Reporting Jerry Coleman
The Ravens 30-9 victory over the previously unbeaten Houston Texans comes on the heels of an interception return, along with a special teams and a rushing touchdown. Throughout the week, the team was positive and not down even though it was known that star RB Ray Rice would miss his first game since 2008, with a hip flexor.
Those two scores- were the 1st time the Ravens have recorded a punt return and interception for a TD in the same contest since 2002. And as Coach John Harbaugh pointed out: “It’s 14 points, which is huge. Anytime you’re able to score 14 points – I don’t care how you do it, especially in quick fashion like that – is a tremendous turning point.” The Ravens are now 2-1 and have not given up a touchdown for the second straight week. With so many different faces on this team, it will take time for the new arrivals to find that chemistry, “You know, it’s hard to put a timetable on that. We feel like we can be a great defense. We’re still working towards that. We talked about this last night. We do feel like we’re as far along as we could possibly be right now with this group. I’d say on both sides of the ball, as far along as we can possibly be with the new group at this time.” Said Harbaugh .
Baltimore was down early 6-0, but it did not take long for them to take control. With 2:39 left in the first half, Daryl Smith would intercept Matt Schaub, and return it for a 37-yard touchdown. His first career “pick 6 “. “Each week, we want to concentrate on getting better, and that’s what we’ve been doing. And each week, we’ll grow together, we’ll gain more chemistry, we’ll learn to trust each other more, and I think we’ve done that the last two weeks, and we just have to continue to do that.” Said Smith , who has taken Ray Lewis’s position.
The Texans have only beaten the Ravens once in the last four seasons including the playoffs. The lone win was a 42-13 contest last year in Houston, however, with this loss they fell to 0-4 in Baltimore. The impact of the special teams was felt when Tandon Doss who was cut at the end of training camp but re-signed due to the injury of Aaron Mellette, returned an 82-yard punt for a TD, which was his first career punt return for a score.
On the same day that the team was honoring Ray Lewis in their Ring of Honor and the return of Ed Reed, the Ravens looked like the old defensive powerhouse they have been known to be. Since 1996, they’re 42-7 all-time when tallying a defensive TD in a game. After the ceremony was over at halftime Lewis addressed the media one final time. “I thought I got away from [the media]. But no, it’s good to be back home. That’s always one thing I’ve said about me being here for 17 years, is that I got a chance to lay my head in one place. When you can have that, that’s the foundation of a legacy. So to be back where it all started from is probably one of the greatest gifts I could ever give myself.”
PHOTO GALLERY: Ravens Defeat Texans 30-9