Monday, December 16, 2013
Ravens' top Monday Night moments
By Jamison Hensley
DETROIT -- The Baltimore Ravens have always been prime-time players under coach John Harbaugh, posting a 14-7 record (.667) under the lights. Harbaugh called it a "unique" experience to play on "Monday Night Football."
"Playing on Monday night is something that usually happens maybe once a year if you’re fortunate, and it is special," Harbaugh said. "The whole country is watching. A lot of non-football fans are watching. It’s something our players get excited about, always have.”
Here are the Ravens' top five moments on "Monday Night Football":
1. Chris McAlister's then-record return: Set up by Ray Lewis' path-clearing hit on Keith Burns, McAlister brought back a missed field goal 107 yards for a touchdown as the Ravens upset the previously undefeated Denver Broncos in September 2002. "I watched and hung in the end zone and let my guys set up the wall," McAlister said. "All I saw was purple jerseys and green until I hit the end zone." The record is now 109 yards, which was set by Antonio Cromartie (2007) and tied by Cordarrelle Patterson (2013).
2. Goal-line stand in Tennessee: The Ravens' first-ever Monday night appearance ended with safety Corey Harris and linebacker Jamie Sharper stuffing Titans quarterback Steve McNair and holding the Titans quarterback a half yard away from the goal line to preserve a 16-10 win for Baltimore in November 2001. "I expect my check in the mail from ABC tomorrow," Ravens coach Brian Billick said. "Finally had a Monday night game that was worth staying up for."
3. Josh Wilson's interception in Houston: After the Ravens squandered a 21-point second-half lead, cornerback Josh Wilson saved Baltimore in overtime by intercepting Houston quarterback Matt Schaub and returning it 12 yards for the game-winning touchdown in a 34-28 win in December 2010. Three minutes into overtime, Wilson saw wide receiver Kevin Walter run outside and Schaub's pass sail inside right to him. "I still can't believe that really happened," Wilson said. "I was saying, 'Catch the ball, catch the ball, catch the ball.' And game over."
4. Ray Lewis' hit in New York: In a one-point win at the New York Jets in September 2010, Lewis broke up a pass to Dustin Keller with 48 seconds left by drilling the tight end. In an era where every hit is now scrutinized, Lewis' blow was legal and devastating. He drove his right shoulder into the chest of Keller, who was leveled to the ground. Lewis later described his fourth-quarter hit of Keller, saying, "it's like a quarterback throwing a big touchdown."
5. Kyle Boller upstages Brett Favre: Accomplishing what many considered unthinkable, Boller out-dueled the three-time NFL Most Valuable Player, throwing for 253 yards and three touchdowns in the Ravens' 48-3 rout of the Green Bay Packers in December 2005. Boller shredded the NFL's top-ranked pass defense, completing 19 of 27 passes (70 percent) and recording a career-best 136.8 quarterback rating. "I felt this game I was going to go out there and play relaxed and smooth ... [and] let the game come to me," Boller said.