The Ravens, who won the Super Bowl on Jan. 28, 2001, opened defense of their title at what was called PSINet Stadium on Sept. 9, with a 17-6 win over the Chicago Bears. In defeating the Bears, the Ravens used the same formula that led them to the world championship: defense and an opportunistic offense. The defense kept the Bears out of the end zone, and the offense scored two touchdowns behind new quarterback Elvis Grbac.
WHAT HAPPENED: : The Ravens tied the score at 3 on a 37-yard field goal by Matt Stover as the first half ended. The Bears went back on top 6-3 in the third quarter after a fumble by Terry Allen, but Grbac hit fullback Sam Gash with a 6-yard touchdown pass late in the third quarter to put the Ravens ahead for good. Allen scored the Ravens' final touchdown in the fourth quarter to put the game out of reach.
KEY STATS: : The Ravens' defense allowed the Bears just 36 yards of total offense in the second half. ... Grbac, making his first start for the Ravens, completed 24 of 30 passes for 262 yards and a touchdown. ... The Bears limited the Ravens to just 54 yards on 30 carries. Top running back Jamal Lewis missed the game, and subsequently the whole season, because of injury. ... Jamie Sharper led the Ravens' defense with 12 tackles.
QUOTABLE: : "Anytime you get a win under your belt, you'll take it any which way. Obviously, we've got a lot of improvement to do on the offensive side of the ball. To put our defense out there as much as we did, we've got to improve on that if we want to repeat."
QUOTABLE: : "Our philosophy is they don't score, they don't win. We'll give up a field goal here and there, and you may make us mad. Just for them to get down to the red zone, we knew we had to buckle down.." - Ray Lewis, Ravens linebacker