Final

Ravens 10

(0-2, 0-1 away)

Titans 25

(1-1, 1-0 home)

1:00 PM ET, September 18, 2005

 

1 2 3 4 T
BAL 0 0 3 710
TEN 7 6 3 925

Top Performers

Passing: A. Wright (BAL) - 212 YDS, 1 TD, 1 INT

Rushing: T. Henry (TEN) - 18 CAR, 62 YDS

Receiving: D. Mason (BAL) - 8 REC, 60 YDS, 1 TD

Ravens' offense can't find rhythm; defense outplayed

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Tennessee Titans linebacker Keith Bulluck was so elated over teammate Brad Kassell's interception return for a touchdown that he grabbed the first football he saw and punted it into the stands.

It was over when ...
Anthony Wright and the Ravens' offense came up empty with six three-and-out series on their first seven possessions. They showed a little rythym in the third quarter, but it was too late.
Game ball goes to ...
The Titans' defense, which atoned for its struggles last week by out-playing the Ravens' Pro Bowl-stocked unit. Tennessee's D had six sacks and forced two turnovers, to hold the listless Ravens to 182 yards, including just 14 yards rushing.
ESPN's take ...
Eric Allen It's not a good time to be a Ravens' fan with the poor play at quarterback. Now they have to wonder if it's Kordell Stewart time and that's not particularly appealing to any Ravens' fan. It's kind of unfathomable that they made the pick for Kyle Boller in the first place and have not been able to get him ready. They are showing major cracks early in the season and have to turn it around or heads could roll in Baltimore.
-- Eric Allen

Oops. That was the ball Kassell wanted for his trophy cabinet.

"If he has to buy it, I'll buy it for him," Bulluck said of the ball, which now belongs to a fan.

Bulluck and the Titans were in a giving mood Sunday after proving they really can tackle in beating the Baltimore Ravens 25-10 in their home opener.

Steve McNair threw a touchdown, Rob Bironas kicked field goals of 39, 29 and 47 yards and Rob Reynolds blocked a punt in the end zone for a safety as the NFL's youngest team easily dismantled a supposedly improved Ravens offense.

The rebuilding Titans (1-1) had replaced five starters on defense this offseason, but they easily outplayed Baltimore's Pro Bowl-stocked unit with six sacks and two turnovers, including Kassell's 21-yard interception return in the fourth quarter.

Kyle Vanden Bosch just missed a safety on his third sack of the game, but Reynolds got it when he blocked Dave Zastudil's punt and tackled Will Demps in the end zone in the final minutes.

"The defense played great," Titans running back Travis Henry said.

The Ravens (0-2) struggled for a second straight week on offense, and not even a change in quarterback seemed to help.

Anthony Wright started for Kyle Boller, who was booed when he left with a hyperextended right big toe in last week's 24-7 loss to Indianapolis. Wright had helped lead the Ravens to the AFC North title in 2003 before losing to the Titans in a wild-card game on Jan. 3, 2004, his last start.

Now they head into their bye week before hosting the New York Jets on Oct. 2, and coach Brian Billick said he can't even begin to break down all the mistakes.

"We've got a lot of work to do, plain and simple. This bye didn't look to be in a particularly good spot when it first came out. But obviously right now, it's what we need because we have a great deal of work these next two weeks," Billick said.

The Titans' defense gave up 206 yards last week in an embarrassing 34-7 loss at Pittsburgh.

They fed off the emotions of a sold-out crowd and more than atoned by holding Baltimore to 182 yards offense and a Ravens-franchise low of only 14 yards rushing. The Ravens went three-and-out on six of their first seven possessions and didn't get a first down until the third quarter.

"What a difference a week makes," Titans coach Jeff Fisher said.

"We now have to maintain this level of play, and that is the challenge week to week."

The Titans had no such problems as they held the ball for more than 19 minutes in the first half and rolled up 228 yards with a 13-0 lead. They finished with 290 yards.

After a fumble by Jamal Lewis, McNair tossed a 2-yard pass to fullback Troy Fleming for a 7-0 lead midway through the first quarter.

Lewis finished with nine yards on 10 carries, and he only had compliments for Tennessee.

"Watching on film from last week, they looked like a totally different defense. They played well. They played great as a whole team," Lewis said.

Bironas, who missed his only field goal attempt at Pittsburgh, capped a 13-play drive in the second quarter with his first field goal and added a 29-yarder just before halftime. He tightened his hold on his first NFL job with the 47-yarder in the third.

McNair finished 19-of-36 for 195 yards.

Wright had trouble getting comfortable and was 25-of-40 for 212 yards. He fell when he stepped on center Mike Flynn's foot after the snap, and bobbled a snap three times out of the shotgun.

Billick's only other options were rookie Derek Anderson and veteran Kordell Stewart, who was signed earlier this week. Baltimore finally got on the board by abandoning the run on their first drive in the third quarter.

Wright hit seven straight passes in moving the Ravens to the Titans 12. But he missed Wilcox under pressure and overthrew Clarence Moore in the end zone, so they settled for a 30-yard field goal from Matt Stover.

The Ravens finally scored on a 12-yard TD toss to ex-Titan Derrick Mason in the fourth when it was too late.

Game notes


Vanden Bosch came into the game with only five sacks in his first four seasons with Arizona. ... Kassell's interception and TD return was a career-first for the linebacker. ... The 14 yards rushing allowed was the fewest by Tennessee since holding Buffalo to 4 yards rushing net on Nov. 23, 1997. ... The six sacks by the Titans were the most since Sept. 8, 2002, when they had six against Philadelphia.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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Team Stat Comparison

 
BAL
TEN
1st Downs1216
Passing 1st downs
1112
Rushing 1st downs
02
1st downs from penalties
12
3rd down efficiency
4-167-17
4th down efficiency
1-10-0
Total Plays6067
Total Yards182290
Yards per play3.04.3
Total Drives1415
Passing168193
Comp-Att
25-4119-37
Yards per pass
3.65.1
Interceptions thrown
10
Sacks-Yards Lost
6-441-2
Rushing1497
Rushing Attempts
1329
Yards per rush
1.13.3
Red Zone (Made-Att)0-20-3
Penalties10-735-47
Turnovers21
Fumbles lost
11
Interceptions thrown
10
Defensive / Special Teams TDs01
Possession26:5433:06

Passing Leaders

BALC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
Wright25/402125.3116-44
Hymes0/100.0000-0
TENC/ATTYDSAVGTDINTSACKS
McNair19/361955.4101-2
Bennett0/100.0000-0

Rushing Leaders

BALCARYDSAVGTDLG
Lewis1090.9013
Taylor351.707
TENCARYDSAVGTDLG
Henry18623.4017
Brown8334.1022

Receiving Leaders

BALRECYDSAVGTDLG
Mason8607.5112
Heap55611.2020
TENRECYDSAVGTDLG
Bennett35217.3035
Jones22914.5016

Scoring Summary

FIRST QUARTERBALTEN
tenTD7:54Troy Fleming, 2 yd pass from Steve McNair (Rob Bironas kick is good)
Drive info: 4 plays, 25 yds, 1:00
07
SECOND QUARTERBALTEN
ten13:14Rob Bironas 31 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 14 plays, 47 yds, 7:20
010
ten0:06Rob Bironas 21 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 5 plays, 26 yds, 0:46
013
THIRD QUARTERBALTEN
bal8:58Matt Stover 22 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 10 plays, 74 yds, 4:26
313
ten7:16Rob Bironas 39 yd Field Goal
Drive info: 4 plays, 1 yds, 1:30
316
FOURTH QUARTERBALTEN
balTD12:01Brad Kassell, 21 yd interception return (Rob Bironas kick is good)
Drive info: 1 plays, 0 yds, 0:00
323
balTD6:28Derrick Mason, 12 yd pass from Anthony Wright (Matt Stover kick is good)
Drive info: 16 plays, 88 yds, 5:17
1023