DEAR DIARY: The 2012 Baltimore Ravens Football Season …………………………

February 24, 2013 | Marty Mossa

September 10, 2012, 3pm: Dear diary the Ravens open up against the Bengals tonight at M&T Stadium. Not sure what kind of a season we’ll have. We’re aging and lost some key figures; with Suggs out I’m just not quite sure how we’ll fare. I picked the Bengals to win the division this year. They’re young, and an up and coming team, we, Pittsburgh and New England are aging.

September 11, 2012, 12am: Dear diary, the Bengals may be the best team in the AFC North this year, but not tonight. The Ravens totally dominated them 44-13. It’s off to Philadelphia where we’ve never won.

September 16, 2012, 4:30pm: Dear diary, well the replacement refs took one from us today. A late TD from Flacco to Jones was called back on a bogus offensive PI. Instead of going up by ten, we only went up by 6. The D however let Vick & Co. travel 80 yards to for a TD. Joe and friends could not covert a 3rd & 4th and 2, what was Cam thinking not running Rice in that situation with a couple of time outs left. The purple birds are 1-1.

September 23, 2012, 12noon: Dear diary, going to game tonight with Dave, boy I wish I would have kindly turned him down, would be content to stay home and watch. Will need plenty of coffee tomorrow.

September 24, 2012, 2:30am: Dear diary, WOW!!! Glad I went. What a comeback!!! New England came to town where it looked evident that they were going to embarrass the home team on Sunday Night Football. The Ravens battled back twice from two score deficits to win the game on a last second field goal by Justin Tucker. Joe out Tommed Brady.

September 28, 2012, 12am: Dear diary, the Ravens just finished their fourth game in 18 days; the first team to do so since the 1939 Brooklyn Dodgers of the All American Conference. They are only the 2nd of six teams to play on a Sunday night, then the following Thursday night and win. Cleveland gave them a game, but Ravens prevailed: 23-16.

October 7, 2012, 4:30pm: Dear diary, the Ravens looked horrible today. But the Chiefs looked even worse. It looked like Christmas Day in Kansas City, as the Chiefs gift wrapped the game and handed it to us. They say that good teams win even when they play poorly, but I shudder to think how this would have turned out against the Steelers, Texans or Broncos.

October 14, 2012, 4:30pm: Dear diary, OMG, the Ravens played one of their stereotypical games today. They got up on Dallas by double digits and allowed them to chip away at our lead. By the grace of God Tony Romo and Coach Jason Garrett screwed up at the end and allowed a lot of time to come off the clock. The football gods were with us as Dallas missed their last second field goal attempt. Ray Lewis went out of game with injury. This is the third time in his career that injuries have sidelined him (2002/2005). Ravens have never made playoffs without Lewis in the lineup.

October 21, 2012, 12:30pm: Dear dairy, I don’t have a good feeling about this one. The Texans are my pick to play in the AFC Title game. We are banged up and since they have never beaten the Ravens, you know they are looking for revenge. I hope I’m wrong.

October 21, 2012, 4:30pm: Dear diary, I was right. We got our a$$es handed to us today. At least Suggs is back and he didn’t look half bad. The bye comes at a great time, need to heal the wounds.

October 28, 2012, 1pm: Dear diary, WITHDRAW/WITHDRAW/WITHDRAW!!!! No football today. What will I do? Wife? Kids? No I got it; REDZONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

November 4, 2012, 4:30pm: Dear dairy, just what the doctor ordered; a trip to Cleveland to heal any struggling team’s woes. Ravens are now 7-2. In great shape!!!

November 11, 2012, 4:30: Dear dairy, JUST WIN BABY!!!! The Ravens continue their dominance over Oakland and win 55-20. Now it’s on to Pittsburgh with a Benless Steelers team.

November 18, 2012, 12am: Dear diary, I’m not right much, but even I knew that this game wouldn’t be a walk in the park. It was a typical Steelers/Ravens slug match. The Purple Birds escape Pittsburgh with a 13-10 win. The Ravens have beaten Pittsburgh three straight times, I think that’s the longest winning streak against them.

November 25, 2012, 8pm: Dear diary, my back is killing me. Maybe it was the long drive home from Western Maryland yesterday that caused the spasm, but I’m a hurting pup. The one thing that is making me feel better however is the comeback the Ravens made today in San Diego. If the Ravens do end up in New Orleans this year, it will be this signature moment that propelled them there. Forth and twenty nine!! WOW! How did SD allowed that to happen? San Diego may be the paradise by the Pacific, but it’s a sports hell hole.

December 2, 2012, 12noon: Dear diary today is the day we could give the Steelers the knockout punch. They come into our building with Charlie Batch, what an opportunity.

December 2, 2012, 8pm: Dear diary, %$@#!!!! We had a chance to end Pittsburgh’s season and we breathed new life into the ba$#rds!!! How in God’s name could we blow a 10 point lead at home? How in the hell could Ray Rice not get any carries in the 4th quarter? Perhaps it is time for Cam to go!!!!

December 9, 2012, 8pm: Dear diary, %$@# again!!! How in the hell can we give up eight points in the final moments to a back up QB and lose to the Redskins in OT. Well we may not win another game this year. And although I still think we’ll make the playoffs, it will be one and done. I can only say this, the last time the Steelers beat the Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium and we lost in DC was 2000. Remember what happened then. Lol Yea right!! Remember where you heard this first; THE RAVENS ARE NOT GOING TO THE SUPERBOWL!!!!!

December 16, 2012, 5pm: Dear diary, the Ravens and particularly Joe are continuing to struggle. This is the worst loss at M&T since the Colts spanked us here in 2007. Although many people are calling for Joe’s head, I’m staying loyal. Unlike many front runners, I was loyal to the Ravens when they came to town in 1996. I remember the QB carousel; Bash Joe? Two words: Kyle Boller!!!

December 23, 2012, 5pm: Dear diary, I’m celebrating Christmas two days early because the Ravens have just gave Ravens Nation an early gift. They spanked the Giants at M&T. The birds blew out the defending Super Bowl champs and Joe looking like an “elite” QB as the Raven’s O gained 533 yards. Crazy year, the Ravens have now beaten a Manning and some guy named Brady.

December 30, 2012, 9am: Dear diary, I’m taking the day off, meaningless game today. Getting focused on the Colts next week.

January 1, 2013, 11am: Dear diary, Happy New Year!!!, time to exercise the demons of the Irsays and Indianapolis. Will LUCK run out on the Colts?

January 3, 2013, 6pm: Dear diary, I understand Ray will hang it up after the playoff run. It would be a storybook ending to a Hall of Fame career to win it all. But that’s a pipe dream. We’ll beat the Colts but we won’t win in Denver.

January 6, 2013, 5pm: Dear diary, we dominated the Colts, Ray’s last stand at M&T, it’s on to Denver where no one gives us a chance. I must admit, I don’t think we’ll beat Denver, but I think it will be closer than the so called experts say it will be.

January 12, 2013, 10pm: Dear diary, OMG!!! What a game!! I haven’t been this excited since we won Super Bowl XXXV. I just witnessed one of the greatest post season games of all time. Joe to Jacoby 70 yard pass with 30 seconds left to tie it; Justin Tucker’s 47 yard field goal in the subfreezing tundra of Denver in double OT, Joe beats Peyton WOW!!! Take that John Elway. WE’RE GOING BACK TO THE FINAL FOUR, AFC CHAMPIONSHIP BABY!!!!!!!!!!

January 20, 2013, 12noon: Dear diary, can’t figure it out; we’re 9 point dogs in New England. We always play them tough. This is Joe’s chance to shut everyone up. I’m not sure what we’ll do today, but I’m starting to think we may actually have a chance to win it all.

January 20, 2013, 10pm: Dear diary, oh it’s just a feeling: THE RAVENS ARE GOING TO THE SUPER BOWL!!!! Wow!!!! The Ravens spanked the Pats in their own building. Joe Flacco looked more like Joe Montana with three 2nd half TD’s to propel the Ravens past the Mighty Patriots 28-13. Tom Brady was 67-0 at Gillette Stadium after leading at half time until the Ravens broke that streak. The Ravens have the Lamar Hunt Trophy and now are gunning for Lombardi. The Ravens have now beaten both Mannings, and Brady twice. Do they still have enough left in the tank to beat that guy with all the tattoos from San Francisco? Can you believe it? The Ravens are going to Super Bowl LXVII. It will be the Harbaugh Bowl.

January 29, 2013, 6pm: Dear diary, reports have linked Ray Lewis to some deer antler spray that helped accelerate his recovery. I hope this doesn’t become a distraction. I heard the provider was a REAL DEAR, and that it costs three BUCKS for it.

February 2, 2013, 8:30pm: Dear diary, Jonathon Ogden goes to HOF on 1st ballot, Torrey Smith wins inspirational player of the year, less than 24 hour before kickoff, starting to get nervous. I think we’re going to win.

February 3, 2013, 12:30pm: Dear diary, the Ravens are 6 six hours from playing in SB 47, I can’t take it. I think they will lose. Don’t know why, but got sick a feeling. Turning on Caps/Pens game, pacing, pacing, pacing, pacing pacing…………………………………………………………………………

February 3, 2013,
• 1:31pm T-minus 5 hours
• 2:31pm T-Minus 4 hours
• 3:31pm T-minus 3 hours

February 3, 2013, 4pm: Dear diary, Lisa thinks I’m mad at her, I’m stressed out of my mind; don’t remember being this stressed 12 years ago. She tells me to “enjoy the moment”. She’s right, my team is in the biggest game in all of sports and I can’t enjoy it.

February 3, 2013, 6:30pm: Dear diary, HEAR WE GO!!!

February 3, 2013, 6:31pm: Dear diary, the National Anthem; I hear the loud Ohhhhhhhhhhhh, feel better, quite a supporting cast cheering on the Ravens.

February 3, 2013, 6:35-11pm:
• 49ers receive kickoff and have to punt. Good field position. Flacco to Boldin: RAVENS SCORE…7-0
• Flacco to Pitta: RAVENS SCORE 14-3
• Flacco to Jones: 21-3
• FG SF 21-6 at half.
• Half Time, went out for air. You can hear a pin drop on busy King Avenue.
• Ravens receive 2nd half kickoff, Jones taking it out, “no, no, no” stay in.
• OMG he takes it the house 108 yards no flags. 28-6 Ravens
• Still nervous, won’t relax until triple zeros on clock.
• 9ers have ball around 40 yard line, 3rd & 13; wait,why has the clock stopped, where has Simms and Nantz gone, why are the lights outs?
• 13 and change left in 3rd, Ravens have momentum, turn on the %@#$ing lights, pacing, pacing pacing………………….
• Lights on 9ers stopped, Ravens keep ball then punt back.
• 49ers score 28-13 & are back in ball game.
• Flacco sacked, bad punt by Koch, 9ers score, 28-20. Now we have a ball game.
• Rice fumbles
• SF goes for FG, Acres misses, yea!!! what? A flag? Running into kicker? Re-kick, it’s good!!!!
• 9ers get three 28-23 Ravens
• Game crumbling in front of my eyes, pacing, rocking can’t watch, but can’t turn away.
• Ravens first and goal inside the 49ers 10, must punch it, MUST PUNCH IT IN!!!!
• Can’t must settle for 3, 31-23.
• Niners score in 4th quarter, go for two and fail 31-29 Ravens.
• Ravens drive down field, chew up clock, Flacco on 3rd and one audibles and throws to Bolden who makes an incredible catch. If they can punch it in here, they go up by 9 with about 4 minutes left.
• Drive stalls and must settle for 3 and go up by 5, 34-29.
• Four and change left, it’s now up to the D to seal the deal. It appears they won’t
• SF takes it all the way down to the Ravens 8 with 2 and change left.

DEAR DIARY, this is it, we choked, and the Forty Niners will enjoy the GREATEST comeback in SB history. Son is crying on couch, I’m pacing and rocking as if I’m a parakeet. Just want to turn it off, turn off the train wreck, CAN’T WATCH, CAN’T TURN OFF, MUST WATCH:
• 1st and goal from the 8,
• 2nd and goal from the 8,
• 3rd and goal Crabtree is crunched at the 2 and drops the ball.
• 4th and goal from the 8. It all comes down to this.
• Kapernick back to throw, the blitz is on, he overthrows Crabtree. The Ravens get the ball with about 1:12 left. SF has only one TO.
• It’s now 4th down Raven’s ball from our own 10 yard line. : 12 left on clock. TAKE THE SAFETY I YELL, TAKE THE SAFETY!!! The snap goes to Koch, he dances around the end zone, and he finally runs out of bounds with: 04 left in regulation.
• Free kick from our own 20. This is it, we cover punt and we’re world champions.
• Koch booms it 60 yards, Ginn take it at the 20, 25, 30, 35, he eludes, one, then two, then three tackles, TACKLE HIM, TACKLE HIM!!!!!!! Bynes dives on his back around mid field and brings him down.

GAME OVER WORLD CHAMPS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

February 3, 2013, 11pm, Dear diary, I started screaming, I hugged my wife and son, we ran outside and it sounded like New Years Eve. The confetti is raining down on the Super Dome, Joe is MVP, here comes the Lombardi Trophy carried by Super Bowl XX MVP Richard Dent of the Bears, this is so surreal, I can’t believe it; WORLD CHAMPIONS, I never thought it would get any better than Super Bowl XXXV when we killed the Giants, but that game was over after the 3rd quarter and we knew we were champs, this one came down to the very last play and like always the Ravens made us earn it. In an instant we were world champs.
• 11:07pm: My mother calls to congratulate me.
• 11:10pm: Brother Jimmy calls
• 11:12pm: Good friend Bob calls
• 11:15pm: I call Lee

February 4, 2013, 1am: Dear diary, good night, I won’t get much sleep tonight but that’s ok, Wow Super Bowl Champs, Super Bowl Champs, Super Bowl Champs; can’t stop saying it.