The first ball quarterback Joe Flacco threw in the wide receiver's direction ended up as a 21-yard completion that led to a Billy Cundiff 48-yard field goal and a seven-point lead that the Ravens eventually turned into a 20-13 win against the Houston Texans Sunday in an AFC divisional playoff game at M&T Bank Stadium.
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- Baltimore Ravens
- Anquan Boldin
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M & T Bank Stadium, 1101 Russell St, Baltimore, MD 21230-2602, USA
"Yeah, I felt good," Boldin said. "I went to Joe before the game and told him, 'If you see me out there in one-on-one coverage, just throw it up. I'll make a play.' Fortunately, he was able to do that."
Boldin, who led the offense in receiving with 887 yards, led the Ravens against Houston in yards (73) and tied running back Ray Rice for the team lead in receptions (four).
His 10-yard touchdown grab gave the team a 17-3 advantage with 1:08 left in the opening frame.
"[H]e brings that energy," said Flacco, who had completed just seven of 26 passes to wide receivers in Boldin's absence. "Obviously, he was able to catch a couple balls early on and move the chains a little bit for us. I think any time you get a guy back like that, everybody on our offense sees that and gains confidence from it and gains a little bit more energy from it."
Now Boldin, who played for the 2008 Arizona Cardinals team that advanced to Super Bowl XLIII, gets a chance to help the Ravens get to Super Bowl XLVI.
"For me, my vision is much bigger than this game," he said. "I came here for one reason and one reason only — that's to win a championship. We felt like Houston was in our way today, and we wanted to go out and make enough plays to win."
Harbaugh spoke to brother after Saturday win
Ravens coach John Harbaugh confirmed that he spoke to his brother Jim after the San Francisco 49ers outlasted the New Orleans Saints, 36-32, Saturday evening.
"We talked last night after the game," John Harbaugh said in his post-game comments. "He was pretty happy. I was happy for him. But I couldn't get quite as happy as he was. He was fired up, and I think he was really proud of his team. I'm proud of him. I'm proud of Jim. I'm proud of his staff over there. But I haven't been thinking that much about him, to be honest with you."
Birk shoots down CBS report
Prior to Sunday's contest, former NFL general manager and current CBS Sports analyst Charlie Casserly said that Matt Birk would retire after this season, his 14th in the league and third with the Ravens.
Birk, who was recently named the team's Walter Payton Man of the Year, disputed the report.
"I don't know. It could be 100 percent true or it could be zero percent true, and there's probably no in-between," said Birk, who at 35 is the second-oldest player on the roster behind inside linebacker Ray Lewis. "No, I haven't made that decision yet, and I don't know Charlie Casserly. I mean, I know who he is, but he didn't talk to me, and that's all I can say."
Wilson makes impact
As the blocking tight end and a special-teams contributor, Kris Wilson doesn't usually get many chances on offense.
But the eight-year veteran took advantage when he caught a one-yard pass on a play-action fake by Flacco to give the Ravens a 7-3 lead in the first quarter.