This past week has sucked, but Ravens will be great again in ’12

January 29, 2012 | Peter Dilutis


What an incredibly awful week!

I still cannot really believe what I witnessed in Foxborough a week ago today. Perhaps the most intense football game that I’ve witnessed in person throughout my relatively young life ended in extreme disappointment.

There was so much on the line for everyone.

The fans, who have now spent four consecutive years loading up on purple gear, spending big money on tickets, trips, hotels, etc in anticipation of another Super Bowl run.

The players, who I’ve gotten to know a bit over the past couple of years, who spend 365 days a year preparing for the final moments of a game like that.

The coaches, executives, team employees, trainers…this has sucked for everyone. There’s no way around it.

Personally, I’ve had so many thoughts over the past week but I’ve just had no desire to write about them. It is absolutely sickening that what we all wanted so badly was right in their grasp, literally, and we let it get away.

As bad as it was for all of us (imagine how much we at WNST had on the line regarding promotions, Super Bowl trips, etc), and as much time as some of us have needed to get over the loss, we cannot let the heartbreak that we all feel cloud our perspective.

Yes, it is incredibly hard for a team to get back to where the Ravens just were. There are no guarantees in sports. However, the Baltimore Ravens have built their organization up to where annual contention is not a goal but an expectation.

When Steve Bisciotti fired Brian Billick after the 2007 season, he talked about wanting to avoid the valleys that the team endured under Billick. Billick had tremendous success in Baltimore. He brought back a winning culture to Baltimore and that culture has carried over into this era of Ravens football.

However, there were some years under Billick, specifically 2005 and 2007, when the Ravens were basically out of contention by the second half of the season. Much of that had to do with not having a legitimate quarterback, but the bottom line is that under Billick, the Ravens, at times, underachieved.

That has not happened with John Harbaugh and Joe Flacco at the helm. The Baltimore Ravens have transformed into an elite franchise in the NFL. Period.

4 Comments For This Post

  1. Sam Says:

    Here here!

    I know Raven nation quarrels internally about some personnel decisions. But come time for 2012 we will all pull out our purple and black and stand firmly behind whoever our trusted front office deems wisest to play for our team.

    Rejoice Raven Nation! For this League knoweth no fury like a QB/OC one catch shy of the Super Bowl. These two will light the NFL on fire come next season!

  2. unitastoberry Says:

    The 24 hour rule does not apply when you get beat in the AFC championship game on a drop.Its going to hurt until the Giants beat the Brady Bunch. I hope the Giants defense makes the other knee on Brady Jello. Then they can have another penalty named after the easy to hate diva.

  3. PghSteve Says:

    ” The vast majority of a team that, for all intents and purposes, won the AFC Championship game will be returning in 2012.”

    Huh? The Ravens won the AFC Championship Game? Wow. And I just read that the Patriots have arrived in Indy for the Super Bowl. Someone should tell them that, for all intents and purposes, they lost the AFC Championship game and might as well head home.

    By the way, the term “for all intent and purposes” means for all practical uses or situations. Does not really fit when the final score of a football game shows a clear winner and loser.

  4. Ed D'Adamo Says:

    Nice write up, Pete.

    It is nice to see a bit of optimism coming from Ravens Nation after perhaps the most devasting loss in franchise history. As fans it is easy to get caught up in the ‘here and now’. Which I guess, to some extent is part of being a fan; but a broader look on our situation makes one realize the big picture of how successful this franchise is, can be and will be for years to come. That mindset most definitely puts things into perspective for the ‘fanatic’ in all of us to realize, we have a lot to be grateful for as Ravens fans. The front office will do their job and we will continue to do ours in support. Peaks and valleys my friend, that all comes with the territory.

    And you’re right with all those losses brewing, when we do hoist that trophy, it will be just that much sweeter.

    It was nice getting to know you this year.


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