A pick and a kick

McAlister, Stover big plays lift Ravens to 3-0 for 1st time

Ravens Gameday

Ravens 15 Browns 14

September 25, 2006|By Jamison Hensley

HOW THE RAVENS WON Showing great resilience, new Ravens quarterback Steve McNair put his stamp on the team by leading it back from an 11-point deficit in the fourth quarter. McNair was 10-for-16 for 91 yards in the pivotal fourth quarter after going 13-for-25 for 173 yards in the first three quarters.

PLAY OF THE GAME With the Ravens desperately needing a defensive stop late in the fourth quarter, cornerback Chris McAlister jumped in front of receiver Braylon Edwards and made the game-turning interception in the end zone. By not allowing a touchdown, the Ravens were able to win the game with a field goal for the first 3-0 start in team history.

HOME SWEET HOME Kicker Matt Stover, the only remaining player left from the Ravens' move from Cleveland, converted field goals from 32, 43 and 52 yards. The 52-yarder that came with 20 seconds left in the game - which was aided by a 25-mph wind - was the longest game-winner in his 17-year career.

DEFENSIVE STAND After allowing its first touchdowns of the season, the Ravens' defense showed why it remains one of the most dominant in the NFL. In the second half, the defense gave up 91 yards and allowed the Browns to move past their own 31-yard line only once.

THEY SAID IT "That drive was different than any drive I've been a part of on this team. Just the look in each other's eyes and to see everybody was focused and knew what we needed to do. To be able to get that win, that's a huge growth for our team. It's going to pay dividends for the next two, three games we play." - tight end Todd Heap on the Ravens' final 12-play, 47-yard drive that led to the game-winning field goal.

COMING ATTTRACTION For the first time this season, the Ravens will face a team that has won a game when they play the San Diego Chargers (2-0) at M&T Bank Stadium. The Chargers have one of the NFL's best players on offense (running back LaDainian Tomlinson) and defense (linebacker and ex-Maryland standout Shawne Merriman). The series is tied 2-2, with the Ravens winning the last meeting, 24-10, in 2003.

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