Preseason Game Recap - Ravens vs Chiefs

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Ravens vs. Chiefs Highlights
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"He was able to get the ball out, and I was able to make a couple of plays for him," said Evans, who tied with David Reed for a team-leading 68 yards on three catches. "To get where we want to go and where we have to be, we still have a long way to go. 

"It's a good step, one in the right direction just to go out there and make some plays for him."

In addition to Evans, fans saw fullback Vonta Leach de-cleating Chiefs linebacker Brandon Siler on an open-field reception.

Rookie defensive end Pernell McPhee was consistently in the Kansas City backfield pressuring quarterback Matt Cassel and Tyler Palko.

And linebacker Sergio Kindle, who missed his entire rookie season with a fractured skull, even came within a hair of blocking two punts.

If the Ravens can continue to improve their makeshift offensive line, which allowed some pressure for the second consecutive week, the changes made to the roster thus far bode well for the season.

"Our first offense and first defense were crisp, and you could see the progress from the first game," said Head Coach John Harbaugh.  "We're getting better and improving, and that's what you like to see."

Two plays after Leach's back-planting of Siler, the Pro Bowler made a key block in the backfield while Oniel Cousins, who just switched from tackle to guard this week, and rookie Jah Reid made enough room for Ray Rice to ramble 26 yards into the end zone.

The touchdown, Baltimore's first of the season, gave the Ravens a 10-3 lead that the Chiefs would match with a nine-play, 80-yard scoring drive just before halftime.

Harbaugh wasn't happy with the way the Ravens closed out the half.  Poor tackling from their second-team defense allowed the Chiefs' backup, Palko, to march his team down the field with ease.

"The way that second group tackled at the end of the half is not acceptable and not the way we play defense here," Harbaugh said.

"We're better than that in the two-minute drill," said Defensive Coordinator Chuck Pagano.  "We don't care who is in there they have to tackle, and we didn't."

The starters were relentless, however.

Pagano, who said he would be "vanilla" during the preseason, brought the heat, blitzing safeties and cornerbacks throughout the game.

The Ravens logged five sacks, with cornerback Lardarius Webb getting credit for a half sack and safety Haruki Nakamura notching one.

And the offense showed that it was getting on track after a spotty performance in Philly, if it could just rid itself of penalties.

The Ravens had one drive in the second quarter derailed by a false start by left tackle Michael Oher.  Their second caught a hiccup when Cousins was flagged for a false start. 

Still, the backups made sure the Chiefs could never get back in it, as the Ravens scored three fourth-quarter touchdowns.

Running back Jalen Parmele bullied his way into the end zone to cap a five-play, 55-yard drive, rookie quarterback Tyrod Taylor ran it in himself to end a six-play, 73-yarder, and a 38-yard bomb from quarterback Hunter Cantwell to undrafted rookie LaQuan Williams set up a 1-yard touchdown run by rookie Anthony Allen.

"Last week's game wasn't an awful game, but I felt like I needed to improve today," said Taylor, who completed five of 11 passes for 88 yards.  "I think I did well.  I can feel it coming on.  I just need to go out there and take this ship on and be the leader they want me to be."

With their training camp schedule officially over, the Ravens now return to their training facility with an eye on not just their next preseason opponent, the Washington Redskins (Aug. 25), but more importantly, the Pittsburgh Steelers and opening day on Sept. 11.

"Obviously, we still have some work to do and a ways to go, but the day that counts is September 11," said linebacker Terrell Suggs.  "Basically every game that we play in the preseason gets us a step closer to that opener against the Steelers.

"I think we're right on pace, especially because we've only shown a quarter of the things we're going to do in the regular season."

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