Written by Jayme Sweigart for NFLFemale.com
I’m so EXCITED and I just CAN’T HIDE IT!!! I know I’m not alone in this mentality as all of Baltimore is still on an emotional high following the Ravens win over New England in the AFC Championship game on Sunday. The Ravens are going to the SUPER BOWL!!!!
The word “numb” got thrown around a bit on various social networking sites as members of the Ravens Organization described their feelings after the spectacular win in Foxborough.
Wide Receiver, Torrey Smith (@TorreySmithWR) took to Twitter on Monday morning saying “…it still feels unreal #blessed.” Heavy underdogs once again, the Ravens were able to overcome those odds and were the victors, and will be representing the AFC in New Orleans on February 3.
The first half of the game left a lot to be desired when the Ravens went to the locker room down 13-7. Baltimore’s only score of the half came when Rice rushed 2 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter. New England’s Gostkowski kicked field goals from 31 yards, and 25 yards and Brady had a 1 yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Wes Welker.
Something must have happened during halftime, however, because the Ravens emerged from the locker room a new team. Energized and hungry for a win, the Ravens went on to score 3 more touchdowns; a 5 yard touchdown pass to tight end Dennis Pitta, and 2 touchdown passes, one for 3 yards and one for 11 yards to wide receiver Anquan Boldin. The Ravens defense was awakened as well as they kept the Patriots at bay and did not allow another score for the rest of the game. In the fourth quarter, the Baltimore defense was also responsible for causing all 3 of New England’s turnovers (the only turnovers of the game, I might add).
Safety Bernard Pollard forced running back Stevan Ridley to fumble and defensive end Arthur Jones recovered it for Baltimore. Then linebacker Dannell Ellerbee intercepted a pass intended for Aaron Hernandez. Cornerback Cary Williams hammered the final nail in the Patriots coffin with an interception in the end zone on a pass that was intended for wide receiver Brandon Lloyd. The Baltimore sideline erupted, and the streets of Baltimore filled as the Ravens took the field in victory formation as quarterback Joe Flacco took the final knee and the Ravens were declared the 2013 AFC Champions.
OJ Brigance, Baltimore’s Senior Advisor to Player Development, was on hand to present the Ravens with the Lamar Hunt trophy to the Ravens. Brigance, a former linebacker for the Ravens, recorded the very first special teams tackle in Super Bowl XXXV, the one and only other time the Ravens have been to the big game. Confined to a wheelchair as a result of his battle with ALS, otherwise known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, Brigance, with the help of a Dynavox, a communication device that translates his thoughts, had this to say:
“Congratulations to the Baltimore Ravens. Your resiliency has outlasted your adversity. You are the AFC Champions. You are my mighty men. With God, all things are possible.”
Needless to say, it was an emotional moment for the Ravens organization and Ravens fans everywhere. Coach John Harbaugh also presented Brigance with a game ball.
Several records were broken and some stats were disrupted with the Ravens win. Joe Flacco now holds the record for road playoff wins by a starting quarterback with 6, passing Eli Manning with 5. In just 16 years of existence, the Ravens have recorded nine road playoff wins, tied with the Dallas Cowboys for second-most in NFL history. Only the Green Bay Packers have more road wins with 10. The Ravens handed the Patriots just their first home Conference Championship loss, but more impressive is the fact that this was their first loss at home with Brady as quarterback after leading at halftime. They are now 67-1.
Joe Flacco has been nearly flawless throughout the playoffs this year with 8 touchdown passes and zero interceptions. He is 51 for 93 for a total of 853 yards. His quarterback rating is 77.5 and his passer rating is 114.7. In his five years in the NFL, he has made it to AND won at least one playoff game EACH year…the only quarterback in history to do so. He exudes confidence and never seems shaken. He has emerged as this team’s leader and in my opinion, is one game away from finally reaching the elite status that he has been seeking.
The Ravens are going to the Super Bowl!! I just can’t say it enough as I’m still riding on a euphoric high. THE RAVENS ARE GOING TO THE SUPERBOWL!!! Ray Lewis will have one last dance, and will have a chance to earn a Super Bowl Ring as his retirement prize because, much to the dismay of Patriots fans everywhere, Ray Lewis’ retirement party has been rescheduled for February 3 and will be held in New Orleans.
Thanks to Jayme Sweigart and nflfemale.com