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Ravens 2010 season recap: game by game

Week 1 – Ravens 10, Jets 9

East Rutherford, N.J. – New Meadowlands Stadium

The Ravens opened the 2010 season with a suffocating defensive performance against former defensive coordinator and current New York Jets coach Rex Ryan in a 10-9 win.

The Ravens turned the ball over three times in their first four possessions, but overcame the giveaways because of strong defense. Baltimore limited New York to only 176 total yards and three field goals while linebacker Terrell Suggs led the Ravens' defense with four tackles, half a sack and a forced fumble.

"Our defense was lights out," coach John Harbaugh said. "They were put in some really tough situations. That's about as good a defensive performance that the Ravens have ever played."

Running back Willis McGahee accounted for the team's lone touchdown on a 1-yard run with only a few seconds remaining in the first half. Quarterback Joe Flacco completed 20 of 38 passes for 248 yards and one interception, and kicker Billy Cundiff booted a 25-yard field goal in the third quarter.

Player of the game: Terrell Suggs – Four tackles, two solo, half a sack and one forced fumble.

Week 2 – Ravens 10, Bengals 15

Cincinnati – Paul Brown Stadium

Quarterback Joe Flacco threw a career-high four interceptions as the Ravens' offense crumbled in a 15-10 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals.

Flacco could not find a rhythm in one of the worst games of his three-year career, going 17 of 39 passing for 154 yards.

"I don't think anyone feels good about it. It was a tough one for me," Flacco said. "We're 1-1 with 14 games left. We feel like we have a pretty good team. We just have to go out there and prove it."

Baltimore's only touchdown came when Flacco connected with receiver Derrick Mason on a 31-yard touchdown pass on the opening drive of the second half. Minus that series, Flacco's quarterback rating was a dismal 23.8.

The Ravens' defense did its part, preventing the Bengals from reaching the end zone as the home team relied on five field goals from kicker Mike Nugent.

Player of the game: Chris Carr – Six tackles, five solo.

Week 3 – Ravens 24, Browns 17

Baltimore. – M&T Bank Stadium

Newly acquired wide receiver Anquan Boldin caught three touchdown passes and quarterback Joe Flacco rebounded from an ugly Week-2 showing to lead the Ravens to a 24-17 win over the Cleveland Browns in the home opener.

Flacco completed 22 of 31 passes for 262 yards, connecting with Boldin — who recorded 142 receiving yards — for all three scores.

The Ravens' defense was not as lucky, as Browns running back Peyton Hillis rushed for 144 yards and one touchdown on 22 carries. Cleveland staked a 17-14 lead when quarterback Seneca Wallace found tight end Ben Wallace in the end zone for a 1-yard touchdown pass to start the fourth quarter, but Flacco answered on the next possession with a 69-yard drive that culminated with a 27-yard touchdown pass to Boldin.

"You look at last week and we gave up five field goals," linebacker Ray Lewis said. "You look at this week, and our offense bails us out. I think that's what builds a team for later in the year."

Player of the game: Anquan Boldin – eight receptions for 142 yards and three touchdown catches.

Week 4 – Ravens 17, Steelers 14

Pittsburgh – Heinz Field

T.J. Houshmandzadeh caught an 18-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Joe Flacco with 32 seconds remaining in the game to secure a 17-14, come-from-behind victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers.

The Ravens trailed by four points when Flacco orchestrated a 40-yard drive in 68 seconds for the winning score. His game-by-game progression continued in Pittsburgh as he completed 24 of 37 passes for 256 yards and took a leadership role in the final moments with the game on the line.

"I think there are going to be a lot of defining moments for Joe, but this is going to be one of them," coach John Harbaugh said. "This is going to be one that all the Ravens fans are going to remember for a long time."

Player of the game: Joe Flacco – 24 of 37 passing for 256 yards and one touchdown pass.

Week 5 – Ravens 31, Broncos 17

Baltimore – M&T Bank Stadium

Running back Ray Rice ran for 133 yards and two touchdowns as the Ravens dismantled the Denver Broncos, 31-17.

All four Baltimore touchdowns came on the ground and four Ravens combined to rush for 233 yards. Rice had a pair of 1-yard touchdown runs and quarterback Joe Flacco charged into the end zone with a 1-yard run that capped a nine-play, 73-yard drive in the first quarter. Kicker Billy Cundiff booted a 37-yard field goal in the second quarter and Willis McGahee capped the scoring with a 30-yard touchdown run in the fourth.

"It was an important win for us to get where we're going as a football team," coach John Harbaugh said. "This is a game we really had to win at home, against an AFC team."

The Ravens' defense allowed a pair of long touchdown passes to Denver's Brandon Lloyd, who hauled in scoring receptions from 42 and 44 yards. But that was it. Aside from a 38-yard field goal from Matt Prater, the Broncos controlled the ball for only 23 minutes and 43 seconds compared to the Ravens 36:17.

Player of the game: Ray Rice – 133 yards rushing on 27 carries and two touchdowns. Four receptions for 26 yards.

Week 6 – Patriots 23, Ravens 20, OT

Foxborough, Mass. – Gillette Stadium

The Ravens squandered a 10-point fourth-quarter lead to the New England Patriots and lost, 23-20, on Stephen Gostkowski's 35-yard field goal in overtime.

Baltimore controlled the first three quarters, producing 296 total yards in that span to 81 total yards in the fourth. Having kept Patriots quarterback Tom Brady under wraps for much of the afternoon, the Ravens' defense let off the pressure late. Brady threw for 156 yards on 16 of 24 passes during the fourth quarter and overtime for the 30th game-winning comeback of his career.

"When I get into the fourth quarter and we're up 20-10 against Tom Brady, I'm still nervous," linebacker Jarret Johnson said. "You can't relax and you can't settle. We did and we let them back into the game."

Joe Flacco compiled three quarters of inspired football, completing 27 of 35 passes for 285 yards and two touchdowns. But the Ravens' quarterback was not as aggressive late in the game. Flacco threw for 59 yards on seven of 12 passes in the fourth quarter and overtime, and targeted a receiver only four times in that span.

Player of the game: Derrick Mason – eight receptions for 100 yards.

Week 7 – Ravens 37, Bills 34, OT

Baltimore – M&T Bank Stadium

The Ravens were on the verge of an embarrassing loss to the winless Buffalo Bills when Ray Lewis stripped the ball from Bills tight end Shawn Nelson in overtime to set up a game-winning, 38-yard field goal in a 37-34 victory.

On a day when the team honored the record-breaking 2000 Super Bowl Champion squad, this Ravens group made dubious history of its own. The Ravens' defense allowed 506 total yards — the most in nearly a decade — and Bills journeyman quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick passed for 374 yards.

"I'm not going to stand up here and say that we played well," coach John Harbaugh said. "I'm disappointed in the yards. I'm disappointed with the points. I'm disappointed with the coverage. I'm disappointed with the pressure in some ways. We have to play better than that to be the team we want to be, but I'm proud of the win."

Tight end Todd Heap hauled in two of Joe Flacco's three touchdown passes on the day, and receiver Anquan Boldin finished with six receptions for 92 yards and one touchdown.

Player of the game: Ray Lewis – 14 tackles, 13 solo, one sack, one fumble

Week 9 – Ravens 26, Dolphins 10

Baltimore – M&T Bank Stadium

After struggling to close out their past two games, the Ravens came up with a big fourth quarter stand that preserved a 26-10 victory over the Miami Dolphins. The Ravens intercepted Miami quarterback Chad Henne twice in the final period, including Josh Wilson's pick with 35 seconds left that ended the game.

"You always want the onus to be on you," Wilson said. "It's time for us to step up. Offense did what they did. Now, it's time for us to in and end the game."

Running back Ray Rice finished with 180 total yards – 83 yards on 22 carries, 97 yards on seven receptions – and set the tone for the Raven's controlling offensive scheme. Baltimore held possession of the ball for 38 minutes, 22 seconds and dominated the fourth quarter with 11 minutes of possession. Joe Flacco completed 20 of 27 passes for 266 yards and touchdown passes of 32 and 12 yards to Willis McGahee and Derek Mason, respectively.

Player of the game: Ray Rice – 180 total yards, including 83 yards rushing. Also hauled in a 34-yard reception in the third quarter.

Week 10 – Falcons 26, Ravens 21

Atlanta – Georgia Dome

In a showdown between the two top-drafted quarterbacks of the 2008 draft, Joe Flacco's Ravens couldn't keep up with Matt Ryan's Atlanta Falcons in a 26-21 loss.

Ryan capped an 80-yard drive late in the fourth quarter with a 33-yard touchdown pass to Roddy White with 20 seconds left to win the game. The play was disputed by a visibly angry Ravens cornerback Josh Wilson who contended that White made illegal contact with him before catching the pass and securing the go-ahead score unguarded.

With the Ravens trailing by 13 points late in the fourth quarter, Flacco engineered back-to-back touchdown-scoring drives that gave Baltimore a one-point lead. Flacco found Derrick Mason in the end zone on a six-yard touchdown pass with 5:49 remaining and targeted Heap for a 9-yard touchdown pass on the ensuing possession.

"We really came alive at the end of the game, but it wasn't enough," said Flacco, who completed 22 of 34 passes for 215 yards, three touchdowns and one interception. "You think it's your game to have, and you think it's kind of over, but it didn't work out that way."

Player of the game: Joe Flacco 22 of 34 passing for 215 yards, three touchdowns and one interception.

Week 11 – Ravens 37, Panthers 13

Charlotte, N.C. – Bank of America Stadium

Joe Flacco recorded his first 300-yard passing performance of the season and Ravens defenders returned back-to-back interceptions for touchdowns in a 37-13 drubbing of the Carolina Panthers.

Flacco began by throwing a 56-yard touchdown pass to receiver T.J. Houshmandzadeh on the second play of the Ravens' opening drive. He completed 24 of 33 passes for 301 yards in his largest offensive output since October 2009.

"Coming off the loss in Atlanta, we wanted to build on the season, play better and close out games," safety Ed Reed said. "We've got to do this as a team from start to finish if we want to be competing in late January."

Reed and cornerback Josh Wilson helped solidify the victory in the fourth quarter when they intercepted Panthers quarterback Brian St. Pierre and returned the picks for touchdowns on ensuing drives.

Player of the game: Joe Flacco – Completed 24 of 33 passes for 301 yards and one touchdown.

Week 12 – Ravens 17, Buccaneers 10

Baltimore – M&T Bank Stadium

Joe Flacco became the Ravens' all-time leader in touchdown passes in a 17-point second quarter that staked the Ravens to a 17-10 win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Flacco's 65-yard touchdown pass to Todd Heap helped him eclipse former quarterback Vinny Testaverde as the team's all-time leader in touchdown passes.

"Vinny didn't play here that long, so it's not that much of an accomplishment," Flacco said. "Hopefully I can make that a little higher for somebody else to break in the future sometime."

On the next drive, Flacco found Derrick Mason in the end zone for a 10-yard score. The Ravens' quarterback completed 25 of 35 passes for 289 yards and also threw one interception. Mason finished with eight receptions for 87 yards while running back Ray Rice racked up 129 total yards, 82 on the ground.

Player of the game: Joe Flacco – completed 25 of 35 passes for 289 yards, two touchdowns and one interception.

Week 13 – Steelers 13, Ravens 10,

Baltimore – M&T Bank Stadium

Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu's fourth-quarter sack of Joe Flacco stripped the Ravens' quarterback of the ball and set up Ben Roethlisberger for the game-winning touchdown pass in a 13-10 loss to the Steelers.

The loss ended the Ravens' winning streak at M&T Bank Stadium at an NFL-best eight games.

"It doesn't feel good," said Flacco, who finished with 266 yards and completed 17 of 33 passes. "I feel we gave this one away."

Flacco helped build the Ravens an early lead when he orchestrated a 92-yard drive in the first quarter that featured a 61-yard reception by Anquan Boldin and culminated when Boldin caught a 14-yard touchdown pass. From there, the Ravens received a 24-yard field goal from Billy Cundiff and held their lead until Roethlisberger connected with running back Isaac Redman on a nine-yard touchdown pass for the win.

The latest installment of the hard-hitting rivalry featured its standard array of jarring collisions. Roethlisberger was the recipient of a particularly violent blow when defensive tackle Haloti Ngata's left hand connected with Roethlisberger's face, causing his nose to bend and bleed.

Player of the game: Anquan Boldin – five receptions for 118 yards and one touchdown.

Week 14 – Ravens 34, Texans 28, OT

Houston – Reliant Stadium

Although the Ravens squandered a 21-point second-half lead, cornerback Josh Wilson returned a 12-yard interception for a touchdown in a 28-7 victory over the Houston Texans.

The Ravens lost their eighth fourth-quarter lead of the season when they allowed the Texans to climb back from a 21-point deficit, spurred by 15 points in the fourth quarter. The Ravens' defense – which had been shaky entering the contest – yielded Houston scoring drives of 99 and 95 yards on their final two series'.

"It's all about winning," Wilson said. "That's all we care about at the end of the day: Did we win or did we lose? It doesn't matter what the score is as long as we keep winning. If we win out, we're Super Bowl champs."

Willis McGahee rushed for only seven yards in the game, but scored Baltimore's first points on a 1-yard run in the first quarter. Then, Joe Flacco threw two touchdown passes of nine and 26 yards, respectively, to receiver Derrick Mason in the second quarter before the team built its commanding lead when rookie David Reed opened the second half with a 103-yard kickoff returned for a touchdown.

Player of the game: Josh Wilson – game-winning interception returned 12 yards for a touchdown, seven solo tackles.

Week 15 – Ravens 30, Saints 24

Baltimore – M&T Bank Stadium

Behind 233 of total yards from Ray Rice, the Ravens knocked off the defending Super Bowl champion New Orleans Saints, 30-24.

Rice went off in the second quarter, rushing for a 10-yard touchdown at the start of the period and catching a 17-yard touchdown pass from Joe Flacco on the team's next possession. Rice accumulated 153 yards on the ground and another 80 in the air to solidify one of the biggest – and most – important wins of John Harbaugh's coaching tenure.

"To beat them this late in the year when they were peaking, it just says something about our team," Rice said. "We've been making it pretty interesting, but one thing about our team is we've got a resilient group."

It was a dicey finish for Baltimore, which lost its ninth fourth-quarter lead of the season when New Orleans tied the game at 24-24 on a Drew Brees 15-yard touchdown pass to Lance Moore early in the quarter. But Ravens kicker Billy Cundiff answered with field goals of 32 and 27 yards to give the Ravens all the points they needed.

Player of the game: Ray Rice – rushed for 153 yards and one touchdown on 31 carries and caught five passes for 80 yards and one touchdown.

Week 16 – Ravens 20, Browns 10

Cleveland – Cleveland Browns Stadium

Ed Reed intercepted two passes by Cleveland Browns quarterback Colt McCoy – his second coming on an overthrown ball in the end zone that served as the game-clincher for the Ravens in a 20-10 victory.

Moments later, Reed's overcoat caught fire when he sat too close to a space heater on the sideline, serving as a fitting metaphor for Reed's exciting play.

"I think you've got the hook for your story: Ed was on fire," coach John Harbaugh said. "And he really was on fire."

The Ravens systematically wore down the Browns in frigid conditions by pounding the ball with running back Ray Rice, who finished with 92 yards on 25 carries. Joe Flacco managed only 102 passing yards on 12 of 19 attempts but completed touchdown passes of 15 and 22 yards to T.J. Houshmandzadeh and Derrick Mason, respectively.

Cleveland's sloppy play for much of the afternoon helped, too. Mason's score came shortly after the Browns failed to retrieve an onside kick to open the second half, setting the stage for Flacco to take over at the 38-yard line. Linebacker Jameel McClain and cornerback Lardarius Webb also recovered important fumbles.

Player of the game: Ed Reed – two interceptions and two tackles.

Week 17 – Ravens 13, Bengals 7

Baltimore – M&T Bank Stadium

The Ravens' regular season finale did little to inspire hope for the postseason in a shaky 13-7 win over the Bengals.

Baltimore had only 199 yards of total offense and converted only two of 11 third downs. Joe Flacco completed 14 of 19 passes, but managed only 125 yards and threw one interception and zero touchdowns.

"It wasn't a great day but we got a win," Flacco said. "You have to be happy about that. We're going to the playoffs for bigger and better things. That's the important thing right now."

The victory was only made possible because of a vintage performance from safety Ed Reed, who twice intercepted Bengals quarterback Carson Palmer. Cincinnati had 395 yards of total offense, including 305 passing yards from Palmer. But Reed proved to be too much to handle.

Ray Rice accounted for Baltimore's only touchdown, charging into the end zone on a 7-yard run in the third quarter. Billy Cundiff kicked two field goals and tied Mitch Berger's touchback record when he booted two touchbacks against the Bengals to finish the season with 40.

Player of the game: Ed Reed – two interceptions

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