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Ravens...17 Bengals...10

September 08, 2008|From the Associated Press

BALTIMORE -- The rookie head coach made all the right moves, and the first-year quarterback displayed remarkable footwork and poise in his initial NFL start.

Most of all, though, the Baltimore Ravens received a typically solid performance from their defense in defeating the Cincinnati Bengals, 17-10.

The Ravens (1-0) forced two turnovers and limited the Bengals (0-1) to 154 yards to make John Harbaugh a winner in his debut as an NFL coach. Cincinnati's Carson Palmer was 10 for 25 for 99 yards, and his interception ended the Bengals' deepest foray into Baltimore territory -- except for a 65-yard fumble return for a touchdown by Johnathan Joseph.

Palmer was outplayed by Ravens rookie Joe Flacco, forced into the starting role because of a season-ending shoulder injury to Kyle Boller and Troy Smith's infected tonsils. Flacco ran for a 38-yard touchdown and deftly operated within the careful attack deployed by Harbaugh and new offensive coordinator Cam Cameron.

Quoteworthy: "It's just football. It's a lot of fun, though, just like it's always been." -- Joe Flacco, Ravens quarterback

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