Monday, December 8, 2008

Black Beltway

It is often said that the best pitchers in baseball will find a way to beat you even when they don’t have their A-game. Well, if ever that could be said about a football team, it could be said about the Ravens last night as they beat the Washington Redskins, 24-10.

It’s true, the Ravens didn’t play all that great. Joe Flacco only threw for 134 yards, including a TD and an INT. Excluding the 8-minute drive in the 4th quarter when Le’Ron McClain pounded the ball down the Redskins throat, the Ravens had trouble running the ball. The wide-receivers dropped too many passes. And special teams kept committing penalties to back up the offense.

But, the defense played extremely well, holding the Redskins to only 254 yards of offense and forced the Skins into four turnovers. More importantly, they created 2 turnovers within the first five minutes of the game to give the Ravens an almost instant 14-0 lead.

And that made the game somewhat anticlimactic. The Redskins were visiting Baltimore for the first time in Ravens history, and Baltimore fans still hold a massive grudge toward the Redskins for former-owner Jack Kent Cooke trying to force his team on Baltimore. So fans were amped up to get their revenge. And there were a lot of Redskins fans in the crowd, but the fast 14-0 lead kept them silent.

But M&T was rocking last night despite the freezing cold temperature and wind. Take a look at this Redskins forum thread about how Skins fans are jealous of the Ravens home field advantage and calling for a new stadium even though FedEx Field is barely 10 years old. It’s good for a laugh.

Hopefully M&T will remain rocking when the Pittsburgh Steelers come to town next week. The Ravens will need the 12th man more than ever to beat the Steelers who despite not playing extremely well, keeps finding ways to win. They came back from a 13-3 deficit with seven minutes left to defeat the Cowboys last night, 20-13. They are still a game up on the Ravens for first place and have won the first two games of their difficult 4-game stretch. The last two: @ BAL, @ TEN.

But last night the Ravens dominated the Redskins in a game where they didn’t play that well. So imagine what it’ll be like when they are running on all cylinders. Hopefully they will be next week.

No comments: