Ravens Central

ON THE RAVENS

The Kickoff

January 09, 2007|By MIKE PRESTON

The playoffs went as expected, but if I played for the San Diego Chargers, I would be a little concerned. The New England Patriots have played well lately, and Tom Brady looked good Sunday - because he was given the time. New England might be a little light on talent, especially at wide receiver, but Patriots coach Bill Belichick schemes well.

As for the Colts game, I've lost more respect for Kansas City Chiefs coach Herm Edwards. I'll give the Colts credit because they did play great run defense, and safety Bob Sanders makes a difference. But the Chiefs refused to go over the top even when the Colts crammed seven, eight and even nine players in the box. I think Ravens quarterback Steve McNair is smart enough to take advantage of that situation.

It's a competitive final four, and that's what makes it exciting and interesting. There is no clear-cut favorite, but I still wouldn't be surprised to see the AFC championship being played in Baltimore. I still have my doubts about San Diego quarterback Philip Rivers. Of the four remaining quarterbacks, he is the weakest and has the least experience.

mike.preston@baltsun.com

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