Ravens, Colts take different paths to playoffs

Ravens, Colts take different paths to playoffs
January 1, 2013, 4:45 pm
Share This Post

Flacco: Benching was best for team

The Indianapolis Colts have won five of their last six games. The Ravens have lost four of their last five.

Ask them both, and they have momentum going into Sunday’s wild-card playoff game at M&T Bank Stadium.

The Colts’ only loss during that stretch was to the Houston Texans, a division foe they defeated in the regular-season finale. The Ravens’ only win during their stretch was vs. the New York Giants, which allowed them to clinch the AFC North and a home playoff game.

“You’d love to go into the playoffs with momentum,” Colts coach Chuck Pagano said. “We talked at great length about that as a football team this past week.”

Ravens coach John Harbaugh could’ve won his finale at the Cincinnati Bengals, but he decided that being healthy for the opener would be momentum enough.

After two series, he pulled his starters and lost 23-17. Five starters didn't even dress.

“We thought about everything,” he said. “We really did. We took all of it into consideration and we weighed it all out. We felt like we could win the game with the guys we had, and we almost pulled it off. With a little better field position, we would have pulled it off. … We tried to win the game, but some other factors weighed heavier in our minds.”

The New Orleans Saints won the 2010 Super Bowl after losing the last three games of the regular season.

"Whatever team plays the best in the playoffs is going to win it, so (if) you want to call that getting hot, I'd say it's pretty important," Harbaugh said. "Starting this week, whoever plays the best will be the champion."