2013 NFL Playoffs: Baltimore Ravens’ Big Plays Sets Up Harbaugh Bowl

David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Well I am now 0-6 in championship game predictions over the past three seasons. Interestingly enough I felt sure the ‘Harbowl’ would take place last season, but a stellar second half performance from the Baltimore Ravens ensured the football world wouldn’t miss out on this glorious event for a second season running.

Credit the Ravens, in Tom Brady’s last six games against the Ravens’ defense, he has just six touchdowns and nine interceptions. The Ravens were deserved winners; they never allowed the Brady run New England Patriots offense to settle, and in the second half really complimented Joe Flacco who outscored Brady by 21 unanswered points.

After keeping in touch for the first half, the Ravens’ offense opened up the second half with back-to-back touchdown drives to steam into an eight point lead.

When Bernard Pollard forced a fumble from Stevan Ridley off of a brutal hit that knocked the Patriots running back out before he hit the ground, Flacco proceeded to drive down the field to open up a 15-point lead that the Patriots never came close to pulling back.

The difference in the outcome of this game in comparison to last seasons’ AFC Championship game was the Ravens converted their big plays at big times, once they got ahead Ray Lewis and the Ravens’ defense kept their foot on the Patriots’ throat.

Don’t believe me? On their last four drives of the game the Patriots turned the ball over on every one of them. Twice through interceptions, once on downs and once on that huge hit from Pollard that really sent a shock wave through the Patriots’ Superbowl hopes.

This game marked the first time ever that Brady and Bill Belichick have lost a game that they were winning at halftime.

The Ravens fully deserved this victory, as a result will head down to New Orleans to face the San Francisco 49ers in Superbowl XLVII or, as it will now forever be known, the HarBowl.


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