Sunday, November 28, 2010

Ravens Report-Week 12 2010

Last week, the Ravens defeated the Panthers on the road, 37-13. This game was closer than the score shows, because of two late Ravens touchdowns. The game did get too close, but the Ravens eventually came away with the W. The Ravens scored just 30 seconds into the first quarter, when Flacco launched a 56-yarder to T.J. Houshmandzadeh. Billy Cundiff hit his first field goal of the game next, from 22 yards. The Panthers made it a one possession game soon after, when John Kasay hit a 45-yard field goal. But the Ravens closed out the half with 17-3 lead after a Ray Rice rushing touchdown. The teams exchanged field goals in the third quarter, Cundiff hitting from 33 yards and Kasay from 40. Then the Panthers tried to make this a ball game. Brian St. Pierre threw to David Gettis for an 88-yard touchdown to make the score 20-13. The Ravens responded though, when Billy Cundiff hit yet another field goal, a season-long 49-yarder. This is when the fun began for the Ravens defense. First, Ed Reed picked off St. Pierre and pitched to Dawan Landry who ran it in for a touchdown. On the very next play for Carolina, Ray Lewis stepped in front of the pass and ran it back for a TD to seal the win. The last two touchdowns were scored in just 11 seconds.
Player of the Game: Ravens QB Joe Flacco-24-33, 301 passing yards, 1 passing touchdown
Congratulations to these Ravens who reached career milestones last week in Carolina:
WR T.J. Houshmandzadeh-600th career catch
WR Derrick Mason-900th career catch
S Ed Reed-50th career interception
QB Joe Flacco-Tied Vinny Testaverde for most touchdown passes in Ravens history (51)
LB Ray Lewis-30th career interception

This week's game will showcase two 7-3 teams looking to achieve elite status in the NFL, when the Ravens host the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The Buccaneers have the youngest team in the NFL, and being 7-3 surprised everyone after a horrendous 3-13 finish last season. While their turnaround is commendable, they have yet to beat a team with a winning record, and all three of their losses have been to teams who have winning records. Rookie RB LeGarrette Blount has become the starter and has since rushed for 4 touchdowns and over 400 yards, so watch out for the matchup between Blount and Ray Lewis. Another Bucs rookie, WR Mike Williams, leads NFL rookies with 681 receiving yards and 6 touchdowns. But as explosive as their offense can be, their defense has been lacking, giving up close to 350 yards per game on average. Flacco will have to look out for the Tampa's corners though, as Ronde Barber and Aqib Talib lead a talented secondary. Ray Rice will look to have a field day, as he will be running against the 29th ranked Buccaneers rush defense. I think that the Ravens experience on both sides of the ball will trump the Buccaneers youth, and the Ravens will go to 8-3 with a 24-13 win.
Key Matchups for Buccaneers at Ravens
Ravens LB Ray Lewis vs. Buccaneers RB LeGarrette Blount Edge: Lewis
Ravens S Ed Reed vs. Buccaneers QB Josh Freeman Edge: Reed
Ravens LT Marshal Yanda vs. Buccaneers DT Gerald McCoy Edge: McCoy
Ravens WR Anquan Boldin vs. Buccaneers CB Aqib Talib Edge: Boldin

Injury Report
G Chris Chester-Illness-QST
TE Ed Dickson-Thigh-QST
DE Cory Redding-Arm-QST
S Tom Zbikowski-Foot-QST
S Ed Reed-Illness-PRB
DE Kyle Moore-Shoulder-OUT

AFC North Standings
Team W L GB
Ravens 7 3 --
Steelers 7 3 --
Browns 3 7 4
Bengals 2 9 5.5

That's it for this week's version of my Ravens Report, see ya next week and Go Ravens!


steev said...

Does seem that the opportunity for Rice this week will be great, and we all hope he has a a season-high game. A win at this point in the season will mean much to the team and the fans: an 8-3 record (and don't forget the Steelers are playing Buffalo, so for them 8-3 is a given); beating a 7-3 team, no matter the reasons for their unexpected record; and momentum going into a difficult month. Looking forward to a fun game and a not too difficult win.

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