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Old 01-16-2011, 12:37 AM   #1
mesaSteeler
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Default Ravens at a loss to explain how Brown got so open on 3rd-and-19

baltimoresun.com
http://www.baltimoresun.com/sports/r...90,print.story
Ravens at a loss to explain how Brown got so open on 3rd-and-19
Players don't question choice to blitz only three players, say Steelers just made a play

By Kevin Van Valkenburg, The Baltimore Sun

10:42 PM EST, January 15, 2011

For all the drama in the second half, for all the turnovers and penalties and dropped passes, the Ravens defense actually had the Steelers in a difficult spot with 2:13 remaining in the game Saturday.

Pittsburgh had the ball near midfield in a tie game, but Cory Redding and Paul Kruger sacked Ben Roethlisberger for a 9-yard loss on first down, putting the Steelers in a serious hole. Roethlisberger threw an incomplete pass on second down. Facing a 3rd-and-19, all the Ravens needed to do was come up with one more pass rush or deflection and they'd get the ball back with a chance to win the game.

Instead, Roethlisberger managed to torment the Ravens yet again, lofting a perfect pass to Antonio Brown for a 58-yard completion down the sideline. It was a stunning turn of events, and after the game, the Ravens were still struggling to explain exactly how it happened.

Why, in a obvious prevent defense, was Brown able to get behind cornerback Lardarius Webb? And why, when the Ravens were getting pressure on Roethlisberger throughout the night, did they decide to rush only three lineman on what turned out to be the most important play of the game?

"Our philosophy all year has been 'Don't let the ball get thrown over your head,' " said linebacker Terrell Suggs. "In the prevent defense we were in, on 3rd-and-19, we can give up 18. We can get off the field and give our offense a chance to win the game. But I don't know what happened. I don't know what went on back there."

Webb didn't have much of an explanation either. Brown simply ran a go route and ran right by one of the fastest players the Ravens have.


"He just ran by me, man," Webb said. "That's it. I wasn't expecting something different. He just ran by me."

Safety Dawan Landry had to pay attention to the slot receiver, and he couldn't get there in time to give Webb help.

"The guy made the catch," Landry said. "You just have to give them credit. You knew they were going to try for the first down. Guy just made a play. It was tough."

Roethlisberger apparently improvised on the play, and opted to chuck it where ball-hawking safety Ed Reed wasn't.

"It was crazy," Roethlisberger said. "I told [Steelers offensive coordinator] Bruce Arians 'Let's send 'em.' All the receivers were supposed to do 15-yard stop routes. [I thought], let's just chuck it deep, if they pick it, it will be a pick way down there. Just as good as a punt. Ed Reed lined up to the left, and that's always a key to find out where he's at and keep the safety in the middle of the field, and I just throw it as far as I can."

There was also an illegal contact penalty called on the Ravens on the play, meaning it would have been a first down regardless, but Brown's catch gave the Steelers the ball at the 4-yard line. Five plays later, Rashad Mendenhall scored what turned out to be the winning touchdown.

So why did the Ravens send only three pass rushers? Because that's the philosophy of Ravens defensive coordinator Greg Mattison, Suggs said. Throughout the season, the Ravens have often decided to drop eight into coverage on plays when the offense needed to pick up a big chunk of yardage. The results, as any Ravens fan can attest, have been mixed.

"We were totally confident that our three-man rush would get there," said Suggs, who had three sacks and a forced-fumble that resulted in a touchdown. "That's what we wanted to do."

Ravens coach John Harbaugh said the three-man rush was ultimately irrelevant.

"I just think they made a great play over the top," Harbaugh said. "It was a great throw. They ran a nice route, got behind us, obviously, and made a play. It's going to happen sometimes. I thought our secondary played well the whole game. I don't have a problem with any individual performances. Our guys were battling out there. That's what you ask for."

So did Harbaugh agree with rushing only three in that situation? According to the coach, Roethlisberger would have gotten the ball out against any number of rushers.

"The ball would have been out either way," Harbaugh said. "That was a pretty quick throw. I don't think it would have mattered how many guys we brought in that particular situation. I thought we had good pressure. We had six sacks. We had a bunch of knockdowns. These are two teams that play great defense, so I don't think pressure was the problem."

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said there was no primary receiver on the play; it was just typical Roethlisberger. When it comes to those situations, especially against the Ravens, he manages to do something special for his team.

"It's not always how you draw it up, but he has a no-blink mentality," Tomlin said. "He is a competitor and winner. And those guys follow him. On 3rd-and-20 there is no such thing as a primary guy. Hopefully someone down the field will get open and [Brown] was."

kevin.vanvalkenburg@baltsun.com

twitter.com/KVanValkenburg
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Old 01-16-2011, 12:41 AM   #2
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Default Re: Ravens at a loss to explain how Brown got so open on 3rd-and-19

Tomlin and Colbert hit the jackpot with this year's draft. Pouncey, Brown, and Sanders will be stars in this league.
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Old 01-16-2011, 12:45 AM   #3
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Default Re: Ravens at a loss to explain how Brown got so open on 3rd-and-19

we can only hope
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Old 01-16-2011, 12:54 AM   #4
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Default Re: Ravens at a loss to explain how Brown got so open on 3rd-and-19

I've watched that play at least 10 times and I'm still shocked that he burned them for 58 while they were playing a deep prevent. If I was a Raven fan I'd still be in the bathroom puking after that 2nd half today.
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Old 01-16-2011, 12:58 AM   #5
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Default Re: Ravens at a loss to explain how Brown got so open on 3rd-and-19

It was good hustle on Antonio's part to get open and he showed nice hands to hold on to it. Brown's mostly been on the field for returns this year but I think he could be a nice receiver in his own right. Not sure if he'll be a star but he's shown himself thus far to be a possible steal. Seems like a good guy too. Story I read has him saying he's thankful for the catch. No diva attitude like I see from many wideouts but a guy who made a great play and yet isn't an arrogant sob about it. May sound a little silly but in a way I was glad he didn't get the TD. Remember that triggered the two minute warning and the Ravens would then have to start burning timeouts. It's definitely going to be a catch be remembered.
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Old 01-16-2011, 01:17 AM   #6
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Default Re: Ravens at a loss to explain how Brown got so open on 3rd-and-19

Quote:
Originally Posted by GMU Steeler View Post
It was good hustle on Antonio's part to get open and he showed nice hands to hold on to it. Brown's mostly been on the field for returns this year but I think he could be a nice receiver in his own right. Not sure if he'll be a star but he's shown himself thus far to be a possible steal. Seems like a good guy too. Story I read has him saying he's thankful for the catch. No diva attitude like I see from many wideouts but a guy who made a great play and yet isn't an arrogant sob about it. May sound a little silly but in a way I was glad he didn't get the TD. Remember that triggered the two minute warning and the Ravens would then have to start burning timeouts. It's definitely going to be a catch be remembered.
nice hands and helmet too

I like brown and sanders, two rookies with speed and good hands....and obviously not afraid to be called on for the big play.
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Old 01-16-2011, 01:19 AM   #7
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Default Re: Ravens at a loss to explain how Brown got so open on 3rd-and-19

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nice hands and helmet too

I like brown and sanders, two rookies with speed and good hands....and obviously not afraid to be called on for the big play.
Yeah I liked how Antonio held the ball to his helmet after he caught it. He wasn't showboating like some others may have after the catch. I like them both too by the way. They've both got the potential to be good players. After the Sweed pick a few years back, I think our scouting on wideouts has much improved.
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Old 01-16-2011, 01:27 AM   #8
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Default Re: Ravens at a loss to explain how Brown got so open on 3rd-and-19

Speed. And yall know, Speed Kills and Speed killed the Ravens today....
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Old 01-16-2011, 02:07 AM   #9
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Default Re: Ravens at a loss to explain how Brown got so open on 3rd-and-19

If he's even, he's leavin.
Thats what Ben said, and he's right, any NFL reciever will beat most corners if they are even before the cornerback has a chance to turn all the way around and run with the reciever.
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Old 01-16-2011, 02:10 AM   #10
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Default Re: Ravens at a loss to explain how Brown got so open on 3rd-and-19

brown's got that 'electric speed'

we have 2 wr's that have 4.4 speed, and wallace who is prolly the 2nd fastest man in the nfl. who do you cover?
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