Bengals vs. Ravens Preview: Loser Leaves Town

Jeffrey BoswellAnalyst IOctober 9, 2009

SAN DIEGO - SEPTEMBER 20:  Quarterback Joe Flacco #5 of the Baltimore Ravens plays against the San Diego Chargers at Qualcomm Stadium on September 20, 2009 in San Diego, California.  (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

Note: The quotes in this article are fictional.

On their way to a 3-1 record and a share of the AFC North lead, the Bengals have shown a flair for the dramatic, losing on a miracle, tipped-pass touchdown to Denver in week one, while beating the Steelers in the final seconds in week three, and winning on the final play in overtime last week in Cleveland, 23-20.

“You may have heard that my team talked me into going for it on fourth down in overtime,” says Marvin Lewis.

“I can pretty much be talked in to anything. Heck, I took the Cincy job back in 2003. And I kissed Chad Ochocinco last year, but that was under the influence of quaaludes and champagne. That was when Chad was undergoing his identity crisis, and seriously considered changing his name to Roman Polanski.”

The Ravens are seething after Sunday’s 27-21 loss in New England, angry at some officiating that they felt favored the home-standing Pats. Particularly at question were two roughing the passer calls in the first half, one in which Terrell Suggs was flagged for simply grazing the knee of Tom Brady. Super-slow motion replays appeared to show Brady actually reaching into the back pocket of the official and throwing the flag himself. Or, at least replays in the Baltimore area did.

“If Giselle Bundchen does that same thing to Brady,” says Ray Lewis, “she doesn’t get flagged. She gets pregnant. By golly, I’ve seen more abuse to the cryogenically frozen head of baseball great Ted Williams go unpunished.”

“If officials are going to be that biased towards quarterbacks with a history of knee injuries, then we’re screwed. Heck, Carson Palmer’s knee is responsible for all the legislation protecting quarterbacks. It’s difficult enough already for NFL defenders to chase ‘skirts’ off the field without being penalized; now we have to worry about repercussions on the field.”

You can expect the Ravens defenders to throw caution to the wind and come at Carson Palmer with everything they’ve got, making sure their hits are in the ‘strike zone,” in the area above the knees and below the neck. If Palmer is wise, he’ll get rid of the ball quickly, because the officials won’t be calling any roughing penaties.

Baltimore wins 31-27.