Sunday, January 10, 2010

Ravens Score Two Touchdowns in First Four Minutes Against New England to Advance in the Playoffs

Terrell Suggs had a miserable 2009 season, but what play better defined the Ravens slaughter of the New England Patriots better than the number he laid on Tom Brady forcing a turnover shortly on New England's first offensive drive? Well if you were late getting in front of the television that would make sense but the Ravens were already in business thanks to the long scoring drive Ray Rice cut lose 83 yard run for a touchdown in the first minute of play. That plus playing one tough running game gives Rice the game ball, but it was an all-out team effort, and of course, Ed Reed got a red hot interception with a nice long return too. Sure, the Ray Lewis was right in the heart of the action laying four tackles and nine assists. If no one heard the name, Derrick Mason, so what? For the record, Mason did have one reception for eight yards in a game with just four receipts for a total of just 34 yards from the air attack. The Ravens were taking strength to weakness, their running game against a weak New England running attack. In the Arctic cold, catching a football is like standing in front of a flying rock.

The Ravens played a vicious dominant game on both sides of the ball and special teams did what they had to do as well. Chris Carr provided a 34 yard punt return. Four minutes into the game, the Ravens were up fourteen zippo and New England barely showed signs of life through out this modern day Boston Massacre.

No doubt, the Patriots spin machine will make excuses about missing Wes Welker, Brady not being 100%, and the whole string section of the Boston Pops will play the violin for their team. The Ravens aren’t exactly strangers to the trainer’s room either with Joe Flacco himself dealing with an assortment of ailments as were a number of the team’s clutch players. The bottom line is the Ravens were ahead 24 to 0 at the end of the first quarter making it a long cold afternoon for the fans in Foxboro.

Today’s game is one of historical achievement for the Baltimore Ravens. The Patriots have one of the best home records in football and have never lost a home game in the post season under the Belichick/Brady era. While no one predicted the Patriots would massacre the Ravens, the sports media, local and national, almost universally picked New England unless playing the role of the ultimate Baltimore homer. Still, based on how the Ravens played New England earlier and all things considered, it was a good matchup, but no one would have predicted the Ravens could have blown out the mighty Patriots.

It’s on to Indianapolis. It will be interesting to see how Saturday night’s matchup will be predicted. For so many reasons beyond being a Ravens fans, it’s time for Indianapolis to go down.

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