Ravens Show Winning Attitude Despite Heartbreaking Loss

by on December 7th, 2010
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“Not one play won or lost this game Not one play,” declared All-World Linebacker Ray Lewis at the press conference following the AFC Championship Game. “Could he have put us in a position to keep playing? Absolutely. But one play didn’t win or lose this game. There’s never been one man that has ever lost a game. We win as a team, we lose as a team.”

This seemed to be the team sentiment, despite the colossal letdown, as the Baltimore Ravens’ Superbowl hopes sailed wide left with Billy Cundiff’s 32-yard field goal attempt with 11 seconds left in regulation. The errant kick handed the New England Patriots a 23-20 victory in a game that appeared to be headed into overtime.

“I think, if anything, the disappointment is letting my teammates down,” said Cundiff. “This is a team game. You know that Ray has poured his heart out, and he’s had a long career and you don’t know how many more years he has left, and to let him down is pretty tough.”

Being a placekicker takes a special breed. There is an individual pressure like no other position in this team sport. Seldom is a kicker hailed as the hero in a game, but quite often he can become the goat. The pressure of a last-minute kick in a close game is squarely on this one person. The kick is however no more detrimental to the outcome than a dropped or an overthrown pass, a missed block or tackle, or any of numerous blown assignments during the course of a game. It’s magnified because all eyes are on the kick and every one of us in the stands and on our couches believe we could have made that kick! (Unless we’ve actually been in that spot).

So hold your head up Billy Cundiff….make that kick next year. Don’t worry, Ray and the gang will all still be there making life miserable for the rest of the leagues offenses. Be proud that you are on a team of winners, whether you have the highest score or not!


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