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NFL Playoff Preview: Ravens At Patriots 2

Posted on January 07, 2010 by Joe Gill

With the loss of Wes Welker, Kevin Faulk will have to be a big contributor in the passing game.

Overview: The Patriots (#3 seed) and Ravens (#6 seed) will meet for the second time this season, but this time it’s for all the marbles in the Wild Card playoffs.

The Patriots are going to try to overcome the devastating injury to their offensive MVP, Wes Welker. Welker tore his ACL and MCL on a routine cut last week in Houston. He will be sidelined for at least six months.

The Ravens are trying to exceed their road success in the playoffs. Last year as the sixth seed, Baltimore beat Miami and Tennessee before succumbing to Pittsburgh, 23-14 in the AFC Championship.

The Ravens will try to pull the upset yet again on the road. They have their work cut out for them, however. New England is 8-0 at home this year and 10-0 in the playoffs since 1978.

Last Week: The Patriots (10-6) fell to the Texans 34-27 in Houston. In a meaningless game, Wes Welker was injured and lost for the year. To add insult to injury, the Patriots blew a 14 point fourth quarter lead to fall to 2-6 on the road.

The Ravens in essence played a playoff game last week versus Oakland. If they win, they are in and they did just that. Baltimore held off a pesky Raiders team, 21-13. The Ravens were led by the rushing attack of Willis McGahee (167 yards and 3 td’s) and Ray Rice (70 yards).

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The Ravens Keep Their Playoff Dreams Alive, As They Devour The Lions 5

Posted on December 15, 2009 by Ryan Heller

 

Ray Rice had a big game on the ground, as he helps the Ravens devour the Lions 48-3.

Ray Rice had a big game on the ground, as he helps the Ravens devour the Lions 48-3.

It was a cold and miserable rainy day in the Charm City, as thousands of fans packed M & T Bank Stadium, to watch the resilient Baltimore Ravens take on the underdog in the Detroit Lions. Even though the Ravens were taking on a deprived Lions team, they still have to watch out for the upset, which would all but ruin the Ravens playoff dreams. The Ravens came into this game with the mentality to not take the Lions lightly, as anything could happen any given Sunday. Lardarius Webb stated it perfectly after the game “It was just hard work all week. We did not take this team lightly. They’re a great team. They play so hard. The way they play doesn’t show in their record.”

 

 

This game was a great game for the Ravens in all phases of the game.  The Ravens showed that they can rebound from a tough loss, which they suffered last Monday night against the Green Bay Packers. The Ravens finally brought out the three headed monster anchored by second year running back Ray Rice, who had a huge game with 219 total yards from scrimmage and a touchdown. The other two parts of the three headed monster Willis McGahee and Le’Ron McClain both had big games, with McGahee running for two touchdowns on 76 total yards and McClain rushing for 32 yards with a touchdown. All together the Ravens three headed monster totaled 327 yards with 4 touchdowns.

The Ravens passing offense looked good in this game also, with big games from Joe Flacco and Derrick Mason. Flacco was barely touched and had plenty of time to throw the ball to the open receiver, in this game he threw for 230 yards with one touchdown. Mason made one of the most sensational play’s I have seen in a while, when he caught the ball and got struck by two Lions players but managed to stay on his feet and run for 62 yards for the touchdown. The Ravens would not of had this much success on offense if it was not for the magnificent play of the offensive line.

The Ravens defense had a great impact to the ending score, as they held the Lions to only a field goal. In this game the Ravens defense showed a lot of toughness. All in all this was a team effort, as each player had their own role to take care of and they did just that.

Even though the Ravens had key injuries entering this game, with the absence of Ed Reed, Mark Clayton, and Jared Gaither, they still found a way to win the game. The weather was a big factor in the game, as in the first quarter of the game Ray Rice fumbled the ball into the end zone that would be a touchback for the Lions, but the Ravens and Rice would rebound from that and have a record breaking day.

As I was in attendance I show in person the impact of the weather and the success the Ravens had on all sides of the football. If the Ravens can play like what I seen in this game, than the Ravens should soar into the playoffs. The Ravens performance in this game, showed that they still have a lot of pride and fight left in them, so that should go a long way for the rest of the Ravens season.

After The Ravens Fall To The Packers, The Ravens Must Move Forward 2

Posted on December 10, 2009 by Ryan Heller
Joe Flacco was on the run the whole game, as the Ravens fall to the Packers.

Joe Flacco was on the run the whole game, as the Ravens fell to the Packers.

This game was disappointing in many different ways for the Baltimore Ravens, it seems like the Ravens did not bring their a-game, as they were taken down by the Green Bay Packers. The first disappointing aspect of this game is that this was a must win game and the Ravens did not play like they can and needed too in order to get the win. The second is the Ravens did not play hard or with a sense of urgency. The third is the Ravens could not seem to get their running game going, as it was a non factor versus the Packers. The fourth is the Ravens did not play as physical on defense as they can, which is what the Ravens are known for. The fifth and final is that the Ravens let down a lot of people, mainly including the fans from the charm city, who are so passionate about their Ravens.

Let’s take a look at the defining moments of this game; the Ravens were shut out in the first half of the game. The Ravens did not get on the scoreboard in till late in the third quarter. The Ravens scored a touchdown when Kelly Washington caught a pass from Joe Flacco, the Ravens would score another touchdown in a matter of thirty seconds, when Willis McGahee ran the ball into the end zone. Both of these touchdowns were aided by penalties from the Packers, the Ravens would not score for the rest of the game. The Ravens would get in the red zone, but could not seem to get any points, as Flacco would throw an interception.

In this game the Ravens looked like they were not even trying. The Ravens could not seem to get a good rhythm on offense, as they were slow to get out the huddle and slow to get the play started. Another thing I noticed about the Ravens in this game is that they were playing like a team that does not want to make it too the playoffs. Some of the good things about this game are the Ravens defense was playing better as the game went on, but it was some mental issues that kept the Ravens from putting the ball into the end zone. This game was played as a team, so the Ravens lost as a team.

After watching this game, the Ravens showed me that they are not ready to make a playoff push. If they don’t start playing hard and wanting to win, than they will not get a taste of the playoffs this season. The upcoming schedule has a couple of lenient games, as the Ravens play a home game versus the Detroit Lions next week, the Chicago Bears  at home the following week, and  the Oakland Raiders on the road in the final game of the season. The Ravens still have a very meaningful divisional game against the Pittsburgh Steelers on the road in the game before the last game of the season; the Ravens already got the best of the Steelers in the last game they played together. The Ravens still have a legit chance of making the playoffs.

If the Ravens cannot start winning in these last couple of games, than they will be watching the playoffs from home. Personally I know that the Ravens can turn things around, if they can just play with more intensity and a type of urgency to win, than they should be able to get the job done. I know the talent is there for the Ravens, they just need to act like every game is a must win and stop taking teams lightly. I am the first person to tell you that the Ravens are not playing the best that they are capable of, but it’s nothing that cannot be fixed. Being a passionate fan of the Ravens, it hurts to see them lose these heartbreaking games week after week. So for the last four weeks of the season, the Ravens look to string together a couple of wins, if they can accomplish that, than they should be in good shape to make it into the playoffs.

Just like me, there are many fans that want to see the Ravens make it into the playoffs.

Ravens Vs. Packers Preview 10

Posted on December 06, 2009 by Ryan Heller
The Ravens And The Packers Face Off In A Monday Night Showdown

The Ravens And The Packers Face Off In A Monday Night Showdown

Going into this game the Baltimore Ravens know that this is going to be a tough game versus the Green Bay Packers. If you have been following the NFL this season you already know that the Packers have one of the best defenses in the NFL. The Ravens are built for these types of games, so the Ravens should use that as a key part of their game plan for the Packers.

A thing to look at in this game is if the Ravens can play consistent in all phases of the game. Also the matchup of two of the top defenses in the NFL. So this should be a great game to watch when Monday Night Football comes on. This is going to be a low scoring game; it’s probably going to be a similar game to the one that the Ravens played last week.

The Ravens need to win this game, as it seems like every time the Ravens get a big win they seem to lose the next game or two. I think the reason for that is the Ravens think that they are going to win, so they take teams lightly. They cannot take the Packers lightly or they are going to be in serious trouble.

Even though the Packers have one of the best defenses in the NFL, the Ravens still have one of the top defenses and they still have the most physical defense in the NFL. This is going to be another bitter cold Lambeau showdown. If you are a football fan than you are going to get a early Christmas present, so get ready to tighten your chin strap and open your present.

In this game the Ravens need to obtain a physical running game, because they are very successful when they get their running game going. If the Ravens defense show’s up in this game, than they should be in good shape to get a big win on the road and keep their playoff hopes alive. The Ravens are going to try and go in this game and hit the Packers in their mouth, with Ravens style defense. The Ravens need to try to get the momentum on their sides early in the game to make a statement to the Packers, to let them know that they are going to have to fight for sixty minutes.

If the Ravens can stick to this game plan then they should be able to give the fans from the charm city something to cheer about. If the Ravens can come away with the win, than they can show the NFL that they are for real and that they can compete with the elite teams in the NFL. 

An Overtime Thriller In Charm City 4

Posted on November 30, 2009 by Ryan Heller
Baltimore Ravens kicker Billy Cundiff and holder Sam Koch watch Cundiff's game-winning field goal in overtime to beat the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Baltimore Ravens kicker Billy Cundiff and holder Sam Koch watch Cundiff's game-winning field goal in overtime to beat the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Coming in to this game the Baltimore Ravens are in a must win situation after they lost a nail biter versus the Indianapolis Colts, which was part one of the must wins. The Ravens showed that they still can put pressure on the quarterback, as the Ravens made Peyton Manning throw two interceptions. But that does not matter, as the Ravens lost that game. The Ravens put that aside as they take on their most hated rivals the Pittsburgh Steelers.

You already know this is going to be a hard hitting game, as each and every time the Ravens and Steelers meet it is a smash mouth football game. This game is the prime example of a rival. If you are a football fan than you know what I am talking about.

Now let’s take a look at the most recent installment of the Ravens and Steelers intense rivalry. Coming into this game the Ravens were looking for a win to help get them back into playoff contention. The Ravens started the game on a fast pace, they let the Steelers have the ball first so that they could she how the first time starter Dennis Dixon would act in this type of environment , the Steelers went three and out. The Ravens got the ball on offense and took it down the field in calm manner; as they ran the ball hard and threw the ball with pure force as they went on to score a touchdown on Willis McGahee’s hard run up through the middle of the Steelers defense. For the rest of the first quarter it was just defense as each team had to punt the ball.

The second quarter started with a disappointing touchdown by the Steelers. The Ravens would answer back with a touchdown of their own, as Joe Flacco and company had a flawless drive ending with a floating pass hauled in by Derrick Mason. The third quarter did not have that much action, as the Steelers inched closer with a field goal. Now the excitement starts as the fourth quarter is about to begin.

The fourth quarter starts with another Steelers touchdown; this one was fatal as it gave the Steelers the lead. The Ravens would tie the game, as the Ravens got deep in their own territory and then on fourth down the Ravens Coach John Harbaugh made a gutsy call and went for it on fourth and five. The Ravens would convert it, as Rice would run for forty-four yards deep into Steelers territory.  The game got crazy as in the closing seconds of the game the Ravens kicker Billy Cundniff tried to win the game on a fifty-six yard field goal, but came short as Cundniff’s range was only fifty-three yards. The game was tied after regulation forcing overtime.

The OT started with the Steelers receiving the ball, but the Ravens would hold them and force them to punt. The Ravens would get the ball, but would have to punt the ball as well. The game would get very tense, as the Steelers received the punt deep in their own territory. After two plays the Ravens linebacker Paul Kruger would intercept the ball and take it deep into Steelers territory. After a couple of solid runs from Rice, the Ravens would set up the kicking team to try and win the game. As he was kicking the ball the whole city of Baltimore was on the edge of their seats with their hearts beating faster than ever. When the field goal was called good, the Ravens could finally take a breath, as the Ravens took down the arch enemy Pittsburgh Steelers in dramatic fashion.

Baltimore Ravens Release Steve Hauschka 3

Posted on November 17, 2009 by Ryan Heller
The Ravens Part Ways With Steve Hauschka

The Ravens Part Ways With Steve Hauschka

The Baltimore Ravens finally got rid of kicker Steve Hauschka after he missed a couple of key field goals during the season.

So the Ravens hope to get someone that can make some big field goals in the near future.

This was a good move for the Ravens as they get ready to face the Colts and the Steelers in the next two games.

Both of the games are going to make or break the Ravens season. these games are going to be close and probably will come down to a field goal in the closing seconds.

So we will see what kicker the Ravens will sign in the next couple of days. The Ravens won’t get another Matt Stover, they can only hope to get a kicker that can even come close to Stover.

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