Tag Archives: ravens

Patriots v. Ravens: How They Match Up

After a much deserved Bye Week, the Patriots return to action on Saturday against the pesky Baltimore Ravens in Foxboro. Of course the team from Baltimore is very familiar with Gillette Stadium, especially in the postseason, as they are the only team to ever beat the Patriots there twice in the playoffs. Those wins were in the 2009 and 2012 seasons and Terrell Suggs and the militia of Ravens fans will never let the Patriots forget about those seasons.The Patriots will try to avenge both of those loses, and if they don’t, this season will be considered an enormous failure to the franchise.


Those games will mean nothing when the game starts on Saturday afternoon. Here’s how these two teams matchup:

Rushing Attack: Most people may have assumed that without Ray Rice, the Ravens would struggle with running the ball effectively. In reality, Baltimore has had more rushing yards they they’ve had in 5 season. Justin Forsett has led the way for the Ravens with over 1,000 yards on the season and 8 rushing touchdowns. The New England defense gave up an average of 104 yards per game in the regular season, but that number is a bit inflated due to the terrible start by the club. They gave up 191 rushing yards in week 1, and then in week 4 gave up 207 in the embarrassing Monday Night loss to the Chiefs.

The Patriots Run game has been what we normally expect from the Patriots. Ridley missed more half the year with an injury, and occasionally a running back will have a big game for the Patriots like Jonas Gray against the Colts. As seen during the Green Bay game, if the run doesn’t seem to work early, the Patriots completely abandon it, and go strictly to a passing game.

Advantage: Ravens

Passing Game: Joe Flacco has been known to air the ball out from time to time. He has success with that, and Steve Smith Sr., and Tory Smith are usually on the same page as him. He’s no Peyton Manning or Tom Brady, but he’s proven he can get the job done when it matters. He is not “The best QB in the game” as his coach John Harbaugh claims, but somehow he wins playoff games. He’s thrown for 13 touchdowns and ZERO interceptions in his last 5 playoff games. Those stats are a little scary. As all of Baltimore has tried pointing out to me all week, Flacco also has the most road playoff wins in NFL history. That’s great, but a bit of a deceiving stat, considering great quarterbacks like Peyton and Brady haven’t had the opportunity to play on the road as much because of their regular season dominance.   Read more

Reasons Why You Should Hate the Ravens (In Case You Forgot)

On Saturday afternoon, the football team from Baltimore will come into Gillette Stadium to face the #1 team in the AFC. The Ravens are no strangers to playing in New England during the postseason. In fact they are only one of two opposing teams to win a game at Gillette after week 17, and they’ve done it twice in the past 5 years. If the history between these two teams doesn’t make you hate the Ravens, I can help with why you should hate them.

1.)    Terrell Suggs.


Suggs should be all the reason you need to hate the Baltimore Ravens franchise. He talked a lot of smack about the Patriots on different occasions. If he gets his ass beat by the Patriots he runs his mouth and accuses of them of cheating. If he beats the Patriots, he still runs his mouth in the most unsportsmanlike way.

Of course the Ravens had Ray Rice on this team until the start of the year, but somehow Suggs is still on this roster just because there was no video of him beating a woman. According to a 2009 report from the Baltimore Sun, Suggs beat his now wife on multiple occasions, and the one highlighted by the report detailed how he tried to pour bleach on Candace Williams.

So the lesson here kids is, if you want to play for the Ravens you can be as horrible as you want so long as there’s no video of the incident.

2.)    Worst Fans in all of the NFL.

I’ve experienced 31 teams come into Gillette, and Baltimore fans are by the far the worst when they come to New England. First of all they all wear these UGLY purple Camo pants.

I’m not a fashionista, but wearing something that ugly should be punishable by death.

camo pants

They all sing that horrible White Stripes song “Seven Nation Army”, y’know the one that every college marching band plays and every student sings along to. Pink Hats singing “Sweet Caroline” isn’t half bad after you’ve experienced these horrible people sing the White Stripes for 3 hours straight. In general, the Ravens have been the most disrespectful towards me at the stadium, and for no reason. They are this way even during a week 3 regular season game.

These Ravens fans gave Ray Rice a STANDING OVATION at training camp AFTER the incident in which he beat his wife. Not only were they satisfied with him only getting a 2 game ban, but they were ready to build him a statue for what he did.

I’ve crossed into enemy territory and have seen the Patriots play in Philadelphia. A place that is supposed to be the scariest place to wear opposing colors to a game. Compared to Baltimore fans, Philly fans seemed like Mr. Rogers. Way more friendly and respectful than fans of Baltimore. It’s not just Ravens fans who are horrible; it’s all Baltimore sports fans. Oriole’s fans are just as bad and would always talk smack to opposing fans even when their team was in the toilet.

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BST&N’s Top 5 Patriots Moments of 2013 (VIDEO)

Okay, let’s face it. 2013 was not a kind year for the Patriots at all. It started with them getting knocked around in the AFC Championship game at home to the hated Baltimore Ravens, there was a star Tight End arrested for murder, and every time Gronkowski touched the ball in 2013, he got hurt. Here are the top 5 Patriots moments from 2013:

Tom Brady Brocos

5.) Patriots Defeat the Texans in the Playoffs, January 13, 2013.

The Houston Texans were a different team after losing big time to the Patriots on a Monday night in the regular season. Houston knew it was a huge game, and even wore their letterman jackets to Foxboro. That game morally destroyed that team, and when they returned to Foxboro for the divisional playoff game, their tails were still between their legs. The Patriots destroyed the Texans 41-28 to advance to play the Ravens in the AFC Championship for the 2nd year in a row.

4.) Patriots Complete Miracle Comeback Against Browns, December 8, 2013.


Things were not looking good for the Patriots against the lowly Cleveland Browns. They were down by 12 points with just over a minute to play in the 4th quarter. With 1:01 left, Tom Brady threw a 2 yard Touchdown to Julian Edelman to make the game a 1 possession game, but the team still needed to recover an onside kick, which almost never works. Stephen Gostokowski laid down a beautiful onside kick which the Patriots recovered at the Cleveland 40 yard line. After a 1 yard pass by Brady, he tried going deep in the end zone to Josh Boyce, but on the play pass interference was called and the Patriots got the ball at the 1 yard line. They punched the ball in to take a 1 point lead. The Browns still had enough time to drive the ball, and kicker Billy Cundiff missed a field goal as time expired to give the Patriots the win, and keep them in contention for a first round bye.

3.)  Patriots get Payback against the Ravens, December 15, 2013.

Whenever the Patriots and Ravens play each other, the games seem to be close. The Patriots went into Baltimore with the Ravens still playing to get a playoff spot with 2 weeks remaining. The Patriots took an early 17-0 lead, but the Ravens kept it close. It was just a 2 possession game in the 4th quarter, but then the Ravens puked all over themselves, and the Patriots defense took over to give the Patriots a 41-7 win. All the “experts” from ESPN picked the Ravens to win the game. That loss eventually kept the Ravens who defeated the Patriots twice last season, out of the playoffs.

2.) Unicorns, Show Ponies, Where’s the Beef?!?! October 13, 2013.


Every football fan has heard Scott Zolak’s call of the Tom Brady’s winning TD pass with 5 seconds left in the game. As amazing as the TD was, it was a miracle the Patriots were even in the position. Trailing by 1 the Patriots failed to convert a 4th down conversion inside their own 30 yard line, and the Saints were only able to come up with a field goal to make it a 4 point game. On the next play, Tom Brady threw an interception, and that surely looked the end for the Patriots. Luckily for New England, the Saints didn’t weren’t able to eat the clock up. The Patriots got the ball back with 1:13 to play and no timeouts. Tom Brady was Tom Brady and kept his cool and drove the offense down field, and eventually it Kembrell Thompkins for a 17 yard TD with 5 seconds left to win the game 30-27.


1.)Brady V. Manning, 24 point comeback, November 23, 2013

It was Wes Welkers return to Gillette Stadium, and of course all the hype of a normal game against Peyton Manning and Tom Brady. On the coldest night in November, the Patriots couldn’t hold onto the ball, as they lost fumble after fumble to the Broncos, and they looked like a team lost on the football field trailing 24-0 at halftime. It was so bad fans at Gillette were booing the hometown team as they went to the locker room. They came out of the locker room a new team. Brady found Edelman in the end zone early in the 3rd quarter to make it 24-7, and the Patriots kept bringing the heat and scored 31 un-answered points to make it a 31-24 game. But Peyton answered and tied the game with 3:06 to play. With the wind playing a major factor, Bill Belichick decided to defer the ball to start overtime after winning the coin toss. It paid off as the Broncos were unable to score. But then the Patriots couldn’t score, and the teams kept punting the ball to each other. With 3 minutes left and the Patriots punting, old friend Wes Welker didn’t call off his teammates in time and a Bronco made contact and the Patriots got possession of the ball in the Broncos 20. That led to the Game winning kick by Gostkowski, and proved to the football world, the Patriots were a legit contender.

Now with the playoffs and 2014 starting let’s see what this Patriots team can do. They hope to go to New York for the Super Bowl in February.

Patriots Embarrass Ravens In Baltimore

Last year, the Patriots lost to the Ravens twice. Once on a Monday night in Baltimore, and again in the AFC Championship game at Gillette that ended the Patriots season. Every time the Patriots play the Ravens they seem to struggle. Not on Sunday. For the first time all season, the Patriots played good football for a full 60 minutes, and blew out Baltimore 41-7.

LeGarrette Blount

Before the game started the Patriots clinched the AFC East title for the fifth straight year when the Miami Dolphins lost to the Buffalo Bills, and they put themselves in position for a first-round bye with the win over the Ravens. All the Patriots need to do is win next week in order to get the first round bye.

After going 3 and out on the first drive of the game, the Patriots forced the Ravens to punt, and on the next drive, the Patriots scored a touchdown on a 1 yard run by LaGarrette Blount, that was set up by a Pass Interference call on the Baltimore defense when Tom Brady tried to go deep down the field to Julian Edelman in the end zone.

Ravens Quarterback Joe Flacco threw a pass intercepted by rookie, Logan Ryan on the next drive, and six plays later, Brady found Shane Vereen for a 4 yard touchdown to make it 14-0. That would be all the scoring the Patriots would need to defeat the Ravens, thanks to the great defense that stepped up for the Patriots.

Down 17-0 early in the 3rd quarter, the Ravens attempted a 4th conversion on 4th and 3 from the Patriots 39, but the Patriots Defense denied the Flacco, and on the next Ravens drive, Logan Ryan again came up with another interception to keep the Ravens off the scoreboard. After another Patriots field goal, the Ravens went for another 4th down conversion and again failed to convert.

On 4th down at the Patriots 19 yard line in the 4th quarter, the Ravens finally decided to try to get on the board with a field goal, but Kicker Justin Tucker, who broke the longest field goal record last week, missed an easy field goal, and the Patriots again got the ball back without the Ravens scoring.

Despite the dominance from the Patriots defense, the team still let the Ravens hang around as it was still just a 3 possession game, and after the Patriots were forced to punt, Flacco rushed for a touchdown after a questionable pass interference penalty was called on the Patriots. That made the game just a 13 point game with still over 9 minutes to play.

The Ravens forced the Patriots 3 and out, but the Ravens couldn’t score on the next drive again failing to convert on 4th down. From there the Patriots finally got into the end zone for the first time since the 1st quarter when Blount rushed for a 7 yard touchdown making the score 27-7 with just 2:05 to play.

On the ensuing kickoff, Jacoby Jones ran the ball out of the end zone and was stopped at the 3. However Baltimore challenged that Jones’ foot was out of bounds when he caught the kickoff, and they won the challenge to get the ball at the 20 yard line. With the Ravens wasting everybody’s time by challenging in a game that was already over, karma came and bit them hard.

On the 1st play, the backup Quarterback Tyrod Taylor fumbled the ball and Chandler Jones fell on the ball in the end zone for another Patriots TD. With the Ravens still throwing the ball on the next drive, Tavon Wilson picked off Taylor and returned it to the end zone to make it 41-7.

It was a sweet tasting victory for the Patriots since they always seem to struggle against the Ravens. The blowout was the biggest Ravens loss at home in franchise history, and put the Ravens playoff chances in jeopardy.

Next week the Patriots need to win to guarantee a first round bye. If they don’t win, and Cincinnati defeats the Ravens, the Patriots will have to play in the wild card game the following week.

NFL Week 16 Preview : Patriots @ Ravens

Playoff implications are on the line in Week 16 in Baltimore. Who will come to play?

After a 4-6 start, the Baltimore Ravens have won their last four – making a strong late season push to return to the playoffs for the sixth straight campaign. The rematch of last year’s AFC Championship was originally scheduled for Sunday Night Football, but got flexed to 4:25 in favor of the Bears vs. Eagles. Including the playoffs, the Ravens are 3-3 against the Patriots over the past six years. This non-division rivalry reached new heights when Baltimore denied New England a chance to play in the Super Bowl last year, embarrassing the Patriots in Gillette Stadium 28-13 and then hoisting the Lombardi Trophy.

Sitting a game behind the 9-5 Bengals, the Ravens have clawed their way back to wildcard legitimacy despite their worst rushing production in recent years of 82.9 YPG. Ray Rice is averaging a subpar (to say the least) 3.1 YPC, but has always found success against the Patriots. New England is coming off the wrong end of their fifth straight game decided by one score or less with a 24-20 last second loss in Miami. This is easily the most adversity a Patriots team has faced in the Belichick era, off-season departures and season-ending injuries are truly beginning to dictate just how much gas is left in the tank as we approach January football.

Brady couldn’t be more accurate with his statement after the Dolphins game, “There is a small margin of error”. The team is young and with inexperience comes mistakes. Without the security blanket of Gronk in the lineup, Tom has relied on Julian “Minitron” Edelman as his go-to. Jules has 89 receptions for 914 yards and 6 TD but the efficiency lost in the Red Zone seems irreplaceable. Outside of that consistent production, no one player has been a staple every given sunday. For the second straight week, the Pats have an opportunity to lock up their fifth straight AFC East title. Because the Steelers beat the Bengals last week, the Patriots are still in line to receive the 2 seed if they win out. What will give tomorrow afternoon? Can New England take the next step in restoring the faith or does Baltimore stay hot and give the Pats a reality check? Weather is calling for a 60 degree day with thunderstorm possibilities, here’s to hoping we don’t see a repeat of the brutal Cincinnati conditions. Check out these three keys to victory for an important late-season matchup for Belichick and company:

1) Contain Torrey Smith: Despite a modest total of 59 receptions and 4 TD, the UMaryland burner has 1,032 yards on the season. Smith has recorded a grab of 40+ yards in 8 games this year with a long of 74. Week after week, the Patriots have been burned over the top from the likes of Mike Wallace, Josh Gordon, Andre Johnson and more. These impact plays occur far too often, illustrating a glaring weakness aside from the depleted defensive line.

New England is allowing 132.5 rushing YPG, putting them at the bottom of the pack at 31st in the NFL. Assuming Ray Rice returns to normality with the porous front seven, limiting the Flacco to Torrey connection is imperative. Furthermore, TE Dennis Pitta made his 2013 debut two weeks ago – filling the void that the Boldin departure created. Flacco has 18 TD and 17 INT on the season. He is on pace to record the largest amount of passing attempts and turnovers in his career. If Chandler and Nink are able to win their respective matchups, it will be a long day for the Ravens offense. McCourty and Gregory also need to have solid performances over the top at safety if New England wants any chance to escape with a victory.

2) Special Teams: For as clutch and consistent as Gostkowski has been this year, he killed the Patriots last week with his third missed field goal of the season and an untimely kickoff out-of-bounds. This ultimately allowed Miami to score that go-ahead touchdown and forced New England to score a TD in the last seconds compared to a manageable chip shot. On the other side of the ball, the Ravens have one of the most dangerous returners in Jacoby Jones. He has one touchdown on the season but is always a threat to take it all the way. Baltimore placekicker Justin Tucker had a legendary performance last week with six field goals and a game winning 61 yarder. The third phase of the game will be an important factor in the outcome of tomorrow’s contest. Execution is key.

3) Linebacker Play: Dont’a Hightower and Dane Fletcher have been the recipients of additional playing time after Mayo’s season-ending pectoral injury. While Fletcher made some game-changing plays against Denver, Hightower struggled brutally in coverage against Miami last week. Yancy Thigpen caught a 14 yard TD pass with 1:15 left in which had Dont’a turned around and played the ball, he would have easily intercepted Tannehill’s game-winning pass. Hightower is solid in the run but has not been able to make enough plays when they matter. The Rice/Pierce backfield is an above average tandem and this game will be physical. The Ravens have weapons all over the field and the Patriots will need to cause a turnover if they want to get this done on the road.

These teams don’t like each other and playoff implications are on the line. What more could you ask for? I believe the Patriots can get it done with some timely luck that seems to alternate week in and week out. 21-18 New England.

Ravens Shock Patriots, Return To Super Bowl

Tom Brady sits on the ground following the interception that sealed the game for the Ravens.

Tom Brady sits on the ground following the interception that sealed the AFC Championship game win for the Ravens.

Remember when Tom Brady in the postseason was as sure as death or taxes? His 9-0 start to his postseason career had people all over New England thinking that this late-round diamond in the rough could never do any wrong. Three championships in his first four seasons.

None in his last eight.

Maybe it was payback. Maybe it was destiny. Whatever it was, Joe Flacco outplayed Brady, the Ravens defense outplayed that of the Patriots and as banged up as Baltimore  had been this year, it was the home team and favorite that felt the blows when it mattered most. Oh, and Ray Lewis, with the help if his good friend, God, has lived to play another day – and for the Super Bowl.

From the moment the coin hit the ground in favor of the Ravens and they deferred to the second half – stealing the Patriots’ bread and butter on their home field – it just seemed like it wasn’t meant to be. They committed fewer penalties, made less mistakes and completed a higher percentage of their passes. Most importantly, their zero turnovers, compared to three from the Patriots, were nothing less than huge. They were the team that executed better on Sunday.

Like it did towards the end if the regular season, the Patriots offense struggled to capitalize when their defense set them up with good field position and scored just 13 points – their lowest total of 2012. As the league’s No. 1 offense, the fewest points they had scored this year before yesterday were 18 in the Week 2 loss to the Cardinals.

The windy conditions at Gillette Stadium forced both teams to play conservatively and cost the Pats a couple chances at field goals they would normally attempt.

Their opening drive looked promising, but Wes Welker couldn’t haul in a deep pass from Brady when he had his defender beat by a couple if steps. They then almost caught the Baltimore special teams off guard, however, as Ryan Mallett snuck into the punt formation and forced the Ravens to burn a timeout.

A quick three-and-out by Baltimore gave New England the ball back, but only after a holding penalty called on Aqib Talib backed them up to their own 21. They had to settle for a 31-yard field goal from Stephen Gostkowski and took a 3-0 lead on their 32nd straight red zone possession that resulted in points.

The next Baltimore drive ended quickly as well, but came at a cost as Talib hurt his thigh while breaking up a pass on third and long. Some production from last week’s star Shane Vereen on the ensuing drive and a 15-yard personal foul penalty called on Lewis were for not as Brandon Lloyd ended up dropping a tough catch on third down.

Flacco then missed an open Dennis Pitta down the field and New England couldn’t convert following a 28-yard punt return from Welker as Paul Kruger influenced the Brady pass. The Pats D allowed just one completion in the first quarter and the Ravens went 0-for-3 on third down. New England led the Ravens 3-0 after one quarter of the AFC Championship game for the second consecutive year.

As the second quarter began, Flacco would lead a 90-yard drive in his first Title Game win to put the Ravens on the board with a two-yard run by Ray Rice. Jerod Mayo and Dont’a Hightower both missed tackles on the back as he then walked into the endzone on second down. Pitta had an 18-yard reception on third and four and Flacco took advantage of Talib’s absence, hitting Torrey Smith on a 25-yard pass to the New England 15.

Brady would answer right away, however, aided by another personal foul penalty, this time on Dannell Ellerbe. A 24-yard pass to Welker set the Pats up in good position and Brady found him again from a yard out to make it 10-7 Patriots with 4:18 left in the opening half.

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