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Wednesday's Sports in Brief

Wednesday's Sports in Brief

NEW YORK (AP) Sensational comebacks have Peyton Manning and Adrian Peterson headed for the Pro Bowl.

Also selected to the NFL's all-star game on Wednesday was Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III, one of two rookies chosen for the Jan. 27 all-star game.

Manning missed all of the 2011 season with neck and back problems that required several operations. He then signed with Denver as a free agent and has led the Broncos on a 10-game winning streak to take the AFC West.

Manning, whose 12th Pro Bowl is a record for quarterbacks, ranks fourth in league passing this year, having thrown 34 touchdowns and 11 interceptions.

San Francisco had the most players selected, nine, including six from its second-ranked defense. Houston was next with eight, six on offense.

One other rookie, Minnesota kicker Blair Walsh, was chosen. Walsh has nine field goals of at least 50 yards, an NFL mark.

FLORHAM PARK, N.J. (AP) - Tim Tebow says he never asked out of running wildcat plays last week, but the New York Jets backup quarterback acknowledges that Rex Ryan may have misunderstood him.

Tebow said that he told Ryan last Tuesday that he was ``definitely disappointed'' he wasn't going to be the starting quarterback in place of the benched Mark Sanchez and added that he told the coach he wanted to play ``regular quarterback.''

PITTSBURGH (AP) - Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger says despite a statistically successful year, his play was a key factor in Pittsburgh (7-8) failing to make the playoffs for only the fourth time since 2001.

``A lot of it just has to do with me not playing well enough down the stretch,'' Roethlisberger said. ``Fourth-quarter drives or last-minute throws, I'm just not making it happen, so my best answer would be that I just didn't play well enough.''

The Steelers controlled their playoff fate until a 13-10 loss to Cincinnati on Sunday eliminated them from the postseason.

OWINGS MILLS, Md. (AP) - Linebacker Ray Lewis has been added to the Baltimore Ravens' 53-man roster, but coach John Harbaugh says the 17-year veteran will not play Sunday against the Cincinnati Bengals.

The 37-year-old was placed on the injured reserve-designated to return list after tearing his right triceps on Oct. 14. He returned to practice on Dec. 5, and in order for him to be eligible for the playoffs, the Ravens had to add him to the active roster by Wednesday.

DALLAS (AP) - A grand jury in Texas has formally indicted Dallas Cowboys nose tackle Josh Brent on one count of intoxication manslaughter.

Brent is charged in connection with a Dec. 8 crash that killed his friend and Cowboys practice squad member Jerry Brown. He is out of jail on $100,000 bond.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

DETROIT (AP) - Ryan Radcliff threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to Cody Wilson with 5:11 remaining to give Central Michigan the lead, and Western Kentucky was stopped on fourth down when a field goal would have tied the game in the final minute, giving the Chippewas a 24-21 win in the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl.

BASEBALL

BOSTON (AP) - The Red Sox acquired All-Star closer Joel Hanrahan from the Pittsburgh Pirates in a six-player deal.

Boston also received infielder Brock Holt and gave up right-handers Mark Melancon and Stolmy Pimentel, infielder Ivan DeJesus Jr. and first baseman-outfielder Jerry Sands.

Over the past two seasons, the right-handed Hanrahan had 76 saves, fourth most in the National League, and a 2.24 ERA. Last season, he was 5-2 with a 2.72 ERA and 36 saves.

PRO BASKETBALL

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - The NBA game between the Indiana Pacers and Chicago Bulls was postponed by the snowstorm that hit the Indianapolis area.

The Pacers announced the postponement a few hours before the scheduled tip-off. No date had been set for rescheduling the game.

SOCCER

MANCHESTER, England (AP) - Manchester United took a seven-point lead in the Premier League standings as the season reached the halfway point. Javier Hernandez scored the winning goal in the 90th minute as United had to come from behind three times for a 4-3 victory over Newcastle.

Second-place Manchester City lost 1-0 at Sunderland to fall further behind United. Chelsea is now only four points behind City after Juan Mata clinched a 1-0 victory at Norwich.

MANCHESTER, England (AP) - Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney will miss up to three weeks with a knee injury.

Manager Alex Ferguson says he strained a ligament behind the knee when he tried to hit a volley late in practice Tuesday.

PRO HOCKEY

MONTREAL (AP) - With the NHL lockout grinding through its fourth month, Montreal Canadiens defenseman Josh Gorges looked to Twitter for a hockey game.

The 28-year-old Gorges extended an open invitation to his followers on the social network to join him at a Montreal rink during the Boxing Day holiday.

Fans responded in droves.

The scene didn't look much different from those playing out at countless parks and ponds across the country - except for the high turnout.

Dozens of players, ranging widely in age and skill level, packed into a rink in the city's Verdun neighborhood for a chance to skate alongside an NHL player.

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Baltimore Ravens Week 6 awards after shutout win over Titans

Baltimore Ravens Week 6 awards after shutout win over Titans

The Baltimore Ravens went into the Tennessee Titans' home and completely robbed them in a 21-0 shutout win.

Here are the players and plays that stood out from the afternoon.

PLAYER(S) OF THE GAME: Ravens Defense

The Ravens defense had a historic afternoon recording a franchise-record 11 sacks. Yup, you read that right. 11 sacks.

Za'Darius Smith led the way with three, followed by Patrick Onwuasor with two and Matthew Judon, Terrell Suggs, Tony Jefferson, Kenny Young, Anthony Levine Sr. and Chris Wormley with one apiece. The 11 sacks tied for the second most by a team in league history and the most in a game since 2012.  It was so historic, the Ravens changed their Twitter name to included 11 S's. 

But that wasn't the only impressive part of the Ravens' afternoon. Marcus Mariota was limited to 10 completions and the defense allowed just 51 passing yards  —  the fewest in franchise history  — and 55 rushing yards. The Titans finished the afternoon 1-for-10 on third down as well.

With the shutout, the Ravens defense cemented its place as one of the NFL's most elite units in 2018. A win that must have been extra sweet after a 12-9 overtime loss to the Browns the week prior and with former defensive coordinator Dean Pees staring back from the opposite sideline. The Ravens remain the only NFL team to not allow a second-half touchdown this season. 

COMEBACK PLAYER OF THE GAME: Michael Crabtree

After dropping what would have been the game-winning touchdown Week 5 against the Browns, Michael Crabtree said his priority this week was to get back into the lab and correct his mistakes. Out the gate, the veteran receiver stayed true to his word finishing the Ravens' first drive catching three passes for 52 yards and one touchdown. Earlier in the week, Joe Flacco had faith his receiver would get over the hump of six drops in five games and was willing to stand by him until it happened.

"Besides just trying to give him the confidence that, you know, I'm still going his way when he calls for it and I still believe that it's going to be the difference...it's something that he'll definitely get over," Flacco said.

The patience worked as Crabtree finished the day with six receptions for 93 yards and one touchdown leading all Ravens receivers.

But more importantly, the relationship between Crabtree and Flacco continues to grow.

"That’s trust. That’s what you need in football, you know," Crabtree said postgame. "Quarterback, receiver relationship. It’s only going to get better. It’s all about how much time you put in, how much work you put in. I’m new; this is my first year here so I got to do what I got to do."

STAT OF THE GAME: Flacco makes his way into the history books

With 25 completions Sunday against the Titans, Flacco became the third different quarterback in NFL history to complete 25 or more passes in nine consecutive games, per the NFL's communication department. Drew Brees sits atop the list with 11 and 10 consecutive games followed by Peyton Manning with nine. Flacco finished the 21-0 win 25-for-37 with 238 yards, one touchdown and one interception. 

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Ravens pile up team-record 11 sacks against former defensive coordinator

Ravens pile up team-record 11 sacks against former defensive coordinator

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- The Baltimore Ravens swarmed around their new defensive coordinator, Don "Wink" Martindale, celebrating after a game that will go down in the record books.

Getting 11 sacks along with a shutout against the man Martindale replaced makes this mark even sweeter.

Za'Darius Smith had a career-high three sacks as the Ravens piled up the franchise-record Sunday in routing the Tennessee Titans 21-0 in the rain, just missing the NFL record shared by five teams by one.

Baltimore coach John Harbaugh called it an "historic defensive performance."

The Ravens (4-2) smothered Tennessee, allowing just 106 yards of offense while they turned Marcus Mariota's day into the worst of his NFL career. Eight different Ravens sacked Mariota, and four got their first sack this season at his expense. The Titans never got closer to the end zone than the Ravens 37, each time pushed back with yet another sack.

"We want to be something special out there," Ravens linebacker Matthew Judon said. "For Wink, it's great to go against his predecessor, and he stepped up and we came through and pitched a shutout. You don't ever talk about unicorns while you're doing it, but we got it done. We got it done for him, and we celebrated after."

Martindale was promoted to defensive coordinator when Dean Pees retired after last season. His retirement lasted less than a month with first-year coach Mike Vrabel luring Pees to join him as the Titans' defensive coordinator.

Asked about Pees, Smith only said that the coordinator told him at his pro day at Kentucky that the linebacker would be a Raven.

"Love him to death, but hey, we won tonight, so we're going to leave it at that," Smith said with a smile.

The Titans (3-3) had not been shut out at home since the franchise relocated to Tennessee.

"That's the headline: The `Tennessee Titans didn't do nearly enough on all levels to win the football game,'" Vrabel said. "Or even make it competitive."

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