Ravens shut out fumbling Jaguars

It is often said that offences win games while defences win championships. If that holds true, then the Baltimore Ravens must be considered legitimate title contenders, following their ugly 15-10 win in Jacksonville.

It is often said that offences win games while defences win championships. If that holds true, then the Baltimore Ravens must be considered legitimate title contenders, following their ugly 15-10 win in Jacksonville.

The Ravens have won five of their first six games, during which they have failed to score a single touchdown. They do not need to, it seems, thanks to a brutal, stifling defence. Jacksonville, themselves pre-season Super Bowl favourites, were never able to escape from their grip. The Jaguars gave up seven fumbles, while the quarterback Mark Brunell mishandled three snaps and allowed two interceptions before being replaced in the second half.

Inspired by the veteran Rod Woodson, the Ravens converted five field goals, while frustrating and confusing their opponents. The Jaguars' coach, Tom Coughlin, was less than impressed. "I've never seen anything like it in my life," he said. "I'm not going to offer any kind of excuse for that. The fumbles, the turnovers and that business, it's pathetic." With two wins from six outings, the Jaguars are in trouble. In contrast, the Ravens may not be winning many style points, but remain on course for the most successful season since the franchise was founded in 1996.

Defence was similarly to the fore in Miami, where the Dolphins cruised to their fifth win in six games, 22-13 over the Buffalo Bills. Following the retirements of the head coach, Jimmy Johnson, and the quarterback Dan Marino, most expected the Dolphins to struggle this season. Instead, as with the Ravens, they are winning with defence. The Bills' quarterback, Rob Johnson, was harried throughout, and his replacement, Doug Flutie, fared little better.

The Pittsburgh Steelers ended the unbeaten record of the New York Jets in similar fashion. Jason Gildon crushed the Jets' quarterback, Vinny Testaverde, on the game's first play. As he sought treatment for a pinched nerve, his replacement, Ray Lucas, threw three interceptions in the surprise defeat. The improving Steelers prevailed 20-3.

Detroit's 31-24 win over Green Bay was also built around a defensive effort. Green Bay's quarterback, Brett Favre, was forced into five turnovers, the most costly of which was Lamar Campbell's 42-yard interception return for a touchdown, which proved to be the difference between the two.

Offence was clearly evident in Oakland, where the Raiders and their neighbours, the San Francisco 49ers, engaged in a 62-point local dispute that was only settled in the home side's favour in overtime. The 49ers had few problems scoring points, the quarterback Jeff Garcia throwing four touchdowns and the receiver Terrell Owens catching 12 passes. However, their defence could not stop Oakland matching them. Both teams missed a game-winning field goal in the extra period, but then Rich Gannon threw a 31-yard touchdown to Tim Brown to give the Raiders an important 34-28 win.

The Cincinnati Bengals, still looking for their first victory, were unable to stop Eddie George, the Tennessee running back, rushing 36 times for 181 yards and a touchdown as the Titans prevailed 23-14.

Problems are looming for the Indianapolis Colts, who looked anything but Super Bowl favourites as Peyton Manning threw three interceptions in the 24-16 reverse in New England. Likewise, the Washington Redskins looked less than impressive, their 17-14 squeeze past Philadelphia, owing much to Darrell Green's late interception return, which set up a game-winning field goal with only four seconds remaining.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Standing the test of time: Michael J Fox and Christopher Lloyd in 'Back to the Future'
filmReview: A week late, Secret Cinema arrives as interactive screening goes Back to the Future
Travel
travel
Arts and Entertainment
Sydney and Melbourne are locked in a row over giant milk crates
artCultural relations between Sydney and Melbourne soured by row over milk crate art instillation
Arts and Entertainment
Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux play teeneage lovers in the French erotic drama 'Blue Is The Warmest Colour' - The survey found four times as many women admitting to same-sex experiences than 20 years ago
filmBlue Is The Warmest Colour, Bojack Horseman and Hobbit on the way
Arts and Entertainment
Preparations begin for Edinburgh Festival 2014
Edinburgh festivalAll the best shows to see at Edinburgh this year
News
Two giraffes pictured on Garsfontein Road, Centurion, South Africa.
i100
News
Kenny Ireland, pictured in 2010.
peopleBenidorm, actor was just 68
Environment
View from the Llanberis Track to the mountain lake Llyn
Du’r Arddu
environmentA large chunk of Mount Snowdon, in north Wales, is up for sale
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
arts + ents
News
Morrissey pictured in 2013
people
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SEN Science Teacher

£21804 - £31868 per annum + SEN allowance: Randstad Education Chelmsford: Are ...

MLD Teacher

Negotiable: Randstad Education Birmingham: MLD teachers required West Midlands...

Media Studies Teacher

Negotiable: Randstad Education Hull: Randstad Education are recruiting for a M...

History Teacher

£90 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Hull: Randstad Education are looking fo...

Day In a Page

Dress the Gaza situation up all you like, but the truth hurts

Robert Fisk on Gaza conflict

Dress the situation up all you like, but the truth hurts
Save the tiger: Tiger, tiger burning less brightly as numbers plummet

Tiger, tiger burning less brightly

When William Blake wrote his famous poem there were probably more than 100,000 tigers in the wild. These days they probably number around 3,200
5 News's Andy Bell retraces his grandfather's steps on the First World War battlefields

In grandfather's footsteps

5 News's political editor Andy Bell only knows his grandfather from the compelling diary he kept during WWI. But when he returned to the killing fields where Edwin Vaughan suffered so much, his ancestor came to life
Lifestyle guru Martha Stewart reveals she has flying robot ... to take photos of her farm

Martha Stewart has flying robot

The lifestyle guru used the drone to get a bird's eye view her 153-acre farm in Bedford, New York
Former Labour minister Meg Hillier has demanded 'pootling lanes' for women cyclists

Do women cyclists need 'pootling lanes'?

Simon Usborne (who's more of a hurtler) explains why winning the space race is key to happy riding
A tale of two presidents: George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story

A tale of two presidents

George W Bush downs his paintbrush to pen father’s life story
Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover

The dining car makes a comeback

Restaurateur Mitch Tonks has given the Great Western Pullman dining car a makeover
Gallery rage: How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?

Gallery rage

How are institutions tackling the discomfort of overcrowding this summer?
Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players

Eye on the prize

Louis van Gaal has £500,000 video surveillance system installed to monitor Manchester United players
Women's rugby: Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup

Women's rugby

Tamara Taylor adds fuel to the ire in quest to land World Cup
Save the tiger: The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

The day America’s love of backyard tigers led to a horrific bloodbath

With only six per cent of the US population of these amazing big cats held in zoos, the Zanesville incident in 2011 was inevitable
Samuel Beckett's biographer reveals secrets of the writer's time as a French Resistance spy

How Samuel Beckett became a French Resistance spy

As this year's Samuel Beckett festival opens in Enniskillen, James Knowlson, recalls how the Irish writer risked his life for liberty and narrowly escaped capture by the Gestapo
We will remember them: relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War

We will remember them

Relatives still honour those who fought in the Great War
Star Wars Episode VII is being shot on film - and now Kodak is launching a last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Kodak's last-ditch bid to keep celluloid alive

Director J J Abrams and a few digital refuseniks shoot movies on film. Simon Usborne wonders what the fuss is about
Once stilted and melodramatic, Hollywood is giving acting in video games a makeover

Acting in video games gets a makeover

David Crookes meets two of the genre's most popular voices