Defensive coach on the prowl for answers Lewis says team did in first three quarters what it didn't in fourth



November 11, 1996|By Vito Stellino | Vito Stellino,SUN STAFF

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Marvin Lewis is looking for answers.

The Ravens' defensive coordinator, who switched from a 4-3 to a 3-4 last week because he's so short of players, saw his defense contain the Jaguars for three quarters and then give up 17 points in the fourth quarter on drives of 89, 90 and 66 yards.

Lewis said the Jaguars did the same things in the second half that the Ravens stopped in the first half.

"You have to learn how to finish," he said. "You have to make the same plays throughout the game. In the two-minute situation, you can't make errors. You can't make mistakes."

Lewis said Mark Brunell is tough to defense because he's mobile and the receivers adjust to his moving.

The Ravens couldn't stop him when they had to.

"Good players got to win the game for you. You've got enough young guys and guys who haven't been through the wars. Your good players, your older experienced players have got to make the plays to win the games. That's what it comes down to," he said.

"We've played better. I keep saying that, but we don't get the satisfaction of winning the football games. We're still making progress. We're learning how to play together. We're going to have tough times, which will make us stronger in the end. But they deserve to win and soon or later we're going to step up and make these plays and win the game," he said.

"I don't know whether we run out of gas or what it is. At the end, you've got to go back to the fundamentals and be sharp. We've got to perform," he said.

"The thing we keep talking about when they come off the field is, hey, you've just got to keep going. You've got to take a deep breath. We're going to have to go back out. They gave us an 11-point lead with six minutes to go. You can't ask for more. You can't win any games like that," he said.

Tony Jones: Not a 3-7 team

Offensive lineman Tony Jones was distraught after the game.

"I don't even have words to describe it. Football, you always believe if you go out and work real hard and do the things right, you should win. We're doing extra work and we're playing so hard that you don't even feel like walking after the game and you lose, you don't even have the answers for it. I give Jacksonville credit for the win, but I can't say they're better than us. I think this is one of the best offensive lines I've been around. There isn't anybody who can stand up with us and play with us. We played well enough to win the game, but we didn't win," he said.

He added, "You've just got to try to keep working harder. This is a good organization. We have some good players around here. We deserve to win. This is not a 3-7 football team. We deserve to smile and be happy and win, but we're not because we're not winning."

On whether the team is out of contention, he said, "It'll be real hard to make the playoffs. I don't know if 9-7 will get us there or not. We're still going to fight. We're not going to give up because we deserve to win. We deserve to be happy. Right now, I don't know where we'll go from there. We're not going to cash in the season and quit. We needed this game and we didn't get it."

No consolation for Goad

Defensive lineman Tim Goad took little consolation in the effort the team gave compared to last week against Cincinnati.

"This one, we didn't give up. We fought right down to the end. We gave everything we could give. Last week, we didn't. Each loss is tough to swallow. But this one is a little tougher than last week because we fought right down to the end. We didn't make the plays," he said.

He added, "There's only one thing in this league and that's winning. They don't care if you come close or play a good game. In this league, the bottom line is winning. We haven't done that in two weeks."

Goad said they talked at halftime about not blowing the lead for the second straight week.

"We talked about at halftime we were going to treat this as if the score was 0-0," he said. "Jacksonville has a lot of weapons."

Clark makes debut

Linebacker Sedric Clark, who was plucked off the New Orleans practice squad on Oct. 30, made his Ravens debut as a defensive lineman so the Ravens could utilize his quickness against Brunell.

"He keeps you guessing all the time," Clark said.

It was a busy game for him because he was playing special teams, too.

He was drafted by the Raiders on the seventh round out of Tulsa and was cut. He spent time on the Rams, Jaguars and Saints practice squads.

Extra points

Ravens coach Ted Marchibroda tried to be upbeat. "A team that fights like that, you can't ask for anything more than that," he said. The Ravens have been underdogs six times and have lost all six, although they covered the spread against the Colts and Jaguars. Jaguars tickets are sold out for the team's first three years, but there were 8,372 no-shows yesterday. The attendance was 64,628. The Ravens have caught the Pittsburgh Steelers in one category. They're the only team to lose to the Jaguars in Jacksonville in their first two years. The Jaguars have TC won eight games in their two years, three of them against the Ravens-Browns. They swept the Browns last year and upset the Browns in Cleveland last year before the move to Baltimore was announced. The Ravens have averaged 29.7 points the past six games and have won only one of them.

Pub Date: 11/11/96

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