According to NFL.com, the Titans defense is feeling overlooked and under-appreciated due to all of the talk about the Ravens defense.
Granted, all of the talk about the Ravens defense is well-deserved. Thanks to an unbelievable season, Canton is already starting to engrave Ed Reed’s bust for the Hall of Fame. Ray Lewis’ was completed years ago…it’s just sitting there waiting for his retirement.
The national media has been hyping the Ravens defense all week. Some of them have picked the Ravens to represent the AFC in Tampa this year, which is like giving Jeff Fisher a barrel of gasoline to dump on the fire that is the proud Titans defense.
Here are some quotes featured in Thomas George’s column at NFL.com:
Cortland Finnegan, CB: “Well, that’s what everybody is saying, they are the best. We’ve got a lot to prove to people for a team that finished 13-3 with the No. 1 seed in the AFC. We’re rested, and we’re confident. We haven’t talked a lot about this. All of us on defense have sort of put it in our back pocket as a little extra ammunition.”
Kyle Vanden Bosch, DE: “This isn’t a game where defensively, in terms of schemes, you keep things in your hip pocket and save them for another day. We will use whatever we need to use to win this game. Their defense outplay our defense? That isn’t going to happen. We heard some of this stuff when we played them before. We heard it when we played Pittsburgh. We do think a lot of their defense. We think more of ours.”
Keith Bulluck, LB: “First and foremost, the Ravens defense has been at the top of the league for the last few years. It’s a very good defense. But we do have a problem with them being considered so much better than our defense. And now we get the chance to show it. It’s quite an opportunity.”
Alge Crumpler, TE: “Our defense will be ready for anything. This is a line-up-and-hit-you-in-the-mouth defense. We don’t confuse anybody. We understand matchups better than any defense I’ve ever been around. They expect to win those matchups.”
This is another example of the “lack of respect” factor. I haven’t been in their locker room, but I can guarantee you that Jeff Fisher is using this for motivation.
Buckle up your chin straps, ladies and gentlemen. This is going to be a brawl.