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Ravens-Chiefs halftime notes

1/9/2011

KANSAS CITY -- The Baltimore Ravens lead the Kansas City Chiefs, 10-7, at intermission.

Here are some notes at halftime.

  • There was a lot of jawing between these teams. The Ravens are known to talk trash, and tailback Ray Rice and receivers Anquan Boldin and T.J. Houshmandzadeh got into it several times with Chiefs defenders. Kansas City defensive linemen Shaun Smith, who played against Baltimore most of his career in Cincinnati and Cleveland, also has been getting into it.

  • One of the big storylines entering the game was whether Baltimore's fifth-rated run defense could slow down Chiefs Pro Bowl tailback Jamaal Charles. So far, Kansas City is getting the best of that battle as Charles has rushed for 87 yards on seven carries, including a 41-yard touchdown run in the first half.

  • The crossing routes have been open for Baltimore and might be something the team wants to continue exploit in the second half. Ravens tight end Todd Heap has been very successful getting open on those routes, which have moved the chains. Heap has seven catches for 81 yards in the first half.

  • Baltimore's pass protection in the past month has been shoddy and the Ravens struggled in this area in the first half. Kansas City registered three sacks of quarterback Joe Flacco. But Flacco has also done a good job of scrambling out of trouble for additional yards.