What they're saying about the Ravens

Media roundup

December 14, 2010

Here's a look at what other media outlets are saying about the Ravens' 34-28 overtime victory against the Houston Texans in Week 14:

• SI.com's Don Banks agrees with a lot of Ravens fans -- the defense isn't what it used to be.

After watching Baltimore blow a 21-point lead in the fourth quarter --giving up touchdown drives of 99 and 95 yards -- it should finally dawn on everyone that the Ravens' once-dominant defense is no longer deserving of that designation.

Houston produced a mind-boggling 301 yards of offense in the second half, with the Texans running 51 plays compared to Baltimore's 16. Matt Schaub's 62nd and final pass of the night was intercepted by Ravens cornerback Josh Wilson for a 12-yard game-winning touchdown return in overtime, but I don't know if I've ever seen a defense more out of gas than Baltimore's in the game's waning moments.

• ESPN.com's James Walker writes about several highlights from the game, including Terrell Suggs' recent dominance.

Suggs registered at least one sack for the fifth time in six games. Suggs recorded a sack against [Texans quarterback Matt] Schaub in addition to four tackles. Coming off a down year in 2009, Suggs now is playing at a Pro Bowl level and leads the Ravens with 10 sacks.

• Paul Kuharsky of ESPN.com asks a simple question about the opening kickoff to the second half.

What I want to know: How many guys on the Texans' kick coverage team got a hand on David Reed during his 103-yard kickoff return for a touchdown that put Baltimore up 28-7?

• Speaking of that play, Yahoo Sports' Matthew J. Darnell writes:

Some people refer to this play as a "David Reed kickoff return for a touchdown." I prefer to call it "The time three Texans decided it would be more fun to just tackle each other."

• ESPN.com's Stats & Info blog talks about Joe Flacco's performance against the Texans.

Flacco continued his steady play of late. With two touchdowns and no interceptions Monday, Flacco now has 16 touchdowns with just two interceptions in his last eight games.

Both of Flacco's touchdowns were to Derrick Mason. It was Mason's first game with multiple touchdowns since the final game of the 2003 season.

After struggling in shotgun formations through his first 12 games, Flacco completed more than 70 percent of his attempts out of shotgun Monday, including seven of his last eight to end the game. For Houston, it was more of the same Monday night. The Texans entered Week 14 having surrendered an NFL-high 13 touchdown passes out of shotgun in this season.

• Sam Khan Jr. of the Houston Chronicle discusses the Ravens' big special teams plays against the Texans.

The Texans started with poor field position on several occasions. Four times they started inside their own 11-yard line, and they never started beyond their own 35. Meanwhile, Baltimore started twice in Texans territory and only once started inside its 20.

"Field position is a big key," receiver and punt returner Jacoby Jones said. "That punter (Sam Koch) had a great game and had some great inside-the-10 punts. Their special teams stepped up."

• The Houston Chronicle's Jerome Solomon says the Texans once again found a way to lose.

Early in the game the Texans didn't play like a team whose back was against the wall. They played like a team without a backbone.

They played hard. They never gave up. They kept fighting.

That is all nice, but the most important thing the Houston Texans did was lose. Does it really matter how?

• Looking ahead to next week, The (New Orleans) Times-Picayune's Mike Triplett writes that New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton believes the weather could be a factor.

Payton said Sunday's game will serve as a good test for the Saints heading toward a possible playoff berth, both because of the opponent and the conditions they'll face. For the second time in three weeks, the Saints will have to battle some frigid conditions outdoors at Baltimore.

[Compiled by Dean Jones Jr.]

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