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Old 12-17-2013, 01:50 AM   #31
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Default Re: Lions and Ratbirds game

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It's destiny. Ray Lewis must have murdered someone else.
This post needs to be bumped.
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Old 12-17-2013, 11:07 AM   #32
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Default Re: Lions and Ratbirds game

Ravens winning puts a lot of playoff possibilities in play

Miami already beat Cincy this year. Which means that if the Ravens and Dolphins both win out, those two teams and the Bengals would all be 10-6. The Ravens would sneak past Cincy for the AFC North title and the Dolphins would hop the Bengals in the AFC Wild Card race. So that's great news and absolutely terrifying news for Andy Dalton and Co.

http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/eye-on-...ootball-legend

So Bengals could get a bye if the Ravens beat Pats and Cincy wins out - but if Ravens beat Pats and then Cincy loses to Ravens the Bengals could be out
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Old 12-17-2013, 01:48 PM   #33
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Default Re: Lions and Ratbirds game

I love me some Raven slob-jobs (especially since the Baltimore Sun's Jamison Hensley joined ESPN.com)

Ravens Primed For Another Surprising Run

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A month ago, I was convinced the Baltimore Ravens
weren't going to make the playoffs. Now, after another can't-believe-it-until-you-see-it moment, I wouldn't be shocked if the Ravens marched to another Super Bowl.

I'm not saying the Ravens are the NFL's best team. Heck, I can't say they're a consistent team. But, when the game is on the line, there is no team I trust more in the NFL right now than the defending Super Bowl champions.

The Ravens' thrilling 18-16 win over the Detroit Lions on "Monday Night Football" provided further evidence that no situation is too unnerving and no stage is too big. Baltimore has gone from a down-and-out, 4-6 team to a suddenly hot, 8-6 team because it believes anything is possible.

Just think about it: The Ravens control their fate in the playoffs and the AFC North because of the right leg of Justin Tucker and their one-legged quarterback. Obviously hurt by a hit to his left knee earlier in the fourth quarter, Joe Flacco completed a 27-yard pass on third-and-15 off his back foot to get the Ravens in range for a winning field goal. Tucker then booted a franchise-record 61-yarder with 38 seconds to lift the Ravens to another improbable victory.

"The thing I love about our football team is that we are a team of faith," coach John Harbaugh said. "We believe. We trust. Because of that, we'll fight. We will run the race right down to the end. That's something that our football team does. I'm very proud of them for that."

There are times when special moments define special teams, just like the times when the Ravens converted the fourth-and-29 in San Diego and delivered the Mile High Miracle last season. These Ravens are building quite a portfolio of "never say never" moments.

Two weeks ago, the Ravens beat the Pittsburgh Steelers, 22-20, by stopping a two-point conversion with 1:03 remaining. Last week, the Ravens outlasted the Minnesota Vikings, 29-26, by scoring three touchdowns in the final 2:05, including the winning 9-yard touchdown pass to Marlon Brown with 4 seconds left.

On Monday, the Ravens won for the third straight week on a play in the final 63 seconds. What separates the Ravens from the likes of the Lions at this pressure-filled time of the year is experience.

"We don't panic. We don't let the situation get too big," Flacco said after his fourth game-winning drive of the season. "I wish it wasn't like that, that we wouldn't have to continue to play these types of games. But we've played a lot of them. We're used to having to make plays in crunch time when you're down a couple of points or up by a couple of points. We've played in a lot of big-time games and a lot of big-time atmospheres. Everybody knows how to handle them pretty well."

The Ravens aren't in the same league as the Seattle Seahawks or Denver Broncos in terms of offensive efficiency. Flacco and the Ravens didn't even get the ball in the end zone Monday night.

This defense can't be mentioned in the same breath as the ones in Kansas City or Carolina. That was evident after the Ravens failed to finish off a team again in the fourth quarter, giving up a go-ahead touchdown with 2:21 left in the game.

Where the Ravens rank among the NFL's best is finding a way to win, however dire the circumstance. It hasn't been that way all year for the Ravens, who lost three of their first four games decided by three points or less. Now, after Monday night's comeback, the Ravens have won four of their past five games by that same margin.

In order to gauge the confidence of the Ravens right now, you just had to be on their sideline in the final two minutes of the game when they stared at a 16-15 deficit. With the Ravens at the Lions' 45-yard line, Tucker told Harbaugh, "I got it."

As Tucker summed it up after the game, "The word 'can't' is not one that we're about, especially in this month of December."

The only aspect more surprising than how the Ravens are winning is who is helping them do it. On Monday night, the Ravens got an interception from 315-pound backup defensive lineman DeAngelo Tyson in the third quarter that stopped the Lions from kicking a field goal and led to another Tucker kick. Then, after Tucker's 61-yarder in the fourth quarter, the Lions' final drive ended with the first career interception for Matt Elam, who took heat all week for calling wide receiver Calvin Johnson "pretty old."

"I don't know how many tight games we've been in or came down to the offense having to make a play or the defense having to stop the other team," cornerback Jimmy Smith said, "but we are coming through at the right time."

As a result, the Ravens maintained control of the No. 6 seed in the AFC and closed to one game of the AFC North-leading Cincinnati Bengals. Baltimore can win the division for a third straight year if it beats the New England Patriots and the Bengals in the final two weeks. A loss, though, could bounce the Ravens from the playoffs.

There's no margin for error for the Ravens, but as the football world witnessed last night, that's probably how these Ravens like it anyway.
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Old 12-17-2013, 01:52 PM   #34
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Default Re: Lions and Ratbirds game

More slobbering at ESPN (this time from Kevin Seifert)

John Harbaugh Takes The Road Less Traveled

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Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh straddled the line between brilliance and dumb luck Monday night.

The clock showed less than a minute remaining. The Ravens trailed the Detroit Lions by one point and their offense was situated on the far outskirts of place-kicker Justin Tucker's range.

What did Harbaugh do? He decided that the Ravens' best chance to win, and to keep alive their playoff hopes, was to play for one of the longest game-winning field goals in NFL history. So from the Lions' 45-yard line, and to the chagrin of quarterback Joe Flacco, the Ravens ran two safe passes and then a draw on third-and-10 that gained 2 yards.

Out went Tucker -- who moments earlier had emboldened Harbaugh by telling him, "I've got this" -- to attempt a 61-yard field goal. There had been only three instances in league history of a successful go-ahead kick from at least 60 yards with less than a minute remaining in the fourth quarter. It's true that Tucker is the NFL's hottest kicker, but that was secondary to the enormity of the moment.

To salvage a win, Harbaugh needed Tucker to do nothing less than catapult into the league's record book. Tucker made him look brilliant, sneaking the ball inside the right upright for an 18-16 Ravens victory that turned both the AFC and NFC playoff races upside down.

"I was confident," Harbaugh said. "I thought we had a real good shot at it."

If anyone had a shot, of course, it was Tucker. He has the NFL's longest streak of consecutive field goals (33) and had accounted for all 15 of the Ravens' points up until then. He has been accurate from long distance this season, converting six kicks from at least 50 yards. And testing his range before the game, Tucker hit the crossbar from 70 yards -- just missing an ESPN camera perched on it.

As soon as the Ravens moved the ball into Lions territory, Tucker positioned himself close to Harbaugh "just in case he looked my way," he said.

"I wanted him to know, just by looking at me, that he shouldn't have any reservations about sending me out there," Tucker said.

As the Ravens faced third-and-10, Harbaugh asked Tucker, "Are we kicking this or are we going for it [if there is a] fourth-and-10?"

Tucker responded: "I got this," and so the Ravens ran that seemingly head-scratching draw play. It's one thing to have confidence in a hot kicker. It's another to attempt a long kick when you simply run out of time to get closer. But that's an altogether different approach from settling ahead of time for a pressure-packed kick from such an unlikely distance.

After all, there have been only three field goals in the long and winding history of the NFL from the distance (63 yards) that Harbaugh was willing to kick from had the third-down play not gained a yard. There have now been a total of six from at least 61 yards.

As it turned out, Flacco seemed to the feel the same way.

"We probably settled a little bit," he said. "I don't like to do that. We would probably admit to that, that we probably settled a little bit. [But we] had confidence that he was going to hit the kick."

Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith concurred. "We had complete faith in our team and complete faith he was going to make it," Smith said.

We like to think there is a right and wrong answer for every coaching decision in sports. We obsess over black and white, but in the heat of a playoff race, Harbaugh surveyed the gray in between. He put statistics and probability aside and made a judgment based on knowing his players and their potential for maximum performance.

The Ravens hadn't scored a touchdown in the game. The Lions' defense had been getting after Flacco, who took a helmet to the knee in the fourth quarter, and in all reality Tucker was Harbaugh's best offensive weapon.

It helps that Tucker is a delightfully even-keeled personality who felt compelled, first and foremost, to joke Monday night about his impact on fantasy football playoffs. He doesn't appear to be a person easily affected by pressure.

"I'm glad to come through of course for my reality team but also for all my fantasy owners," he said amid a flurry of postgame interviews.

Tucker will get plenty of attention in the coming days, but to me it was Harbaugh who faced the most intense pressure. Tucker wouldn't have been the goat had the ball fallen short or sailed wide. Harbaugh would have taken the criticism for his endgame approach. Brilliance? Dumb luck? It worked, and I suppose that's the only thing that matters.
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Old 12-17-2013, 02:08 PM   #35
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Default Re: Lions and Ratbirds game

They slobber over Romo all the time, don't mean sheeeeet
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Old 12-17-2013, 02:11 PM   #36
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Default Re: Lions and Ratbirds game

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I love me some Raven slob-jobs (especially since the Baltimore Sun's Jamison Hensley joined ESPN.com)
Typical sports writing front running - this week the themes are the Pats cannot win without Gronk and the Ravens are back

If the Pats beat the Ravens on Sunday the themes will be Belichick & Brady do not need anyone else to win and the Ravens cannot expect to win without a running game as they kick FGs rather than score TDs in the red zone

Since I do believe in the concept of the breaks evening out I do not expect the Ravens good fortune with last second wins the past two weeks to continue into February
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Old 12-17-2013, 02:33 PM   #37
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Default Re: Lions and Ratbirds game

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They slobber over Romo from August until November, don't mean sheeeeet
Fixed
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Old 12-17-2013, 06:38 PM   #38
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Default Re: Lions and Ratbirds game

A few thoughts about this game:

1. If the game is outdoors, no way do the Ravens attempt a 61-yd FG, nor does Tucker make it. That's what DET gets for not using the elements to their advantage.

2. Detroit = Dallas North or Dallas = Detroit South?

3. Nobody lives and dies by the PI like Flacco.

4. It's too bad the Ravens didn't have Tucker in the 2012 AFCCG...
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Old 12-17-2013, 06:52 PM   #39
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3. Nobody lives and dies by the PI like Flacco.
Not to mention the non-calls the defense gets.



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4. It's too bad the Ravens didn't have Tucker in the 2012 AFCCG...
Billy who?
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Old 12-17-2013, 07:08 PM   #40
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Default Re: Lions and Ratbirds game

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Not to mention the non-calls the defense gets.


I'm willing to overlook that 'non-call'.

The Ravens were still down and needed to drive a long distance to attempt a GW FG. And if DET wanted to be up by more then they shouldn't have played like crap for 58 minutes.

What isn't forgivable are defense forgetting to have safety help deep or not preaching to their guys to avoid contact vs. Flacco WRs.

Chucking the ball deep is any QB's bread and butter. For Flacco it's his bread, butter, meat, potatoes, gravy, dessert and midnight snack.

How stupid can DBs be when they decide to make contact against his targets???

And screw the league for allowing this '500' mockery. [/rant]
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