Ravens roll past Giants, 37-14

December 12, 2004

BALTIMORE (AP) - A redemptive performance by the Baltimore Ravens' defense sent an ineffective Eli Manning to the sidelines, where he dejectedly watched the final minutes of the New York Giants' sixth straight loss.

Manning accounted for half of the Giants' six turnovers, and Baltimore took full advantage of the miscues in a 37-14 victory Sunday.

Kyle Boller threw a career-high four touchdown passes for the Ravens, but his performance was overshadowed by a defense that permitted only 55 yards through the first three quarters.

Soon after that, New York coach Tom Coughlin mercifully pulled the rookie in favor of veteran Kurt Warner in the fourth quarter. Manning went 4-for-18 for 27 yards and two interceptions - a 0.0 quarterback rating - and lost a fumble before taking a seat.


"I don't know if I can pin it on one thing. I didn't play well, I missed throws, I made bad decisions," he said. "You've got to give some credit to the Ravens' defense."

Coming off two straight losses in which they allowed a combined 39 fourth-quarter points, the Ravens (8-5) held New York (5-8) scoreless until Warner drove the Giants for a meaningless touchdown with 3:49 left.

"Our young quarterback obviously struggled today. I gave him every opportunity to work his way through it; it was obvious at one point that it wasn't going to happen today," Coughlin said. "Kurt played very well at the end of the game, but Eli is still the starting quarterback."

Clarence Moore and Todd Heap had two touchdown catches apiece, and Chester Taylor ran for 104 yards. Jamal Lewis started at tailback for the Ravens, but saw limited action because of an ankle sprain that kept him out of last week's 27-26 loss to Cincinnati.

In that game, the Ravens allowed the Bengals to score 24 fourth-quarter points, one week after New England scored 21 points in the second half in a 24-3 win.

On Sunday, however, Baltimore's defense dominated.

"Our guys did a good job of responding after last week," Ravens defensive coordinator Mike Nolan said.

Baltimore converted four of the turnovers into 20 points and made life miserable for Manning, the top pick in the 2004 draft. Manning has one touchdown pass and six interceptions in his four NFL starts.

"This guy is the quarterback of the future for the New York Giants, period," Warner said. "You're going to have some of these games when you're trying to grow and learn in this league."

Baltimore turned two fumble recoveries into 10 points in the opening six minutes, and the Giants offered little resistance after that.

"Our thing has been turnovers, period," Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis said. "We played our type of football."

Presented ideal field position for much of the afternoon, Boller went 18-for-34 for 219 yards. He had not thrown more than two TD passes in his first 21 NFL starts.

The Ravens forced four first-half turnovers and limited New York to 39 yards in building a 27-7 lead. Manning was 3-for-11 for 21 yards and two interceptions, and things didn't get much better in the second half.

"It wasn't just him. I think it was a lot of people were confused, myself included," Giants receiver Amani Toomer said. "It was crazy, some of the stuff they came up with."

After calling the opening coin flip correctly, the Giants couldn't do much right.

Rookie Derrick Ward fumbled the opening kickoff after being hit by T.J. Slaughter, and Baltimore recovered on the New York 27. Boller then tossed an alley-oop pass that 6-foot-6 Moore caught over 6-foot Will Peterson for a 12-yard score.

New York's next series ended with Lewis pouncing on a fumble by Barber, and four plays later Matt Stover kicked a 46-yard field goal for a 10-0 lead.

Manning was then intercepted by Gary Baxter, and although Baltimore didn't convert that takeaway into points, the Ravens later moved 87 yards to go up 17-0 midway through the second quarter.

Osi Umenyiora got the Giants to 17-7 by running 50 yards with a Boller fumble, but that would be the last time New York reached the end zone until late.

The Ravens took a 20-point halftime lead when Ed Reed intercepted a pass and lateraled to Deion Sanders, who took it to the 33 to set up a 44-yard field goal by Stover. It was the eighth interception of the season for Reed, tops in the NFL and a Ravens record.

Notes: Giants LB Barrett Green left in the first quarter with a knee sprain and did not return. ... Reed's 20th career INT tied Ray Lewis, Rod Woodson and Duane Starks for a franchise high.

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