10 Years, 10 Moments

Ravens At 10 : The Highlights

September 11, 2005|By JAMISON HENSLEY | JAMISON HENSLEY,SUN STAFF

1. JAN. 28, 2001

Defense is dominant in Super Bowl victory

Ray Lewis was named Most Valuable Player as the Ravens delivered their final argument as one of the game's best defenses in a 34-7 triumph over the New York Giants. A Ravens defense that had four shutouts in the regular season would have recorded one in the Super Bowl if not for Ron Dixon's kickoff return. In shutting out New York's offense, the Ravens limited the Giants to 152 yards of total offense and intercepted Kerry Collins four times. "We are the best ever, the best ever right now," Lewis said after the victory.

2. SEPT. 14, 2003

Jamal Lewis sets NFL rushing mark

The Ravens' running back hammered his way to 295 yards rushing against the Cleveland Browns, shattering the three-year-old mark of the Cincinnati Bengals' Corey Dillon by 17 yards. Three days earlier, Lewis predicted the feat during a phone call with Cleveland linebacker Andra Davis, saying he would have a "career day" if given 30 carries. Lewis, who carried exactly 30 times and scored two touchdowns, was a picture of grace and power, bouncing off linebackers and sidestepping defensive backs.

3. JAN. 14, 2001

Sharpe scores as Ravens win AFC championship

As six-point underdogs to the Oakland Raiders, the Ravens got their big touchdown on a 96-yard catch-and-run by Shannon Sharpe. Pinned back to their end zone on third-and-18, quarterback Trent Dilfer saw the blitz and hit Sharpe on a quick slant. Getting big blocks from wide receivers Brandon Stokley and Patrick Johnson, Sharpe dodged a tackle and ran down the middle of the field for longest pass play in NFL playoff history.

4. APRIL 20, 1996

Ravens draft cornerstones Ogden and Ray Lewis

The future of the franchise was set when the Ravens selected two potential Hall of Fame players in their first draft. With the fourth overall pick, the Ravens resisted the temptation of filling a need at running back with Lawrence Phillips and instead selected Jonathan Ogden, a mammoth offensive tackle from UCLA. The Ravens then used the 26th pick of the first round on Lewis, an undersized linebacker out of Miami. Ogden and Lewis have combined for 15 Pro Bowl selections, ranking among the best at their position for the past decade.

5. JAN. 7, 2001

Blocked field goal leads to playoff upset

Breaking a 10-10 tie in the fourth quarter, Keith Washington deflected a field-goal try by the Titans' Al Del Greco and Anthony Mitchell returned it 90 yards for a touchdown. Washington's helmet was knocked off on that attempt, but he still managed to deflect the ball high into the air. Mitchell pulled it down at the Ravens' 10-yard line, then cut inside Del Greco around midfield and raced untouched as the Ravens beat the Tennessee Titans, the AFC's top-seeded team.

6. NOV. 7, 2004

Reed returns interception 106 yards

After a potential game-tying touchdown pass bounced off the hands of Browns tight end Aaron Shea, Ed Reed caught it off his shoe tops in the end zone and ran it back for a touchdown to seal the 27-13 victory. Browns quarterback Jeff Garcia had put a scare into the Ravens by driving 54 yards, moving Cleveland to the Ravens' 5-yard line with 45 seconds remaining. But Reed, the eventual NFL Defensive Player of the Year, turned the game around as he did all season, making the interception and sprinting up the right sideline for the sixth touchdown of his career.

7. NOV. 23, 2003

Wright leads comeback win

Hours before Anthony Wright's wife was induced into labor, the one-time third-string quarterback staged the biggest comeback in team history, rallying the Ravens to a pulsating 44-41 overtime victory against the Seattle Seahawks. Wright threw for a career-best 319 yards and four touchdowns as the Ravens wiped away a 17-point fourth-quarter deficit. He directed a 55-yard drive in overtime, setting up Matt Stover's 42-yard field goal with 6:32 left in the extra session.

8. JAN. 19, 1999

Billick hired as coach

Before the loquacious Brian Billick arrived, the Ravens were 16-31-1 in the club's first three seasons under coach Ted Marchibroda, never producing a winning season and never finishing higher than fourth in the AFC Central. With Billick in charge, the Ravens have gone from perpetual loser to winner, compiling a 61-42 record, including the postseason, and winning a Super Bowl in January 2001. Luring Billick here was a significant move for the Ravens because it meant that they beaten out Cleveland for the coordinator of the record-setting Minnesota Vikings offense.

9. SEPT. 30, 2002

McAlister's play is NFL's longest

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