The question was about quarterback Kevin Kolb taking “heat” – or too much of it – given the way the first six games had gone. Coach Ken Whisenhunt shook his head, although his answer wasn’t just about Kolb.
“I don’t think anybody can take too much heat when your record is where it is,” Whisenhunt said. “We have to be very clear about it. Our expectations are not to be where we are as a team. We are disappointed. It hurts. We hurt all the time, because we want to be good. We want our fans to be proud of our team. We haven’t done that.
“Criticism is justified. That’s this game. If fans weren’t out there caring then we’d be concerned. All I’ll tell you is that we are working hard and we that we believe we are going to get it fixed.”
Getting it fixed this weekend in Baltimore is a major task. The time change shouldn’t be an issue – I write this at 30,000 feet on the flight east on Friday – although playing better is. I remember the last time the Cards played in Baltimore/played the Ravens. That was the 2007 visit, in which Kurt Warner had his initial “Wow, maybe he’ll have a rebirth” thoughts has he shredded the Ravens splitting time with Matt Leinart (Anquan Boldin, coincidentally, had 14 catches for 181 yards that day too).
— Given that Whisenhunt acknowledged Monday that the fear was that running back Beanie Wells was done for the season when he first hurt his knee last weekend against the Steelers, it’s amazing to me he was able to practice as much as he did this week. I thought there would be three DNPs, and instead, Beanie got in a pair of improving “limited” showings. Will he play Sunday? I think he is about as truly “questionable” as a player can get – which is 50/50.
— Speaking of questionables, I can’t see how tight end Todd Heap doesn’t make it back on the field. He downplayed going back to Baltimore, but at the same time, admitted it’s hard to not carry the knowledge of playing his former team. (Plus, Heap made a big deal this weekend by taking out a full-page ad in the Baltimore Sun newspaper.)
His former Ravens mates are looking forward to seeing him too. “The love is always going to be there off the field,” Baltimore linebacker Ray Lewis said. “Of course, once you put on a different colored jersey, here we go again. If the ball comes his way, and it just happens I’m there, I might tap him on his shoulder a little bit.”
— Speaking of carrying the knowledge of playing his former team, I don’t believe for a second Anquan Boldin is treating this like any other game.
— And speaking of Heap, he was at the center of that 2007 game. The Ravens won that game by kicking a field goal right at the end of the game after Heap made an impressive catch – and somehow held on when Adrian Wilson absolutely blew him up on a hit (pictured below). Wilson was flagged (I still don’t think it should have been a personal foul given the rules at the time, although these days, it might be) and the Ravens got 15 free yards toward their field goal.
— It was the story of Ravens tackle Michael Oher that was immortalized in the movie “The Blind Side.” The Cardinals have their own tie – practice squad cornerback Marshay Green is close friends with Oher, having played together in college at Ole Miss.
“He was one of the first people I met and ever since then we’ve been tight,” Green said. Green spent a ton of time with the family, including Oher’s adoptive parents Leigh Anne and Sean Tuohy. Then, the movie came out.
“It was crazy,” Green said. “I had spent my whole college career with the guy, we joked around, all kind of stuff, playing video games — I never thought it’d be a movie.”
— Given the Ravens’ status as the No. 1 defense and their own offensive troubles, this is a huge game for the Cards’ own defense. Darnell Dockett declined to speak this week – he is from the Baltimore area and it’s safe to say this game means a ton to him – but he did tweet at one point, in part, “I gave 6 games to give the other cats some now its time to give 90 a run.” Not sure if that means Dockett is getting more free reign or what, but he will be one to watch Sunday.
On to Baltimore.
Tags: Beanie Wells, Darnell Dockett, Ken Whisenhunt, Kevin Kolb, Marshay Green, Ravens, Todd Heap
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