The Baltimore Ravens are healthy and rested, qualities they hope will serve them better in the playoffs than the momentum they would have derived from winning the regular-season finale.
Baltimore's 23-17 loss to Cincinnati on Sunday had the feel of a preseason contest, which is appropriate because the Ravens (10-6) consider themselves to be starting anew this Sunday against Chuck Pagano's Indianapolis Colts (11-5).
Coach John Harbaugh said Monday, "It's a whole new season. It all starts fresh. It's the playoffs. We're all 0-0 at this point."
Baltimore sputtered to the finish by losing four of its last five games. The Ravens won at least one playoff game in each of the previous four seasons, but on each occasion they were coming off a victory in the regular-season finale.
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