Lee Evans Talks About Last Year's Game
As the Ravens prepare to head back to Foxborough this weekend, one of the enduring images from last year's game is wide receiver Lee Evans having the game-winning touchdown pass popped out of his grasp by Patriots defender Sterling Moore. Two plays later, kicker Billy Cundiff missed a game-tying 32-yard field goal attempt.
That was Evans' final play in a Ravens uniform and may have been the last play of his NFL career. He was cut by the Ravens after the season and failed to make another team's roster coming out of training camp.
A year after the most heartbreaking play of his career – and perhaps in Ravens history – Evans is at peace with how things ended.
"Last year put a lot of things in perspective for me, being around all those guys and seeing the way that organization is and what they believe," Evans told ESPN reporter Elizabeth Merrill. "It was a tremendous challenge for me, mentally and physically, and I think I've been able to grow a ton. I wouldn't change that for anything."
Evans, who still lives in the Baltimore area, has a picture of the play hanging in his house. It's a daily reminder of humility.
"I do think about it," Evans says. "I don't think about it in a negative way, though. Right after the play, I went to the [PR] guy and basically asked him to get me a picture of it. Give me a picture of that moment, so I have it. I wanted it as a constant reminder to keep pushing, to keep going.
"I look at that picture, and basically I ask myself, 'Do I want another opportunity to do that again?'"
After last year's game, Evans stood up in the Ravens* *locker room and faced the media to take the blame for the loss.
"It was an opportunity to go to the Super Bowl, and I let it go," Evans said at the time.
He even sought out linebacker Ray Lewis after the game by the Ravens' busses. He wanted to apologize for costing the veteran another opportunity to make it to another Super Bowl late in his career.
Lewis wouldn't let him apologize. Instead, he offered words of encouragement.
"It's all about the journey," Evans said. "It's all about the path to get there. Obviously, it takes you to places sometimes you don't expect to be.
"Ray felt like what we had there was something real, and if it's supposed to be, it's going to happen. He felt that this team is built to be a champion. He had a real sense and a real tangible attitude that they were going to be right back where we were next year with the same opportunity."
Suggs Mic'd Up For Broncos Win
Terrell Suggs always seems to be talking.
And that was no different when the Ravens took on the Broncos last weekend. The Ravens outside linebacker was mic'd up during the Ravens' win over the Broncos for an edition of the NFL Network's SoundFX, and the entertaining linebacker always keeps things interesting.
Cameras caught him talking some trash with Broncos fans, coaching up the Ravens defense on the sidelines and challenging wide receiver Torrey Smith to make a big play.
After the victory, Suggs even shook hands with Broncos fans behind the Ravens' bench to tell them, "Good game."
Schrager: Expect A Harbaugh Bowl
For the second straight season, John and Jim Harbaugh have their teams in the conference championship games, potentially setting up a Harbaugh Super Bowl.
The Ravens and 49ers were both eliminated in the conference championships last season, but this year FOXSports.com writer Peter Schrager expects to see the Harbaugh brothers meet in New Orleans.
"Yes, I love the road teams on Sunday. Throw the point spreads, the recent history, and the home crowds away," Schrager wrote. "In Harbaugh(s), I trust."
Schrager credits the two coaches for the Ravens and 49ers getting back to the conference championships.
"It's the team's two coaches — bold, unapologetic, and quite different from one another — who are most responsible for the sudden uptick in offensive productivity," Schrager wrote.
"But these aren't the same teams we saw in the AFC and NFC Conference Championship Games in 2012. They're better. They're hungrier. They're more potent offensively. They're also being run by better — bolder — head coaches. If you were craving for a Brother vs. Brother Super Bowl in New Orleans back in August, I think you're going to get your wish."
- Torrey Smith has gone silent on Twitter. One of the Ravens' most prolific tweeters, the second-year wideout has decided stay away from Twitter until after the AFC championship. @TorreySmwithWR "I'm off here until Sunday night....focused." [Twitter]
- Can Flacco demand Eli Manning/Philip Rivers money of (6yr/$92 mil) or is that figure too high for Flacco? ESPN.com's Jamison Hensley says, "It wouldn't surprise me if Flacco demanded more. Not saying he would get it. I expect the Ravens to put the franchise tag on him in February. Not sure if a deal gets done this year at all." [ESPN.com]
- @AdamSchefter: "Since current seeding system was introduced in 1990, No. 4 seeds are 6-1 in conference championship games. #Ravens" [Twitter]
- @Ravens: "Bill Belichick on : "He's special. He's really special."
- Ravens practice squad quarterback Dennis Dixon says that he's "in awe" of former Oregon coach Chip Kelley getting the Philadelphia Eagles head coaching job. [The Baltimore Sun]
- OJ Brigance to receive community service award. [The Baltimore Sun]
- Baltimore area executives make their predictions for the AFC championship. [Baltimore Business Journal]
- In need of a laugh this morning? Check out this hilarious rendition of Bad Lip Reading featuring players, coaches and officials from NFL games. Very well done.