Quick Take: Broncos-Ravens

In Brief

» Last meeting: In a defensive struggle, the Broncos outlasted the Ravens and earned a 13-3 victory in Week 5 of the 2006 season.
» Streaks: The teams have split six regular-season meetings, but the Ravens won the only playoff encounter en route to a Super Bowl XXXV championship.
» Last week: Both teams were on byes.

Keep your eye on ...Elvis' sack dance: After struggling in recent seasons, Denver's defense has turned it around in 2009. The unit ranks first in the AFC and Elvis Dumervil is one of the biggest reasons for that success. He leads the league with 10 sacks. Baltimore's offensive line, which has allowed seven sacks in its last three games, must keep Dumervil from getting into the backfield and roughing up Joe Flacco.

The chess match between coaches: This is the rare game in which both teams are coming off a bye and have had two weeks to prepare. Each coach -- Denver's Josh McDaniels and Baltimore's John Harbaugh -- has had ample time to craft a game plan, but which head man has devised a better one?

Ed Reed's impact: Reed is one of the league's best players at goading quarterbacks into mistakes. On the other hand, Broncos QB Kyle Orton has taken extraordinary care of the football this season, with his only turnover coming on a desperation heave toward the end zone as time expired in the first half against New England. If Reed is able to bait Orton into an uncharacteristic miscue, the Ravens' chances improve significantly.

Did you know?

The Broncos are going for their first 7-0 start since 1998. ... Denver has a 15-5 all-time mark after a bye. ... Since 2002, Reed leads the NFL with 45 interceptions. ... Flacco has thrown at least one touchdown in six straight games.

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.