On Sunday my wife and I had our first opportunity to attend a Ravens game at M&T Stadium in downtown Baltimore. The day could not have been more perfect: 68°, sunshine, moderate humidity. You’d think this was San Diego, not Baltimore.
We entered through the Unitas gate with its brass statue of the great Colts QB. For good luck we touched the statue's shoes which were already polished to a high sheen by the hopeful Raven fans.
The stadium was filled with purple and black, the majority of fans decked out in team jerseys. My favorite jerseys were 00 E.A. Poe and 19 Johnny U, but the predominate names were Ray Lewis and Todd Heap.
While the Ravens found themselves outplayed for most of the game, their offensive line getting pushed around by the San Diego defense, they still managed two short touchdown drives, one at the beginning of the game and one at the end, that proved to be the difference. The Ravens defense was also bullied a bit, but performed well enough in the red zone to only allow a touchdown and two field goals.
This is the second week in a row that the Ravens won a game they should have lost. By all rights the Ravens record should be 2-2 instead of 4-0. But that is what a veteran quarterback like Steve McNair brings to the team. While he is well past his prime, there's enough gas left in the tank and enough savvy to pull victory from the jaws of defeat. He, and their spiritual leader and head cheerleader Ray Lewis, have this team believing in itself again.
The great thing about living in the Washington-Baltimore metropolitan area is that we have two good teams to root for, and the TV schedules have finally been synchronized so one team doesn’t black out the other.