NFL.com is counting down the top 20 games of last season. So far, the Baltimore Ravens are featured in two of them. One’s good and the other not so good. But regardless, these two games will live in Ravens’ infamy for many years to come…
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#13 – AFC Divisional Playoffs at Pittsburgh
Though this is a game I try to forget, it was a great one featuring two of the league’s premier defenses. This AFC North matchup is always a classic but it would be nice to see the Ravens win it every once and awhile.
The Ravens had this game put away. With a two touchdown lead going into half, all the Ravens offense had to do was run the ball and make a few key completions. Apparently, that’s easier said than done. Flacco threw a pick, Rice fumbled the ball, and Boldin and Housh dropped key passes allowing the Steelers to rally back and win 31 to 24. This game has been dissected enough to the point where thinking about it makes me sick. I’m sure the bad taste is still in the players’ mouths and they’ll be ready to dish revenge to their longtime divisional rival in week one.
On this Monday night, two teams clashed in a see saw like game with points flying on to the scoreboard. The Ravens were first to strike, quickly racking up 21 points before the half. But there was still enough time left on the clock for Matt Schaub to hit Andre Johnson for a score. Then rookie David Reed seemingly put the game away early after returning the 2nd half kickoff 103 yds for a touchdown. The Texan’s morale was low, but they still had plenty of fight left in them. Next thing you knew, The Texans were driving down the field with reckless abandon. The Ravens defense looked like a highschool team as the well organized Houston offense constructed a masterful comeback. A 21 point deficit was overcome and now the game was bound for overtime. Luckily, Josh Wilson, a player acquired from the Seahawks earlier that season, came through and made a play when the Ravens needed him too. The pick six ended the madness and the Ravens walked away with the W.
Though the Ravens did win, it showed a chink in the armor. The Ravens lack of an ability to close games was a problem debated extensively that season. In a way, this foreshadowed a future game with more up for the taking. But in that game, The Ravens were playing a superior team that was able to close it out when they were presented with the opportunity. I’m talking of course of the AFC Divisional game against the Steelers.
Have any thoughts or memories of watching either of those games? Please share them in the comments below.
Topics: AFC Divisional Playoffs, Andre Johnson, Anquan Boldin, Baltimore Ravens, David Reed, Houston Texans, Joe Flacco, Josh Wilson, Josh Wilson Pick Six, Matt Schaub, NFL.com, Overtime, Pittsburgh Steelers, Ravens Sign T.J. Houshmandzadeh, T.J. Houshmandzadeh, Top 20 Games, Top Games, Top Games Of 2011