Hollow Victory

Ravens close dismal season with win

losing streak stops at 9

Ravens 27 Steelers 21

Ravens Report

December 31, 2007|By JAMISON HENSLEY

FAREWELL FOR OGDEN? As the Ravens celebrated the end of a nine-game losing streak, they might have been saying goodbye to one of the best players in franchise history. Offensive tackle Jonathan Ogden has said he will take a month to decide whether to retire, but it seemed as if the probable Hall of Famer played his last game. During the final moments, he was behind the bench taking pictures with his wife and 2-year-old son.

RUNNING BACK AUDITION With Willis McGahee out with cracked ribs, Musa Smith and Cory Ross took advantage of their opportunities. Smith, a third-down back this season, had 83 yards and a 2-yard touchdown run in his first start. Ross, seeing his first action as a running back, had 72 yards on 12 carries, including a 32-yard touchdown run.

PITTMAN FINALLY STEPPING UP Cornerback David Pittman has been criticized for not playing with confidence, but he made a timely interception in the first half to set up Matt Stover's field goal. Then, he ended the Steelers' final drive by picking off Charlie Batch's pass with 1:04 left. Pittman is still a work in progress, but the Ravens have to be pleased he finally showed them something.

OVERCOMING THE ATMOSPHERE The Ravens won despite playing in what was a marginal home game. About half of the announced 71,353 were Steelers fans, who had little reason to wave their Terrible Towels. The Ravens also broke their trend of playing poorly in bad weather. With a steady downpour throughout the game, the Ravens weren't the ones making careless turnovers.

COMING ATTRACTION The Ravens have the No. 8 pick in the NFL draft, which will be held in four months. The top 10 prospects are:

DT Glenn Dorsey, LSU

OT Jake Long, Michigan

RB Darren McFadden, Arkansas

DE Chris Long, Virginia

QB Matt Ryan, Boston College

LB James Laurinaitis, Ohio State

DT Sedrick Ellis, Southern California

LB Dan Connor, Penn State

OT Ryan Clady, Boise State

CB Mike Jenkins, South Florida

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