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Third down the key for Ravens so far

The Ravens took a 10-7 lead into the locker room at halftime due in large part to their play on third down on both offense and defense.

The Patriots entered today's game ranked last in the league when it comes to stopping teams on third down, and so far, the Ravens are 3-of-8 on third-down conversions.

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On defense, the Ravens have allowed Tom Brady and the Patriots to convert just one third down so far on five attempts. They're doing it by shutting down the short passing game. They're sending their defensive backs downhill when Patriots receivers try to sit down in coverage with curl routes, and they have closed hard to break up passes or force drops with heavy footsteps.

Mr. Third Down, Wes Welker, has just one catch for five yards.

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So much for the Patriots not missing a beat without Randy Moss running nine routes.

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