ground (86.3 YPG), and No. 28 overall (287.8 YPG).

The Silver and Black's offense has looked a little out of sorts the past two weeks, but one positive for the group is that they are still tied for No. 3 (66.7%) in the league as far as red zone efficiency goes.

With a Ravens defense that has allowed its fair share of big plays in the early stages of 2017, expect Downing to try to take full advantage of any missteps, both with Manuel through the air, and with the team's trio of backs on the ground.

Which Raiders will deliver Air & Ground worthy performances this season? Check to find out, and vote for the weekly FedEx Air & Ground NFL Players of the Week all season long.

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