Justin Houston continues his sack season


Justin Houston is at the top of his game and opposing quarterbacks are paying the price.

Becoming the first player in Ravens history with three straight multiple sacks, Houston shined on Monday Night Football with 2.5 sacks and an interception in Baltimore’s 27-13 win over the Saints. It continued a great season for Houston who lead the Ravens with 8.5 sacks in just six games, despite missing three games due to a groin injury.

At 33, Houston doesn’t seem to be getting old. The veteran outside linebacker applies all the technique and knowledge he’s accumulated over a stellar 12-year career to torment quarterbacks, rewarding the Ravens for re-signing him this offseason.

“I was actually thinking about retiring,” Houston said. “My wife and I took a vacation and I turned off my phone. I just prayed and prayed, and I literally heard God say, ‘Give me everything, and I’ll give you your desires. ‘ I said to my wife, ‘Look, I’m going to be everything in this season.'”

Houston now has 110.5 career sacks, but it was one of their best games. He was the catalyst for the one generated by quarterback Andy Dalton, firing him four times as Houston teammates followed his lead. Since joining the Ravens last season, Houston has mentored many young players, and his teammates have loved seeing a respected teammate flourish.

“It’s inspiring to be in the room with a guy like that,” outside linebacker Odafe Oweh said. “It was impressive to see. He told me this summer, when he was working in Georgia, that he really tuned in, when it came to this year and what he really wanted for himself- same. You obviously see it. I don’t know what it is, but I’m trying to get everything he’s got.”

The tone was set in the first quarter, when Houston’s first sack on a third play ended a New Orleans practice. Patrick Queen launched a blitz on the play that collapsed the pocket and provided a clear path for Houston to tackle Dalton.


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