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Sports

January 15, 2013

Ravens embrace underdog role in AFC title game

(Continued)

“It’s been a long road getting back to this point, and the way we left it last year didn’t sit well with us,” tight end Dennis Pitta said. “So we’re excited to be in this position against and give it another shot.”

Because the Patriots and Ravens are usually among the top teams in the AFC, they have met quite often in recent years. Baltimore’s 31-30 win in September was the fifth matchup between the teams since the start of the 2009 season. New England is 3-2, including 1-1 in the playoffs.

“It’s definitely grown into quite a rivalry, we would like to say. I don’t know how they feel about that,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. “But we have tremendous respect for the New England Patriots. ... They just have a tremendous staff, tremendous players, tremendous tradition. It’s always a huge challenge for us, but it’s one we’re excited about and look forward to.”

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