The members of the Ravens secondary have heard time and again how they're the weak link of this team.
Tonight, without arguably their top three members in safety Ed Reed and cornerbacks Domonique Foxworth and Lardarius Webb, the Ravens' defensive backs made a statement, clamping down and allowing the Jets just 60 total passing yards.
"It's really sweet because this whole offseason all you heard about was our secondary," cornerback Fabian Washington said. "It felt good to go out and perform well in the first game. Now, we have to move on to next week."
OK, so the Ravens didn't exactly face Peyton Manning and the Colts' offense out there tonight. The Jets were without their top wide receiver in Santonio Holmes, and quarterback Mark Sanchez looked more like Kyle Boller than the future Pro Bowler that everyone is hyping him up to be.
But the Baltimore DBs got the job done despite the fact that they still have guys sliding into the lineup and switching roles.
Washington made his first start in 10 months since tearing his ACL last year, Chris Carr started at corner with Webb still not fully healthy, Tom Zbikowski filled in for the injured Reed, and Haruki Nakamura moved from his safety spot to nickel back.
Even with all the moving and shaking in the Baltimore secondary, the Jets' longest passing play all night went for 13 yards, and discounting the five receptions by New York running backs, the Ravens allowed only five receptions to wide receivers or tight ends.
"Our secondary covered great," head coach John Harbaugh said. "There was nowhere to throw the ball all night long."
A lot of the credit can go to the Baltimore front-seven, which pressured Sanchez all night and give him little time to look downfield. But when Sanchez did try and make plays through the air, the Ravens were there.
Still, Carr says it's far too early to start prancing around and calling out the doubters. The six-year veteran says there's lots of work left to be done.
"We can't gloat about our performance tonight," Carr said. "We want to be consistent, and that's the true sign of a good secondary. We don't want a lot of peaks and valleys. If we can play consistently well like we did tonight throughout the season, that's our goal."