FOXBOROUGH, Mass. — The Ravens can silence the doubters and critics today with 60 minutes of their best football.
In a contrast of styles, the hard-hitting, defensive-minded Ravens take on the glitzy, offense-heavy New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium this afternoon. It marks the third conference championship game appearance for Baltimore while the Patriots are playing in their ninth AFC championship game. Of course, the Ravens are 1-1, winning in Oakland in the 2000 season and falling to Pittsburgh in coach John Harbaugh’s rookie season three years ago. New England owns a 6-1 all-time record in conference championship games and is 3-0 in ones played in Foxborough.
Of course, the Ravens have previously tasted postseason success in New England after beating down the Patriots by a 33-14 score two years ago. They’ll look for a similar result today to send them to the Super Bowl in Indianapolis in two weeks.
The Ravens will be playing in their 17th all-time postseason game (10-6) and are 7-4 playing on road playoff games.
There are no surprises among the Ravens’ inactives after safety Ed Reed (left ankle) was the only player listed on Friday’s injury report. The veteran was listed as probable.
For New England, starting right tackle Sebastian Vollmer is inactive after being listed as questionable with foot and back injuries. He was limited in practice all week and will be replaced in the starting lineup by rookie tackle Nate Solder. He was the 17th overall pick in the first round of last April’s draft.
Though he’s not a large part of the offense, Patriots wide receiver Chad Ochocinco is away from the team as he attends his father’s funeral in Florida.
Today’s referee is Alberto Riveron and the weather is clear and cold in Foxborough.
The Ravens will wear their white jerseys with black pants while New England is donning their blue jerseys with silver pants this afternoon.
Here are today’s inactives…
WR Tandon Doss
CB Chykie Brown
RB Anthony Allen
LB Josh Bynes
LB Sergio Kindle
OL Justin Boren
DT Brandon McKinney
QB Ryan Mallet
RB Stevan Ridley
RB Shane Vereen
LB Gary Guyton
OL Donald Thomas,
RT Sebastian Vollmer
WR Chad Ochocinco.