Fans were ready to party, waiting in long lines outside the popular Ravens bars in Federal Hill as game time with the Patriots neared. Baltimore police closed a section of South Charles Street in anticipation of fans spilling into the road as they did after the Ravens' thrilling Divisional playoff win over the Denver Broncos.
At Ropewalk, fans were so charged up that they cheered any glimpse of a Raven during CBS' pre-game coverage. They came unhinged when they saw Lewis looking deeply moved during the national anthem. They were less thrilled with video of Billy Cundiff's missed field goal at the end of last year's AFC Championship loss against the Patriots.
"Same game, different outcome," muttered Tim Barker of Canton.
Parker and Eynon worked the superstitious angle, wearing the same clothes and watching from the same seats as they did during the previous weekend's win over the Broncos. Parker noted that his gray tabby cat, Riffraff, was also wearing the same Ray Rice jersey at home.
"They haven't lost since we put that jersey on him," he said.
Both men said it was important for the Ravens to win now, because the team will look considerably different next season.
"We need to get these guys their rings," said Eynon. "Before they retire."