The Baltimore Ravens have an interesting week. Sunday they had a home win against the Bengals and on Thanksgiving Day, they have another home game against the Niners. It is the first Thanksgiving Day game in the history of the team and will once again feature the Ravens in the national spotlight.
At 7-3, the Ravens are currently leading the AFC North, though it’s been a bumpy ride with inconsistent games all season. They played tough against the better teams and fell short in losses to teams with little to no wins. They played well against the Bengals despite the absence of middle linebacker, Ray Lewis. Although Lewis was missing from action, his presence was still felt from the sideline and he helped to rally the team.
The offense looked good, Cam Cameron adjusted his play calling and Ray Rice ran the hell out of the ball with 20 carries for 104 yards and two touchdowns. Joe Flacco looked jittery at first, he eventually calmed down and went 17 for 27 with two touchdowns. Rookie wide receiver Torrey Smith was outstanding with six catches and one touchdown.
Thursday’s game, dubbed the “Harbaugh Bowl”, is unique as it is the first time two brothers will face each other as head coaches of opposing teams. Ravens head coach, John Harbaugh, is in his fourth season and has taken the team to the playoffs every year since he started in 2008.
John’s younger brother, Jim Harbaugh, is in his first season as the head coach of the Niners. It is interesting to note that Jim is a former NFL quarterback and played with the Ravens in 1998. This season, Jim has done an outstanding job coaching his 9-1 Niners. Quarterback Alex Smith, like Flacco, is not elite, but manages to get the job done. The teams’ crown jewel is their defense, who some say are reminiscent of the Ravens defense in 2000, the one with Super Bowl rings.
The Harbaugh brothers have been competitive their entire lives, but this will be the greatest competition they’ve faced to date and it will be interesting to see how the game unfolds and who wins the battle of the Harbaughs.
Ravens fans are tired of the Jekyll and Hyde act this season, they’ve seen enough and are ready for the consistency that should be evident by this time in the season. If the assumption that the Ravens only play tough against the “good” teams holds true, then they should play tough and walk away with a win (fingers crossed).
On this Thanksgiving holiday, we have lots to be thankful for, but another win would make us even more thankful.
What do you think? Who will win the battle of the Harbaughs?