After the Baltimore Ravens lost to the Tennessee Titans 26-13 on Sunday, we looked back to award one member of the losing team the Samsung 'Game Ball of the Week,' but had a tough time findng even one Raven deserving of the honor. After Baltimore put a 35-7 thumping on the Pittsburgh Steelers in week one, we could have distributed a bunch of them, but in this awful performance, even finding just one was a tall task.
On offense, QB Joe Flacco's sub-60 QB rating just won't get him any honors. The offensive line was porous and the receivers never seemed to get separation. Ray Rice totalled 96 yards running and receiving, including that 31-yard TD off of a screen pass, but otherwise, had an unspectacular afternoon.
Defensively, no one in the front seven got to Titans QB Matt Hasselbeck, but both Terrell Suggs and Haloti Ngata had solid games. Ray Lewis played his typical good game, but it's hard to truly judge his game by stats as he always gets credit for tackles just for being "in the vicinity." The secondary was burned for over 350 yards passing by Hasselbeck, so you just can't honor anyone back there. Despite Lardarius Webb's 10 tackles, he was repeatedly targeted and burned by the Titans, so I just can hand the 'Game Ball' over to him.
Our kicking game was good, but hard to say good enough to earn the weekly honor. Kick returner David Reed had a 77-yard kickoff return to put the Ravens in great field position, and had he took it all the way, I might have been inclined to give it to a guy who only touched the ball three times all game, but I can't.
That leaves the final decision a tough one and not even a definitive one, but I'm going to present the Samsung 'Game Ball of the Week' to defensive tackle Haloti Ngata. Ngata's stats were not eye-opening (6 tackles, one solo, one pass defensed), but if you watched the game closely, you saw Haloti consistently plug the middle and keep the Titans running game (2.6 yards/carry) bottled up, which partially led to the Titans going to the air and with the rate of success, why not?
Hopefully, next week when the Ravens play at the St. Louis Rams, there will be at least one players clearly deserving of this honor after an impressive winning performance.