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Wilfork not afraid to admit when Ravens became Pats’ rivals

AFC Championship - Baltimore Ravens v New England Patriots Getty Images

Patriots coach Bill Belichick, like many coaches, to make sure no game becomes more important than the others.

But for his players, tonight’s game at the Ravens (which you can see on NBC) will take on a greater importance, for what the opponent represents.

Asked when the Ravens game took on that kind of weight for the Patriots, and defensive tackle Vince Wilfork pointed back to the 2009 playoffs, when Baltimore walked into Gillette Stadium and walked out with an easy 33-14 win.

When they kicked our tails — when they embarrassed us,” Wilfork said, via Steve Buckley of the Boston Herald. “And they did a pretty good job of embarrassing us that year. From that day on, it’s been, like, you know what, we have to mark them on the calendar, just like I’m sure they mark us on the calendar.

“Over years, you develop that. It’s like a division game. It’s like the Steelers. [They] are like a division game because we’re always playing them. We know each other so well, and when you play a team a lot, and they’re a good team, that’s when it starts.”

Last year’s AFC Championship Game was the latest evidence, which will doubtless spark the other side. But Wilfork knows they’re taking the Ravens’ best shot.

“We’re going to have to play almost a perfect game to walk away, on the road, Sunday night, to get a victory,” Wilfork said. “This team, right now, stacks as one of the best Baltimore ever had.

“I’m pretty sure they’re gonna be riding high. They’re going to be very excited. To finally get us at their place, on Sunday night football, early . . . that whole stadium will be revved up.”

And so will a national televised audience.

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9 Responses to “Wilfork not afraid to admit when Ravens became Pats’ rivals”
  1. onlysane1intheroom says: Sep 23, 2012 9:26 AM

    Vince is a great guy…and a heck of an athlete.

  2. somekat says: Sep 23, 2012 10:16 AM

    “this team shapes up to be one of the best Baltimore has had”

    Uhhhhh….how? Reed and Lewis are both a step slow, the Eagles were leaving them sprawled all over the field last week. The only play of any importance either made was a pick by Reed. A pick that deflected of someone 15 yards away and bounced right to him, not exactly a all-pro play.

    Their O-Line is average at best (evidence, the Eagles were in Flacco’s face all day, and only blitzed 6 times all game)

    This Baltimore team is on a downward slope. They are still a playoff team, but they are not in any way, shape, or form, an elite team. They are an above average team, that thinks they are the same bullies they were 3-4 years ago. The only difference is, the rest of the league is willing to stand up to them now, and like ALL bullies, when that happens, they lose, and then cry about how the other guys were bullies.

  3. contract says: Sep 23, 2012 10:17 AM

    Not like the Steelers, because the Patriots always kick our behinds.

  4. eyeh8goodell says: Sep 23, 2012 10:29 AM

    Actually, i’d say it was the 2007 regular season meeting. I’m a Steelers fan, but the Ravens should have won that game. Patriots drives kept alive by phantom PI calls. Garbage roughing the passer calls for Brady. That was the game the officiating was so bad and slanted in NE’s favor that Bart Scott picked up one of the flags and threw it at the back of the endzone. That was also one of the biggest gaffes in Rex Ryan’s history with the timeout call on 4th down late in the 4th.

  5. warewolf94 says: Sep 23, 2012 10:41 AM

    Vince is an incredible athlete

  6. ravenator says: Sep 23, 2012 10:59 AM

    Can’t wait to watch the Ravens dominate this game at home, I’ll be there, screaming my lungs out

  7. all4patriots says: Sep 23, 2012 10:59 AM

    Since the Ravens have beaten the Patriots only one time in the history of their franchise, it stands to reason that one win would be important in making it a rivalry. 7-1, not 8-0. Otherwise it would be like the rialry between a hammer and a nail.

  8. zoltajem says: Sep 23, 2012 11:32 AM

    eyeh8goodell- I’m not a Ravens fan by any means, but that 2007 game still sticks out in my mind as probably the worst and most slanted officiating I’ve ever seen in the NFL. It was unbelievable.

  9. randallflagg52 says: Sep 23, 2012 6:02 PM

    zoltajem says:
    Sep 23, 2012 11:32 AM
    eyeh8goodell- I’m not a Ravens fan by any means, but that 2007 game still sticks out in my mind as probably the worst and most slanted officiating I’ve ever seen in the NFL. It was unbelievable.

    ===================================

    Did you see the 2009 Ravens/Pats game? The one where brady was coming back for the ACL injury? That was a SB XL level of ref ineptness.

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