Well, for those of you who read my stuff on here, you know I'm a pretty supportive guy of our players.
Right now, Tandon Doss and Ed Dickson are the two guys I'm defending despite a lack of popularity in doing so.
But here is a list of all the members of the 2012/13 squad that I have heard raked over the coals here:
1) Joe Flacco- "He's not a franchise quarterback" "He has no pocket awareness" "He looks like a deer in the headlights" "The Ravens need to look for his replacement in the offseason" "Give Tyrod Taylor a start to shake things up" (was actually said) "What would it cost to bring in Alex Smith to replace him?"
2) Anquan Boldin- "he's too slow to contribute as a WR anymore" "He's washed up" "He has bad hands"
(I don't think the put-downs on Boldin were that bad overall, most of us supported him, but there were 4-5
people who kept saying these things after he had a bad game)
3) Ed Dickson- enough said on him
4) Michael Oher- "trade him before the rest of the league finds out that he sucks" "Dumbest guy in the league" "never learns from his mistakes" "He's gonna get Joe carried off in a stretcher some day"
5) Bryant McKinnie- "Lazy" "Fat Toad" "Worst teammate in the league" "Doesn't deserve the honor of wearing our jersey"
6) Matt Birk- nothing major, but there were a few mild statements that he was washed up and "getting eaten alive" by larger DTs.
7) David Reed- This is one who hadn't been mentioned. This guy was universally slammed to a level likely matched by only McKinnie. Some comments that come to mind are "worthless" "cut him as he is getting on the plane and make him find his own way back to Baltimore" (actually said after the Seattle game) "No chance of ever seeing the field again for the Ravens". He wasn't a major cog in our success, but once he got back healthy this year, he did some nice things for us as our gunner.
8) Terrence Cody- Pretty much all the same names as McKinnie, except with a little less vitrol because I don't think he was viewed as a partying quitter like McKinnie. Of all the people on the people on this list, he is the one who I will admit to not having a leg to stand on defense-wise. He's a bad player, and seems to not show any signs of getting better. I can't think of one significantly positive thing he did for us in 16 games this year. IMO, we won a title in spite of him, not in any way thanks to him. No apology needed here.
9) Paul Kruger. Didn't hear much criticism of him this year, but I've heard him referred to as a "bust" hundreds of times over his first two years, particularly that rookie season when he was inactive a lot in favor of more experienced guys like Barnes, Pryce, Suggs, JJ, etc
10) Ellerbe - I heard a ton of people saying he was lazy, undisciplined, and had no value to us anymore. I heard a lot of "cut him" after his end zone fiasco in the preseason last year. We also heard a lot of people saying he wasn't worth the 2nd round tender that the Ravens game him last offseason, saying that he didn't have the motivation to make a legitimate contribution.
11) Considine- "Only reason he is still on a NFL roster is because he's one of Harbaugh's guy". Well, Harbaugh's guy, along with Anthony Allen, delivered one of the biggest blocks in Ravens history in springing Jones for the KO return TD. Without that block, we might not have a 2nd Lombardi in our trophy case.
12) Jimmy Smith- people have blasted him because he can't stay healthy, and when he is, he has been highly inconsistent. Yet, in the clutch, he made some key plays. I remember that sensational INT against Brady last year in the AFCCG. Brady was going for the knockout punch to eliminate us from that game, and Smith's ridiculous athleticism prevented it and kept hope alive for a win. He made a great tackle on Holliday late in the OT period of the Denver game, forcing them to start their drive deep into Denver territory. That field position ultimately mattered when Manning's INT took place in DEN territory and we only needed 15 yards or so to get it into Tucker range.
13) Cary Williams- The names he was called after the Eagles/Patriots game were a bit embarrassing to be frank. A lot of people were slamming him as an idiot for not taking the contract extension, saying he'd never see anywhere near that type of money again. I heard a reference to him as the "2012 DeRon Jenkins" . The very next week he returned an INT for a TD and played pretty well over the final 2/3rds of the season.
I was particularly irritated by some of the comment directed at Cary, because he was a player who was cut by a pretty mediocre Titans team in 2009 because they saw no value in him. By 2011, less than two seasons later, he was starting every game for the AFC runner up. By the end of 2012, he was playing the best CB on our team. This guy went from practice squad to cut to starter on a Super Bowl team in a remarkably short span of time. You don't make that type of progress without working your tail off. Cary Williams and Ed Reed started all 38 of our games over the past two seasons. Last year, when we faced simultaneous injuries to Smith/Foxworth/Chris Carr early in the season, we leaned on Williams. This year, we had Webb and Smith out for a long stretch of time, and it was again Cary Williams who stepped up his play along with Graham.
Williams won't go down in Baltimore football history as a big hero, but he should. His remarkable progress from waiver wire pickup to solid, durable starter should always be remembered as a key component of our success this year.
I would like to apologize to John Harbaugh as well. I've always liked you as our coach, John. I've always felt you were a great leader and a great listener. Yet, I apologize because I felt at times that you didn't have enough xs and os savvy to take a team all the way to the promised land. I was wrong. You were the perfect fit for our organization and I couldn't be prouder to have you lead our troops for years to come.
I'm going to apologize to Jim Caldwell in advance. Because while I know he's better than Cameron, I have some doubts about his ability to call 4 full quarters of top level football. (So when I blast him next year, then the Ravens repeat as Super Bowl champs, I'll already have my apology in the books.)
(And how about all those people who were blasting Bruce Ariens "because so many Steeler fans didn't like him"? And ranted on and on about how it was stupid to suggest that he be the OC to replace Cameron? Eh? He had a great year with the Colts, and it earned him a HC spot immediately. Anyone going to man up for that?)
I'd like to apologize to Andy Moeller on behalf of the folks here who mocked his disease and are now silent after a superb post season offensive line performance.
Starting off the season the way he did I thought for sure him turning down the contract extension was better for the team, now with his performance down the stretch he's played himself into a big contract (probably somewhere else).
Those apologizing for not appreciating Flacco fully can take some solace - the Cam Cameron effect is subtle - a normal play calling scenario intersects between the team's capabilities and the defensive looks - for Cameron, it is pretty much what he called last week.
Sorry, Jacoby! I hope you're here for a long time. You're talented, tough, and never say die ... a true Raven.
I have to admit, I need to apologize to Boldin. I was hard on him when he dropped passes earlier in the season, as well as in the playoffs against the Steelers. Once Caldwell took over the playcalling, he was utilized more properly and allowed to get into a better rhythm. You saw the results. It was almost like watching him back in Arizona.
While I am at it, I would like to take a moment to explain something to all my friends, all the people who have read my words, read my rants, or taken offense to my sometimes less than cordial way of writing about the Ravens.
I have over the past few years been suffering from something as well, I am 41 and my testosterone has steadily decreased. The harder I worked out, the less results I was getting, fatigue grew. Additionally to that, there are a small percentage of men, who become aggressive, touch, angry.
I often took this out on loved ones as well as John Harbaugh for instance. I went to the doctor and found I had a condition that required surgery. Mods, please forgive me, but I feel this is important to men to get there T-Levels checked and know that your hormones can be the cause of an inordinate amount of suffering.
I had a condition called varicocele. Usually the surgery is used to restore fertility, but in me, it was killing my testosterone production. I had the surgery a month ago and I see the world so much differently than I once did.
The unkind words I had for some posters, John Harbaugh, and Andy Moeller are not forgiven because of my malaise, but it helps put it in perspective and I would hope any men out there who are feeling not themselves to get checked. Women get themselves checked yearly and guys are just now starting to realize things like prostate cancer, colon caner are often detected too late because we play tough guys.
I was fortunate it wasn't cancer and I hope any and all of you whom I may have offended, Raven's or posters give me a second chance. - I'm still going to be a sarcastic bastard ;)
I compared Flacco and Romo as equals....I now apologize for those comments as Joe is not a CHAMP!!!!
Two guys I dogged all season were Oher and Cary Williams. Both of these guys played fantastic in this playoff run. Maybe me riding them so hard during the season brought on this outstanding play, wishful thinking I know...
I apologize to all the posters on this board who said -- correctly -- that Cam was the problem. I was not a Cam "defender," either, but I figured that the players made the plays, and so were to blame; "it was all a matter of execution."
But we have seen since Cam's firing how the plays themselves must kept Joe and the receivers from leveraging their skills and getting open.
Sorry to have doubted you, Ravens 24x7 posters. Fire Cam!