Willis McGahee said “the loss takes away everything.” He’s right, the rest of us are just desperate for something good.
The Ravens LOST last night. I’m surprised no one seems to notice that. I’ve read a lot about the “dominating performance”, the “almost upset”, the “questionable officiating” and the “complete performance” the Ravens put together. Unfortunately, I’ve read surprisingly little about the 4-8 record, another loss at home, the six game losing streak, the very difficult schedule still ahead, and the completely inexcusable meltdown this team suffered at the end of the game. No questions were answered tonight, we just felt better because the team has been SO bad in recent weeks that positive signs feel like a win.
This team put together their best performance of the season against the Patriots’ worst performance of the season, and they still lost. There were players bitching about the timeout after the game-but Rex Ryan clearly called it. The “dominant” offensive line (which played well for much of this game); couldn’t pave the way for the Ravens to pick up as much as one first down on the ground in the final 3 drives. Brian Billick (or Rick Neuheisel, or whoever the hell is calling plays), couldn’t come up with a creative pass play to get a first down either after thinking up sparkling pass plays at other times during the game.
The reason it feels good is because it gave us that “March Madness” feeling. We thought our 16-seed alma mater was going to beat a 1 seed Duke or Kansas in the first round. We had the lead. We outplayed the better team. We were calling our friends to make sure they were watching. We were thinking about what we were going to wear to work tomorrow, and how many times we’d laugh in our bosses face (especially after what he did to us after the Browns game!) Even after we blew the lead to the 1 seed team, we STILL had a chance to win at the end. But in the end, the 1 seed was a 1 seed for a reason, and we were a 16 seed for a reason. The memories of the game would always play in our head, and we were proud of our team’s performance in a tough, even possibly questionable loss.
Are you okay with the idea of the Ravens being a 1 seed, Baltimore? Because judging from the reactions of writers, columnists, bloggers, and fans on message boards; it appears as though we ARE okay with it. We’re willing to blame the officiating, we’re willing to appreciate a close call, and we’re willing to steal some positive feelings after an extremely difficult season.
Maybe that’s okay. This HAS been a difficult season, and it does feel nice to enjoy something once in a while. But frankly, this team is still a bad team. This team is still chocked full of showboating despite the act that there are minimal results on the field. Kyle Boller still has never done anything significant at the end of a game (well, I mean, I know there was the Texans game a couple years back….). Mark Clayton is still basically non-existent in this offense. Even with C-Mac back, this secondary still found multiple ways to allow receivers to slip behind them. And Brian Billick still showed questionable play-calling in key situations.
Do you feel any more confident about the 2008 Baltimore Ravens after tonight’s game?
I don’t care about the officiating. There were questionable calls. Not bad calls, not wrong calls, not missed calls, just questionable calls. Bart Scott’s behavior was BEYOND questionable, he deserves a suspension for pulling those shenanigans (Remember when an official blindly throw a flag in a Browns game? Ask Orlando Brown how that ended up).
Ed Reed is the only NFL player to score TD returns on a punt, a blocked punt, an INT, and a fumble recovery. He thought he might have another at the end of the half. Instead, his fumble cost the Ravens a chance to pick up 3 or 7 there, which could have been a significant difference. The Ravens did get three sacks, but they also allowed Tom Brady enough time to figure out the BCS on some pass plays.
I know I’m all over the place. But I’m frustrated by another loss. A loss to a very good football team; but still a loss. I’m surprised that there aren’t more people just as frustrated. Apparently it’s okay because there was questionable officiating.
Let’s see what everyone else has to say….
Best of WNST’s Monday Blogs:
Todd Helmick blames the refs
Bob Haynie says team scoring first has won all Ravens games in ’07 (Pats scored first last night)
Ray Bachman was counting on fans to help Ravens
Mark Suchy thinks BB&T Classic needs altering
Nestor Aparicio doesn’t think any Oriole would be unhappy if traded (Remember when BJ Surhoff cried when he was traded to Atlanta? That was even during the bad years!)
Steve Hennessey also thinks Terps should dump BB&T
Casey Willett wonders if not McNair, then who?
Nestor Aparicio thinks Bedard is only good chip for O’s to trade
The Sun’s Sheil Kapadia says back-to-back three and outs did Ravens in
The Sun’s Don Markus says losing QB Boller ‘proud of team’ after loss
The Sun’s Peter Schmuck says many instances could have changed outcome
The Sun’s Jamison Hensley says Ravens fell just short of history
The Sun’s David Steele says Ravens ‘collapsed’ at end of game against Pats
The Sun’s Rick Maese says Ravens ‘weren’t afraid’ of Pats
The Sun’s Mike Preston says O-Line was ‘dominant’ vs. Pats
The Sun’s Don Markus says Pats fans found their way into M&T
The Sun’s Edward Lee says ‘D frustrated’ after loss
The Sun’s Mike Preston heaps praise all around; most to Running Backs
The Sun’s Mike Preston says Ryan called controversial timeout
Washington Post’s Camille Powell says Ravens couldn’t finish undefeated Pats
Washington Post’s Camille Powell says McNair ineffective before ending season
TE Daniel Wilcox tells The Official Site he brought energy and frustration into return against Pats
ESPN’s Mike Sando blogs Samari Rolle said refs insulted him
ESPN’s Mike Sando says Belichick not overly excited after win
ESPN’s Mike Sando says Rolle blames coaches for 4th down timeout
ESPN’s Mike Sando says Moss not impressed by trash-talking Ravens
ESPN’s Mike Sando says Harrison thought Pats ‘bullied’ by Ravens
ESPN’s Mike Sando says Ravens believe ‘fix was in’ after losing to Pats
Boston Globe’s Christopher L. Gasper says TD toss to Gaffney narrowly prevented Pats’ loss
Boston Globe’s Dan Shaughnessy says Pats fortunate to remain undefeated
Boston Globe’s Mike Reiss says Pats unable to stop run
Boston Globe’s Gregory Lee Jr. says Pats’ ‘sluggishness’ nearly ended run at perfection
Boston Globe’s Mike Reiss and Jim Rodenbush say Ravens think game stolen from them
Boston Globe’s Mike Reiss says Brady knew timeout was called and stopped on play (I saw the presser-Brady said this in jest)
Boston Globe’s Mike Reiss says Brady became just 4th QB all-time to throw for 40 TD passes
Boston Globe’s Mike Reiss says Mac didn’t think Gaffney caught TD
Boston Globe’s Mike Reiss says Belichick thinks Pats need to improve (naturally)
Boston Globe’s Mike Reiss says AD thought victory was ‘special’
Boston Globe’s Mike Reiss says Mason compared Brady’s Pats to Jordan’s Bulls
Boston Herald’s Karen Guregian says Brady ‘heroic’ late
Boston Herald’s Michael Felger says Pats no longer ‘invincible’
Boston Herald’s John Tomase says ‘luck’ doesn’t even begin to describe it
Boston Herald’s Tony Massarotti says Pats don’t but into ‘lucky’ win
Boston Herald’s Karen Guregian says criticism didn’t affect Moss
Boston Herald’s Jeff Seidel says close loss still loss for Ravens
Boston Herald says Ravens couldn’t stop Pats’ no-huddle
Boston Herald’s Chris Letourneau says Pats didn’t cover, but did get ‘over’
Providence Journal says game was rocky, but Pats got ‘happy ending’
Providence Journal’s Shalise Manza Young says Pats won Ravens’ ‘Super Bowl’
The Official Site says black jerseys available in auction
The Official Site says McNair to IR with surgery Tuesday
The Sun’s Edward Lee says Ravens had Mac back
The Sun’s Jamison Hensley says Ravens expected to sign QB this week to replace McNair on roster
The Examiner’s Matt Palmer still wonders if McNair might ever play for Ravens again
The Sun’s Bill Ordine remembers Baltimore’s best MNF moments
The Sun’s Bill Ordine only picks under
The Sun’s Bill Ordine (with a nod to Boston Globe’s Mike Reiss) reminds us Boller a Raven due to Pats
The Sun’s Bill Ordine says ’07 Ravens no ’85 Dolphins
Carroll County Times’ Josh Land says Pats’ undefeated quest getting more difficult each week
Frederick News Post’s Stan Goldberg says Boller’s late INT hurt Ravens’ chances at upset
Frederick News Post’s Stan Goldberg says instead of taking Ravens to Super Bowl, McNair disappointing and done in ’07
Sox & Dawgs‘ “Steve” says Pats ‘survive’
“The Soccer Dad” thought Ravens had Pats stopped
Bleacher Report’s Michael Whittenberg says McGahee’s 138 almost enough to lead Ravens past Pats
NFL Scores’ “KicknWinG 2″ says Ryan’s timeout ranks with Webber’s amongst worst all time
“The NFL Guru” says Pats use ‘luck’ to get past Ravens
Ravens Roost’s Mike Brown says Pats got ‘help’ in beating Ravens
Ravens Roost’s Mike Zoran says Ravens ‘lost cool’, then game
Patriot Act’s “Beth” didn’t like Harrison’s showboating in Pats’ win (Glad she’s not a Ravens fan! She wouldn’t like anything, ever!)
Patriot Act’s Jamie Pacheco says Pats ‘barely escape’ Baltimore
Ravens Touchdown’s “Stephen” resorted to drinking after loss
The Ebony Bird’s “Jarrett” says Pats got too many chances
Fanhouse’s Ryan Wilson says Ravens think they got robbed
Fanhouse’s Adam Jacobi thinks timeouts should be called on field
Fanhouse’s Josh Alper says “close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades”
Fanhouse’s Michael David Smith says Ravens couldn’t help ’72 Dolphins out
Fanhouse’s Ryan Wilson says McNair can’t fumble if he can’t play
TERRAPINS WOMEN’S BASKETBALL:
The AP’s Doug Feinberg says Toliver got to 1,000; but Terps blew 10 point second half lead in first loss to Rutgers
The Diamondback’s Greg Schimmel says Terps had 10 point lead three times, still lost to Knights
The Diamondback’s Greg Schimmel says Langhorne became Terps‘ all-time leading rebounder in loss at Rutgers
Terrapin Times’ Dan Painter says Mosley’s shooting highlighted Charm City Classic (must subscribe) (the Terps could use a shooter NOW)
Terrapin Times’ Mike Ashley says Terps ‘jinxed’ in BB&T (must subscribe)
The Diamondback’s Andrew Zuckerman says Terps need to learn how to handle ‘press’
The Official Site announces Terps receive $10 million gift
The Sun’s Jeff Barker says $10 million donation comes from man whose name already adorns Football Team House
The Sun’s Matt Bracken takes final look at performance of future Terps
Terrapin Times’ Mark Clem says donation ‘marks landmark day’ for Terps Athletics (must subscribe)
Washington Times’ Patrick Stevens says $4.5 million of donation to facilities, $3 million to endowments, $500k to Football Team House, $2 million to University
Washington Times’ Patrick Stevens says Cal could have ended up in San Fran
Washington Post’s Marc Carig says Gossett linked to University long before donation
The Diamondback’s Jeff Amoros says Gossett has been giving since serving as baseball team manager
Inside Lacrosse announces Terps selected to finish last in ACC
Annapolis Capital’s Bill Wagner says it’s Utah’s spread option vs. Navy’s triple option
The Examiner’s Dave Carey says ‘Campbell lead’ Navy to Poinsettia Bowl
Go Mids’ David Ausiello says many reasons Johnson might consider bolting for Duke
Inside Lacrosse announces Mids selected win Patriot League
The Official Site says UMBC making longest road trip of season tonight at Wichita State
The Official Site says Greene named America East Player of the Week
Inside Lacrosse announces Retrievers selected to finish 2nd in America East
MT. ST. MARY’S BASKETBALL:
The Official Site says ‘Eers jump out to 13-0 lead, hold on for win over Navy
Frederick News Post’s Stan Goldberg profiles Fred Carter following Saturday’s jersey retirement
MT. ST. MARY’S LACROSSE:
The Official Site announces Mountaineers selected to finish 5th in MAAC
The Official Site’s Spencer Fordin says MacPhail not rushing to make trades
The Sun’s Jeff Zrebiec says Guthrie, Markakis, B-Rob won’t be traded-but who knows about anyone else
The Sun’s Jeff Zrebiec and Dan Connolly say MacPhail getting plenty of Bedard interest
The Sun’s Jeff Zrebiec and Dan Connolly say Patterson probably not returning to Charm City
The Sun’s Rock Kubatko says O’s still waiting on Cabrera deal before Tejada can be moved
Washington Post’s Dave Sheinin says Bedard value should be same as Santana
Tacoma News Tribune’s Larry LaRue says Mariners interested in Bedard
Dempsey’s Army’s “hrb” says Meetings Birds’ most important in 10+ years
Earl Weaver Rules’ Louie Miller disappointed if Bedard won’t re-sign
Oriole Magic’s Heather Irvin says Arrieta star of AFL Birds
Oriole Post’s “Maryland Orioles Fan” says O’s will have plenty Bedard business
Oriole Post’s “Maryland Orioles Fan” says Bedard fallback plan to Santana for teams
LA Times’ Mike DiGiovanna says Birds believed to want Weaver, Wood for Tejada
MetsBlog’s Matthew Cerrone says Murti thinks Mets ‘close’ to Bedard deal
Toronto Globe and Mail’s Jeff Blair says Canadian Bedard attractive option for Jays
MLB.com’s Jim Molony says O’s want 3-4 prospects for Bedard
The Loss Column’s Neal Shaffer reminisces about new Indian Rick Bauer
The Wayward Oriole is waiting for trade news
Fanhouse’s “Mullet” says Bedard won’t be cheap for teams interested
Inside The Warehouse’s Michael Hollman names Zach Dillon organization’s #40 prospect (must subscribe)
The Examiner’s Mike Peters says Blast try to move past difficult weekend
The Examiner’s Mike Peters says Cabral reached 800 point club over rough weekend for Blast
Inside Lacrosse announces Greyhounds selected to finish 4th in ECAC
The Official Site says Hairston’s double-double not enough as Tigers fall at Delaware
Delaware Official Site says four Hens in double digits in first win of season
Inside Lacrosse announces Tigers selected to win America East
HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL:
The Sun’s Milton Kent says MPSSAA head doesn’t think TV deal harmful
The Sun’s Pat O’Malley picks Dunbar, River Hill, etc to win state titles
SOME QUICK THOUGHTS:
-Want to know what the Pats’ win meant to AD? In an on-field interview with ESPN after the game, AD said if they were going to lose, he wanted it to be to “anybody but (the Ravens).” AD has already proven himself to be correct, and if the things he told SI weren’t evident to most of us in Monday Night’s game, I don’t know what it will take to prove it.
-What record will the Ravens finish with? I’ll say 6-10. But frankly, they could lose out-yes, including the Dolphins.
-I’m not concerned about the Maryland Women’s loss to Rutgers. They’ve won enough games over ranked teams so far this season that they can deal with a close road loss.
-Barry Gossett continues to deliver when it comes to helping the University of Maryland. I can only pray that other alumni are watching what he’s doing.
-If the Terps do finish 4th in the ACC in Lacrosse this season, Dave Cottle might be on his way out. They need someone who can win NCAA Championships, especially with Petro getting his 2nd at Hopkins last season.
-How was Fred Carter’s jersey not retired at Mount before this weekend? That’s embarrassing! Maybe Carter was keeping a hex over the ‘Eers, as they’re 2-0 since honoring Carter.
-At least the reported Mets offer for Bedard included pitching. I’m glad MacPhail is working to get the most they can for him. It doesn’t solve ANY of the organization’s problems; but I still like to see good things.
-No live sports picks for tonight. Let’s recover. There’s Sunday Night Football, the Terps’ ACC Home opener, a PBA Tour stop, the Blast at home, and even more still to come this week. Take the night off and get ready. If you NEED a local sports fix, there’s a link on UMBC’s website to a radio broadcast of their game with perennial “Bracket Buster” Wichita State.
Talk to you tomorrow.