A few weeks ago I sent a Facebook friend request to my 15 year old niece, whose response to my request was very unflattering to say the least. She emphatically replied, “I don’t know if I want to be your Facebook friend Uncle Argin…. u post too much stuff about a team that never wins (A.K.A. The Chiefs) .” As my jaw dropped to the floor, I quickly responded, “Contrary to what you may believe the Chiefs are going to the Super Bowl this year, but whatever you do just don’t become a Ravens fan,” to which she replied, “OOOOoooohhh your a little late Uncle Argin ha-ha. I’m already a Ravens fan. BTW Chiefs are no where close to Super Bowl lol :p.” Chiefs Nation, as a life long Baltimorean, and a Chief of 24 years, this has been my experience. So, today we will set the record straight about the Chiefs/Ravens all-time series which began in 1999. As of today, the series stands tied at 3-3 including the playoffs.
After being dognapped from the city of Cleveland, Ohio in 1996, the Cleveland Browns quickly became the Baltimore Ravens. By this time, I was in my 9th year as a Chiefs fan and had no interest in switching teams. The Colts had already been gone for nearly 15 years, and Baltimore was beginning a new chapter in the city’s professional football history. By October 21, 1999, when the Chiefs and Ravens first met, the NFL was beginning a new chapter of its own when the league implemented the new instant replay rule allowing each team two coaching challenges in each game that would permit a review of specific types of plays. Also in 1999, the Baltimore Ravens had adopted a new team logo for their helmets. But, the most intriguing fact about that year was that the Chiefs’ late great Hall of Fame linebacker Derrick Thomas and current Baltimore Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis played against each other. Be mindful that this was the ONLY time that Thomas and Lewis ever faced each other on the football field. This was a historical event because this game occurred 14 weeks prior to Ray Lewis being arrested for double murder, and 15 weeks prior to Derrick Thomas’ death due to injuries that he sustained in a car accident. Neither Ray nor Derrick had any game changing statistics in their only meeting.
For the 1999 season, Brian Billick was in his first year as head coach of the Baltimore Ravens, and Gunther Cunningham was in his first year as head coach of the Kansas City Chiefs. So, on Thursday, October 21st of that year, the 4-2 Kansas City Chiefs walked into PSI Net Stadium (before the name was changed to M&T Bank Stadium), and played the 2-4 Baltimore Ravens. Chiefs’ quarterback, Elvis Grbac, who eventually ended his career as a Raven, was 9 of 16 for 112 yards with two touchdowns, and Chiefs running back Bam Morris ran 16 times for 70 yards and one touchdown. While the Ravens quarterbacks, Stoney Case went 15 of 37 for 103 yards with three interceptions, and Tony Banks went 8 of 14 for 69 yards. The Ravens Errict Rhett ran 19 times for 59 yards and one touchdown. The Chiefs went on to win this game by a score of 35-8.
Then on September 28, 2003, they met again in Baltimore in the re-named M&T Bank Stadium. The 4-0 Chiefs beat the 2-2 Ravens for a second time in their brief history when Dante “The Human Joystick” Hall returned a 97-yard kick-off return for a touchdown with five minutes left in the game to give the Chiefs a 17-10 victory. In this game, Chiefs quarterback, Trent Green went 17 of 28 for 159 yards and a touchdown, while former Raven, Preist Holmes, ran 22 times for 90 yards. Tony Gonzales finished this game with three receptions for 13 yards and a touchdown. As for the Ravens, quarterback Kyle Boller went 15 of 26 for 140 yards and threw three interceptions, and Jamal Lewis ran 26 times for 115 yards and a touchdown. Both teams had three sacks each, and the Chiefs’ cornerback Dexter McCleon grabbed two interceptions while safety Greg Wesley snatched one. The Chiefs finished that season with a 13-3 record, while the Ravens finished the year at 10-6.
By October 4, 2004, the Ravens and Chiefs match-up had reached the national level when they had a thriller on Monday Night Football. The world watched the Kansas City Chiefs defeat the Baltimore Ravens AGAIN. The 1-3 Chiefs beat the 2-2 Baltimore Ravens by a score of 27-24. In this game, the score was 17-17 at half-time, and by games end the Chiefs had racked up 25 first downs. The Chiefs also had four sacks by names such as Ryan Sims, Lional Dalton, Gary Stills, and Eric Hicks (remember those guys Chiefs Nation?). Trent Green went 21 of 31 for 223 yards and a touchdown. Priest Holmes ran 33 times for 125 yards with two touchdowns. For the Ravens, Kyle Boller, went 10-17 for 154 yards and one touchdown, while Jamal Lewis ran 15 times for 73 yards and a touchdown. The most notable plays of that game was the 57-yard touchdown pass from Boller to Randy Hymes, and the 58-yard punt return for a touchdown by B.J. Sams, both occurring in the 2nd quarter. The Ravens finished the season at 9-7, and the Chiefs at 7-9.
Things began to turn for the Baltimore Ravens on December 10, 2006 when they visited Arrowhead Stadium for the first time ever. The 10-3 Ravens faced-off against Herm Edwards’ 7-6 Chiefs and led the game 6-0 by halftime. The late great Steve McNair was brilliant. He was 21-27 for 283 yards and a touchdown, while Jamal Lewis rushed 24 times for 81 yards and a touchdown. Ravens wide receiver, Mark Clayton, finished the game with five receptions for 112 yards and a touchdown, and in addition to this, his 87 touchdown reception from McNair in the 3rd quarter proved to be the fatal blow that put away the Chiefs. The Chiefs’ Trent Green went 15-27 for 178 yards with a touchdown and two interceptions. Larry Johnson ran wild with 23 carries for 120 yards. Samie Parker led all Chiefs receivers with five catches for 71 yards; however the Chiefs gave up five sacks to Ray Lewis, Trevor Pryce, Bart Scott, Terrell “T Sizzle” Suggs, and Adalius Thomas.
Game 5 was more of the same when the Chiefs returned to M&T Bank Stadium to face the Ravens on September 13, 2009. I was in attendance for this game! This is the game in which John McGraw blocked a Sam Koch punt directly in front of me for a touchdown in the 2nd quarter. And with the score tied at 24 with 5:28 left in the 4th quarter, I watched the Chiefs give up 21 unanswered points to lose the game by a score of 38-24. Poor Brodie Croyle simply fell apart at the end of the game. He looked okay in the first half, and finished the game 16-24 for 177 yards and two touchdowns. Chiefs’ running back Larry Johnson was stuffed by the Ravens and finished with 11 carries for 20 yards. Jamal Charles was in transition to take Johnson’s job during this season, and had four receptions for 29 yards. Dwayne Bowe had four receptions for 40 yards and a touchdown, and Tamba Hali had a sack while Derrick Johnson had an interception. Joe Flacco, in his first game against the Chiefs, lit the Chiefs up as he went 26-43 for 307 yards and threw three touchdowns. Ray Rice ran 19 times for 108 yards, with Todd Heap and Mark Clayton each having five receptions and a touchdown. On defense, the Ravens’ Jarret Johnson had two sacks, and Trevor Pryce had a sack and a forced fumble.
This game is the only playoff game that the two teams have ever played against one another. It was played on January 9, 2011 at Arrowhead Stadium; and it was the second meeting between the two teams in Kansas City. The 12-4 Ravens waltzed into Arrowhead a better and more experienced team than the 10-6 AFC West Champs. The Chiefs took an early 7-3 lead when Jamaal Charles shook the Ravens defense for a 41-yard touchdown run in the first quarter. After that, it was all down-hill for the Chiefs. Billy Cundiff kicked three field goals, Terrell Suggs had two sacks, and Ray Lewis also had a sack. Tamba Hali of the Chiefs had two sacks and a fumble recovery, Tyson Jackson had a half-sack, and Jovan Belcher had 1.5 sacks. On the offensive side of the ball, Charlie Weiss, for some God forsaken reason simply stopped giving the ball to Jamaal Charles, who finished the game with nine carries for 82 yards and a touchdown (an avg. of 9 yards per carry). Matt “the Moose” Cassel had a horrible game as he went 9 of 17 for 70 yards with three picks. On the other side of the ball, the Ravens Joe Flacco went 25-34 for 265 yards and two touchdowns, while Ray Rice and Willis McGahee ran 27 times for 101 yards and a touchdown.
GAME SEVEN on OCTOBER SEVEN
On October 7, 2012, the Kansas City Chiefs will have a chance to not only win the tie-breaker against the Ravens, but also get revenge for the 2009 playoff loss at home. The great news for the Chiefs is that they don’t have to worry about Terrell Suggs coming off of the corner because he foolishly tore his Achilles in a pick up basketball game a month ago. However, the Ravens were lucky enough to draft linebacker Courtney Upshaw this year to replace Suggs. With a new and improved offensive line, the Chiefs should be able to protect Cassel long enough for him to get the ball to any of his new weapons. The Chiefs will destroy the Ravens at home this year, and finally put to rest all of the trash talking that comes from Ravens’ fans. Albeit, I will quote Bart Scott of the New York Jets from an interview that he gave during his team’s 2010-2011 playoff victory over the New England Patriots when he trademarked the phrase, “Can’t Wait!!”