Playoff Parallels

If this were a movie, I would feel awfully confident that the Ravens were on their way to a 2nd Super Bowl win (I would also enjoy a leading role of some sort, probably.) The parallels from their 2000 Championship Season, while not mirror images, they are similar enough to make you pause.

First, they posted the same regular season record of 12-4, but had to go into the playoffs as a Wild Card. They enjoyed a win at Pittsburgh, but also lost to the Steelers at home. They went through stretches where the offense completely failed to live up to expectations leaving fans to call for any number of people to be fired. I’ve heard and seen all of that as well this season.

In the post season ten years ago, they earned a convincing, rather easy first round win (21-3 over Denver). This season already includes the 30-7 victory at KC. In the Divisional Round, on the road at their most fierce divisional rival, the Ravens survived a blood bath at Tennessee. Here we are again, with a different team, but the same scenario. In the AFC Title Game, the Ravens went on the road to face the team with the best record in the AFC. That is a likely option this season if New England manages to hold off the Jets.

There also is the sense of the Ravens rallying around one of their own. Ten years ago, Ray Lewis was dead set on redemption following his incarceration on flawed murder charges. Right now, as Ed Reed deals with the disappearance and assumed death of his brother Brian Reed, they lean on each other once more.

Because this is not a movie, the previous paragraphs may prove a fruitless exercise in typing of wishful thinking. But sometimes, maybe by accident, the game does follow a script.

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