Snow bowl a unique experience for Ravens (plus notes)

The snow was falling long before the game started, covering the M&T Bank Stadium turf, obscuring the yard markers and completely changing the dynamic of the game ahead.

The Ravens came out on top 29-26 after an incredible finish that was played with the field mostly plowed.

But the majority of the game was held in wintry weather that only added to the list of strange conditions the team has seen over the last calendar year.

“We played in Denver. That was crazy. We played in a tornado in Chicago. We played in a monsoon in preseason in Tampa,” wideout Jacoby Jones said. “It was (like) Disneyland on Ice today.”

Said coach John Harbaugh: “Is there other weather we haven’t seen yet? I don’t even want to say that because something is going to happen. I’m not repeating that. It’s a bad omen.”

The slippery surface certainly was the main way the snow altered the game. But it also didn’t help that play went on during near-blizzard conditions at some moments.

“The first half, you could hardly see. I’m glad they wore purple pants. I’m not sure we would have ever seen them out there when the snow was coming down as heavy as it was,” Harbaugh said. “We just had to figure out what we could do. When the weather let up a little bit, we could throw the ball a little bit more, and we felt like we needed to throw the ball a little bit against these guys.

“They have a really good front. I thought our offensive line did an excellent job in pass protection. We even wore them down a little bit at the end of the game with the run game, and started ripping off some runs there at the end that were huge for us. This front four is as good of a front four in the league that you are going to see. That was the thing we really had to do was neutralize them, and I thought our offensive line at the end did a really good job with that.”

Defensive lineman Art Jones was among the players who found it fun to be able to play in that kind of weather.

“It was awesome. It was like Christmas,” he said. “It was like growing up, and me and my brother (Patriots defensive end Chandler Jones) playing football in our backyard. We played in the snow, and in the rain until our noses were snotty. You know, you just don’t care. You’re banged up, but you keep going, just on heart. It was awesome. It was one of the best games. It wasn’t one of the best fundamental games. It was the best game in terms of my emotional roller coaster.”

Neither wideout Marlon Brown, who’s from Memphis, nor cornerback Jimmy Smith, who’s from San Diego, had ever taken the field in snow of that magnitude.

“No, man, this is crazy. It was the first time I saw real, real snow where it was just coming down,” Brown said. “It was inches. It was more than, like, a couple of centimeters of snow. So it was just crazy for me.”

Said Smith: “I played at Colorado and I’ve never played in snow that way. It was an adjustment for both teams, so I guess it didn’t matter that much. The fact that we came out and won it, in the fashion that we did, I’m just grateful. It feels awesome to still be in the playoff race.”

Notes: According to the Elias Sports Bureau, today’s contest marked the first game in NFL history with six lead changes in the fourth quarter. ... The Ravens have won 30 of their last 34 home games with today’s being the 100th home victory in team history. ... Joe Flacco now has 61 regular season wins in his first six seasons, the most in the Super Bowl era by a starting quarterback in his first six campaigns. ... Brown’s six touchdown catches tie him with running back Jamal Lewis for the second-most touchdowns by a Ravens rookie in team history. ... The Ravens are 15-2 in home games where the game-time temperature was below 40 degrees. ... Linebacker Daryl Smith had two passes defensed, giving him 17 on the year - the most in one season by a Ravens linebacker. ... Wideout Brandon Stokley left the game with a head injury.