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  1. #1

    Ravens punt early in 4th quarter

    No one is talking about this -- am I the only one who saw it?

    At the beginning of the 4th quarter (14:42), the Ravens punt. The return man calls for the fair catch, but a Giant bumps into him, and the ball takes a funny bounce. Brendan Ayanbadejo grabs the ball at about the 20 and starts a return, but the refs whistle it dead. Giants ball at the 20 or 21.

    That should have been Ravens ball! The ball takes a funny bounce because it bounced off the leg of one of the Giants players.

    Daren Stone (#39) is the Ravens gunner split out wide right in the punt formation. The Giant over him at the line of scrimmage is I think #25. (I never got a clear look at the number on this guy, but I think it's 25: I'm gonna write this as if I'm sure.) Stone beats him inside off the LOS, but gets blocked about 5 or 7 yards downfield by Giants #20. After the collision Stone is squared up with #25. He then drives #25 back 15 yards, with #20 running free next to the pair of them. Stone drives #25 straight into the return man Hixon. Hixon is knocked down; the ball hits #25 in the calf/ankle, dropping him dead in his tracks; and it caroms sideways for Ayanbadejo to snag. Ayanbadejo has a squad of blockers around him, and not many Giants, so he can probably stroll into the end zone here: but the refs blow the whistle as soon as Ayanbadejo has the ball.

    This was sort of obvious in real-time, since the bounce was so funny and #25 was knocked down, so I don't understand why the refs whistled the play dead in the first place: it looked like a muffed punt. Then after the play was dead, a number of the Ravens are pointing and saying it's their ball: Jameel McClain and Nick Greisen in particular seemed to have a perfect view of the ball hitting #25's leg. So I don't understand why the Ravens didn't challenge the call. And then since it was a weird looking play, I don't understand why the network didn't bother to show a reply of it. The announcers don't say anything about it at all.

    A pivotal part of the game, if the Ravens get a TD there it's 27-17 with over 14 mins of football to play. Yet it just slides by with no mention.

    I don't get it.

  2. #2

    Re: Ravens punt early in 4th quarter

    I've been harping on Harbaugh's lack of judgement when it comes to making challenges (amongst other things) and he refuses to shut me up once and for all.

    Maybe we can hire Mike Martz when he's fired from SanFran to throw challenge flags for us. He seemed to have it down pat when he coached the Rams a few years ago.

    People feel like it's taboo to criticize certain aspects of his coaching because he's a rookie, but I see it as constructive criticism. If he improves it, we put ourselves in a better position to succeed.

  3. #3

    Re: Ravens punt early in 4th quarter

    It didn't look like it hit anyone to me. I'll have to see it again.

    Dierdorf did make a comment - [paraphrase] "A few Ravens are trying to convice the officials that the ball came off the Giants, but I don't think the officials are buying it."

    And just to be clear - the kicking team can't advance a muffed punt, they can only recover it for possession.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Mt. Arrogance in the middle of the .11 rolling acres of The Windbag Estates

    Re: Ravens punt early in 4th quarter

    Yeah, the punt if muffed (fumbled would be a Giant gaining possession and then losing it) can't be advanced, only recovered.

    And I would need a replay to believe it, it didn't look like it hit anybody.

  5. #5

    Re: Ravens punt early in 4th quarter

    The play, at a minimum, deserved a closer replay. I thought it took a strange bounce. Why they did not show it again, God only knows.

  6. #6

    Re: Ravens punt early in 4th quarter

    Quote Originally Posted by Ravenswarrior19 View Post
    It didn't look like it hit anyone to me. I'll have to see it again.
    Quote Originally Posted by Greg View Post
    I would need a replay to believe it, it didn't look like it hit anybody.
    It hit the left calf/ankle of the player (#25?) who was blocked into the return man. Hit him sort of to the inside, which I guess is why it bounced sideways: and it takes the leg out from under him. You can see him drop when the ball hits him. The ball hits his leg, spikes sideways into the ground, then bounces up into the air and out in front of Ayanbadejo.

    I watched the game in high-def, and used Tivo's "slow" function to verify player numbers and exactly where it hit. So, I guess I had a couple advantages. But I was looking at the regular network feed, not some special footage. And it immediately looked funny to me while watching the game, which is why I re-wound it in the first place.

    It should be super-clear on any different-angle replays, if we ever get to see any.

  7. #7

    Re: Ravens punt early in 4th quarter

    I have not seen a replay, but what I saw looked a hell of a lot like it hit a Giant. Until i see otherwise, I say blown call. I hope to never hear "Ron Winter" on a Ravens game again, because I thought he sucked (not just against us. Tons of bad calls and noncalls for both teams. Just a bad officiating team imho)
    Moot point now, but was it challengeable? If so, Harbaugh, once again, makes a huge mistake in the lack of challenge department. Still love the job hes doing, but hope he improves on that front.

  8. #8

    Re: Ravens punt early in 4th quarter

    I rewound the DVR three times and it was inconclusive. Couldn't tell if it hit a player or just nosed into the ground and bounced back. The fact that CBS never showed a replay was just one in a long list of reasons why the coverage stunk. I listed some others in my Report Card piece this week. They need to junk the replay system and adopt the NCAA's system.

  9. #9

    Re: Ravens punt early in 4th quarter

    I watched it a couple times in slow mo on my HD DVR, it was hard to tell but it looked like it just hit the ground next to him and bounced up. I will go back and watch it again, have the game recorded.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Houston, TX Y'all

    Re: Ravens punt early in 4th quarter

    Watched the TiVo this morning ...

    Dont see it at all. And a good non-challenge by Harbs. That would have been a lost time out.

  11. #11

    Re: Ravens punt early in 4th quarter

    Quote Originally Posted by HoustonRaven View Post
    Watched the TiVo this morning:
    Dont see it at all.

    Quote Originally Posted by HoustonRaven View Post
    And a good non-challenge by Harbs. That would have been a lost time out.
    This is probably true.

    Harbaugh addressed it in his press conference yesterday:

    Starting at around 6:14. Here's my transcription of the relevant part:

    Quote Originally Posted by Harbaugh's Press Conference
    ...we had time there, there was a TV timeout. Of course the Giants were ungracious enough not to show it up on the big screen. And the funny thing was, TV didn't show it. All we saw was the live copy, they didn't show it – that was all thru the commercials, I don't know if they ever came back and showed it again. Our players coming off the field were pretty adamant that, it didn't hit anybody. Zbikowski, who did a great job of knocking their guy kind of into the ball, couldn't tell; but the rest of the guys around there, Nick Greisen and the rest of the guys, said naw it didn't hit anybody. So I just didn't feel like, being behind at that time, it was worth giving up a timeout, when our players – Now, if our players, if anybody had thought that it hit the guy I would have thrown the flag, because it would have been a shot to get it back. But, then we went back and saw it this morning, and you couldn't tell, so we obviously wouldn't have got the ball.
    I guess that explains everything. If other angles weren't conclusive, then the call wouldn't have been overturned.

    I still have some nagging questions. For one thing, the player who drove the guy into their return man, was it Zbikowski or was it #39? Of course Harbaugh knows his roster better than I do: maybe Zibby changed his number. Or maybe Harbaugh just misspoke in front of the cameras, it happens.

    For another thing, on the replay Greisen and Jameel McClain are clearly indicating Ravens ball at the end of the play. So it seems like they had an opinion about what they saw. Maybe they didn't say so forcefully on the sideline? Maybe they weren't sure enough to encourage their coach to risk a timeout?

    I dunno, I wasn't there. Wish we'd gotten the ball back!
    Last edited by JimZipCode; 11-18-2008 at 11:09 AM.


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