The Baltimore Sun



Steve McNair makes this offense look a lot better than it is most of the time. He got a lot of pressure early in the game, and simply stepped aside of the rush, or up in the pocket. Some of his errant throws were the result of trying to make plays because the Bills did a good job of covering the Ravens receivers.

Running backs


Jamal Lewis had 69 yards rushing on 20 carries, but he still looks indecisive at times. There seems to be a confidence problem especially when running to the right side. Fullback Ovie Mughelli had five catches for 49 yards.

Offensive line


The Ravens were without right guard Keydrick Vincent and left tackle Adam Terry. The Bills got pressure on McNair, but he moves around enough to gain time. The Ravens had some time-consuming drives, but this wasn't one of this group's better efforts.



Tight end Todd Heap was a factor over the middle and receiver Derrick Mason was effective in the short routes underneath. But Mason also dropped a pass and stopped running on one route. Rookie Demetrius Williams short-armed a pass over the middle in the second quarter.

Defensive line


The Ravens shut down the Bills' rushing game, allowing 39 yards. End Trevor Pryce was credited with only one tackle, but he was a force inside along with tackles Haloti Ngata and Kelly Gregg. Gregg and end Terrell Suggs each finished with three tackles.



Buffalo, which had allowed 44 sacks before yesterday's game, couldn't handle the Ravens' blitzes. Inside linebackers Bart Scott and Ray Lewis forced quarterback J.P. Losman to move in the pocket numerous times. Outside linebacker Adalius Thomas knocked down two passes.



Chris McAlister returned an interception 31 yards for a touchdown that turned the game in the Ravens' favor. McAlister played well, but fellow cornerback Samari Rolle gave up a 44-yard touchdown in the third quarter. This group is sometimes suspect, especially with passes over the middle.

Special teams


Matt Stover was 4-for-4 on field-goal attempts and punter Sam Koch kept Buffalo pinned down. Returner Cory Ross showed some explosion, but he did fumble a punt. Gerome Sapp and Alex Bannister each had two tackles, but the Ravens allowed an average of 21.7 yards on six kickoff returns.

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