Surprise Pitch Works For Reed

Dawan Landry said he had no idea Ed Reed was going to pitch him the football.

Posted by Mike Duffy on Sunday, November 21st, 2010 at 8:50 pm | Categories: 2010 Season, Mike Duffy, Week 11 at Panthers

In a game where precision is everything, perhaps the most-exciting play of the Ravens’ 37-13 win over the Carolina Panthers was simply schoolyard football.

When Ed Reed intercepted quarterback Brian St. Pierre in the fourth quarter, he rambled through a sea of Panthers tacklers for 19 yards, and then unexpectedly pitched the ball to fellow safety Dawan Landry, who took it 23 yards to paydirt.

The thing is, Landry had no idea the lateral was coming.

“That was fun. I felt like we were in high school again,” said Landry.  “When he pitched it, I knew I was going to score.  I initially was trying to get a block for him but he just pitched it to me because he saw I had a better angle.

“It worked out.”

The touchdown put the Ravens ahead 30-13 with just under five minutes remaining in regulation and took the air out of a Carolina team that still had a fighting chance.  Coupled with Ray Lewis’ pick-six on the Panthers’ next offensive snap, the outcome was set in a matter of seconds.

But Reed also took a risk with the pitch, as Landry estimated that he was around 10-15 yards behind the All-Pro safety.

“That might be a history long [lateral] for the NFL, outside of the [Music City] Miracle in Tennessee,” Reed said after the game, referring to a kickoff return by the Titans in the 1999 playoffs where Tennessee tight end Frank Wycheck threw the ball across the field.  “It’s something we do at practice…We were on the same page, and we expect those things from each other.

Reed and Landry’s combo touchdown caused a few of their teammates’ jaws to drop.

“When I saw him pitch it to Dawan, I was like, ‘Oh my God!’ like I was watching an NBA basketball game or something,” cornerback Chris Carr joked.  “You love to see that.  I don’t care if we fumble it and get the ball back, at least we tried it.”

But, was Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh nervous when he saw Reed give away possession?

“You know what? In that situation, I really wasn’t, because I could tell he had Dawan in position,” said Harbaugh. “Dawan was exactly four yards deep, the way that we coach it, maybe a little bit more, and the wall was set up.

“I wanted to score right there.”

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