It's a game Patriots fans have been half dreading, half anticipating ever since Baltimore Ravens ran all over the Patriots in front of their home crowd at Gillette last season. The devastating loss eliminated the Patriots from the playoffs, and nobody has forgotten about it in New England.
Of all the games played by the Patriots this season, the Week 6 matchup feels like the biggest hurdle the team has faced so far. While the New York Jets' game was tough, it's the bad taste that still lingers from the playoffs that has New England fans wondering — can the Patriots pull out a win against Ray Rice and the big, bad Ravens?
For much of the season, the Patriots have been viewed as the underdogs, and this weekend will be no different. A win on Sunday for the Patriots will make a huge statement in the NFL, but what exactly is riding on this victory?
Even though the playoff loss is in the past, a win on Sunday would have a little taste of revenge to it. By defeating the Ravens at Gillette, the Patriots are proving that they are still a team to be reckoned with. While a win in Week 6 doesn't carry as much clout as a win in the playoffs, it would be nice to see the Pats dominate the Ravens. And as the saying goes, revenge is sweet.
Widely considered one of the best, if not the best, team in the NFL, a win over the Ravens would mean big things for the Patriots. To compile back-to-back wins over two very good football teams in Week 4 and Week 6 would definitely shift a few opinions in the NFL. The word underdog would no longer apply, and their status would elevate to fear-worthy levels.
It feels like it's been years since the Patriots have hit the gridiron, and when they run out onto the football field tomorrow, there will be a big gap missing in the receiving corps. While the addition of Deion Branch has filled that gap considerably, Sunday's matchup will be a test to see how the Patriots fare without Randy Moss.
Filling Moss' shoes won't be easy, and no one could ever replace the presence he had on the football field. But, a win against the tough Ravens' defense will be a promising sign for the Patriots' new-look offense.
A win for the Patriots tomorrow could hold a lot of weight for the Patriots moving forward this season, proving they are still a team that is capable of contending in their conference and in the league.
What kind of statement do you think the Patriots can make with a win against the Ravens? Share your thoughts below.
Thursday, Oct. 14: Which Ravens player is the biggest threat to the Patriots?
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