Ravens Pop Warner-like Performance no Fault of Orioles

Goodell Pinocchio

Game one against the Denver Broncos was predictably a disaster for the Baltimore Ravens, not just because the game was on the road or because Dennis Pitta was lost for a significant portion of the season. The fact is that Denver came into the game after suffering what many considered to be the worst loss in not just Bronco football history, but Denver sports history.

The Broncos came into the game angry, fired up, motivated by their fans, and ready to play. Baltimore came in looking like they had just woken up from a nap – at least based on their inconsistent play in the first half, and horrible play in the second half.

Yet, from the media coverage of the game, one would think that the sole reason the Ravens lost was that the Orioles refused to move their home game against the Chicago White Sox to another time or date and that the Orioles were the sole evil party in that regard.

Commentators Cris Collinsworth and Al Michaels continuously sounded this refrain both in the long pregame (due to a lightning storm) and the early stages of the game.

The only thing that seemed to get lost in the shuffle of this was the whole truth. As the facts now show, the Orioles made a significant effort to find a solution to what was the NFL essentially dictating what had to be done.

Many options were explored – but league rules – involving MLB (through Commissioner Bud Selig), the MLB Players Association, and the Chicago White Sox (not to mention TV networks) could not be overcome to accommodate a time change that would allow for parking lots to be utilized and somehow cope with afternoon rush hour traffic, the remnants of the Baltimore Grand Prix, and two teams both arriving late from out-of-town games.

One move would have been to put the game on Rosh Hashanah but this would have disenfranchised observant Jews – plus reports that likely home game opponent New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft (who is Jewish) was adamant against playing on the holiday.

So, if moving the game up wasn’t an option because of traffic and parking, and especially if the game went into extra innings, and it couldn’t be moved to Wednesday, what about swapping a game with the ChiSox? Apparently this was discussed but the White Sox did not wish to give up their July 4 home game, and the Orioles did not want to give up a home game off their schedule – despite compensation promises from the Ravens and NFL.

So, how was this the Orioles’ fault?

The answer is, “It wasn’t!”

The Orioles were under no obligation to move their game. They refused to take a goodwill action and move their game in the heat of a playoff race. Who can really blame them? It was really the fault of poor communication between the NFL and MLB when it came to making a schedule.

The end result was that the Ravens were put on the trash tray in the second half by the Broncos and placed squarely in the dumpster at the end of Thursday night, humiliated, out-coached, out-played, out-everything-ed by the Broncos.

It was infuriating to fans who expected a far better performance from their Super Bowl champs and their coach whose own staff took a huge play off in missing a game-changing replay challenge.

It was still just one game. The broadcasters at NBC got it right in one aspect – the game should have been played at home.

But to say this was just because of the Orioles is just not the whole story.

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About Tom Moore

Tom Moore
TOM MOORE is from Baltimore and writes on sports for Press Box, and he previously served as a columnist for The Baltimore Examiner on many topics related to Baltimore and Maryland. Described by many as a ‘Renaissance man,’ Mr. Moore has hosted the weekly radio program The Tom Moore Show...more

14 Raves on “Ravens Pop Warner-like Performance no Fault of Orioles

  1. RJ on said:

    So, is it logical (or not) to assume then, as I have been speculating for some time now, that the other owners, Kraft in particular, carry more weight than does our owner!? In the end, the ‘commish’ will side with the likes of Kraft, Rooney, and the other ‘heavy weights’ within the ownership group, rather than Biscuit; otherwise, the game could have possibly been played on Wed. night? Interested in your take. I do NOT blame MLB – I blame the NFL ownership, where Bisciotti is just the new ‘boy’ on the block.

    • Don Carpenter on said:

      If the Ravens had played at home, the opponent would have been New England. That’s why Kraft was mentioned. This is squarely on Bud Seling, not the Orioles or NFL.

  2. Jimmy Dundalk on said:

    You sound like one of the ‘Balto Sports Report’ baseball weenies who think the O’s can do no wrong,,,,,,,,,you and I both know the decision never got past Peter the Great……………..By the way , you forgot to mention the Ravens moved two of their games for the O’s,,,,,,,,,,how soon we forget……………..it was ten years ago , but they did in fact move twice for the O’s…………look it up…………….

      • Jimmy Dundalk on said:

        I’m almost seventy years old , if I knew how to link up , I would , but thanks for the advice…………………I’m lucky to do what I do , as a retired veteran my joints and hearing is shot and my mind is right behind,,,,,,,,,,,,

        • MDExile on said:

          So I’ll mess with you first…So I’m supposed to trust your mind then?

          All kidding aside, you made a statement that we are now supposed to research and determine if true or not. “Ain’t nobody got time for that”.

          Take care.

          • Jimmy Dundalk on said:

            The two years were 1999 and 2000 , both were pre-season games , before you say these games were meaningless the Ravens were outdrawing the O’s seven to one in attendance so it meant money to both franchises…………..I hope this jogs your memory……………….

          • MDExile on said:

            Off the original topic, but…
            Orioles attendance 1999: 3,431,829; 42,368/game
            Orioles attendance 2000: 3.297,031; 40,704/game
            I can’t see how the Ravens outdrew the Orioles 7:1.

            Back to the original point, no, it does not jog my memory. I have no recollection of the Ravens moving games at the Orioles request; hence, the request for verification.

            I have searched for information. I was able to find the Orioles attendance figures above. I, however, cannot find verification of your original statement.

          • MDExile on said:

            One more comment and I’m out.

            Of course the Ravens moved the start time of those two pre-season games. The MLB schedule would have already been in place when the NFL made their schedule and created the problem in the first place, just like this year.

            On to the Browns.

  3. Rick Henry on said:

    I call BS. If Angelos and Selig were not a couple of jackasses, the O’s and MLB could have moved the game if they wanted. If it had rained last Thursday, (which it didn’t but I am making a point here) and the game had to be canceled, they would have played it on Friday or Saturday as part of a doubleheader. I think it would much easier for the teams to work around a planned doubleheader than an unplanned one.

  4. Chad Spiegel on said:

    I blame the NFL as much as the MLB. I mean doesn’t each baseball team get 160+ games a season? What does one game mean? If you compare that to an NFL game, one NFL game is equal to that of ten MLB games by my math. Plus I find more people like football than baseball these days.

  5. jaxxmjd on said:

    “Playoff race” implies that they’re competing to enter the playoffs. If you’ve watched the O’s in the last month or so, you’ll know that this is not the case.

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