Ravens doing a good job of limiting the laundry

While the AP Defensive Player of the Year award won’t be announced until the week leading up to the Super Bowl, Terrell Suggs is already racking up some end of the year honors.

Yesterday, Suggs was named Pro Football Weekly’s Defensive Player of the Year, and today, he was recognized as the NFL 101 AFC Defensive Player of the Year, an award voted on by 101 national media members.

News of the latter honor apparently was slow to reach Suggs, who recently Tweeted: “Do yous guys know something I don’t???? Why am I being congratulated????”

Someone alert Mr. Suggs that he’ll need to make some space on his mantle.

Remember the days when the Ravens would often let their emotions get the best of them in key games?

They got whistled for personal fouls, were flagged for late hits, and once even - yes, we all remember - threw a official’s flag into the stands.

The current Ravens sure look like a different team in that regard.

Throughout the course of the regular season, the Ravens were called for just 92 penalties (ninth-fewest in the league) for only 742 yards (fourth-fewest in the league).

How impressive are those numbers? The Ravens hadn’t recorded penalty or yardage totals that low since all the way back in 2001.

To me, that indicates two things: the players have improved their technique, resulting in fewer pre-snap and holding penalties, and that guys have been able to control their emotions instead of boiling over or making silly mental errors.

Remarkably, Sunday’s win over the Texans marked the first time in franchise history that the Ravens were not whistled for a single penalty. They went the entire 60 minutes without having any yellow laundry thrown in their direction, something which had to make head coach John Harbaugh particularly proud.

“It’s critically important,” Harbaugh said. “To me, it’s emotional smarts; it’s playing smart football. It’s understanding when to be aggressive and when not to be. And, basically, it’s between the whistles, and the rest of it doesn’t matter.”

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