After the Ravens’ 34-20 loss against the Kansas City Chiefs Sept. 28, which ended their 14-game regular-season winning streak, Ravens left guard Bradley Bozeman had a common refrain.
“We shot ourselves in the foot,” Bozeman said multiple times on Glenn Clark Radio Sept. 29.
Bozeman, 25, played at Alabama before he was drafted by the Ravens in the sixth round of the 2018 NFL Draft. He played in 14 games as a rookie and was named the starting left guard in his second season with the Ravens. Bozeman played every offensive snap last season.
Prior to “Monday Night Football” against the Chiefs, the Ravens had not lost a regular-season game since Sept. 29, 2019 against the Cleveland Browns. They had led at halftime in the previous 11 games and had not trailed a team during the second half in 13 games.
In 2018, the Ravens lost a close game to the Chiefs, 27-24. Last season, the Ravens fell to the Chiefs in another close game, 33-28. The defending Super Bowl champions are led by 2018 NFL MVP Patrick Mahomes.
“It’s definitely frustrating. They’re a really good football team. They have been since I’ve been in the league. We’ve played them three years in a row. We just haven’t been very successful against them,” Bozeman said. “We always put up a good fight, but we just have to come together. We think we’re going to see them again into this year. We’ll be ready.”
“It’s a lot of situational football that we really weren’t good at [Sept. 28],” Bozeman added. “… We just have to play better as a team. That’s what football’s all about. It’s about coming together as a team.”
The Chiefs scored touchdowns on four of their first five drives, leading to a 27-10 halftime score. The Ravens closed the gap to 27-20 in the fourth quarter, but the Chiefs responded with a touchdown to clinch the victory.
“We didn’t really play our best football [Sept. 28]. We made a lot of mistakes. We shot ourselves in the foot. We did a lot of things that aren’t typical to us,” Bozeman said. “We just have to go into this week, fix them. … We’re only going to get better from here. It was a great wake-up call for us. Right now they’re the best team in the league, and we have to strive to take their spot.”
The Ravens posted 228 yards of offense compared to 517 for the Chiefs, and Baltimore only held the ball for 26:04.
“Too many penalties, too many missed opportunities. It lights a little spark under you. That feeling of losing sucks, especially when you have the high expectation of winning,” Bozeman said. “I hate losing, Like, I absolutely despise losing. … I have to be better myself. It happens.”
Bozeman’s wife, Nikki, was able to attend her first game of the season Sept. 28. The Ravens allowed 250 family members of players, coaches and front office personnel into M&T Bank Stadium.
“It was different. Obviously we were really spread out, which was good. You could hear everything — even like the Chiefs sideline, you could hear them yelling at you, so that was fun,” Nikki said of the stadium atmosphere. “It was different, but it was good. At least we were there.”
The Bradley and Nikki Bozeman Foundation promotes charitable, philanthropic and grassroots community activities. The foundation’s focus has largely on eliminating bullying in schools, but it has added some new objectives.
“Every other Tuesday, we do a food distribution at Mount Pleasant Church and Ministries in Baltimore,” Nikki said, “We have 300 boxes for the week for families. So we have 300 of those, as well as 300 family-style prepared meals for the families that come through so they can eat a hot meal for dinner.”
The Bozemans took part in a drive-through food distribution event Sept. 29, interacting with families virtually. Donations can be made here.
“We’re saying $40 every other week would help feed a family,” Nikki said. “So $80 a month would feed that family for the month.”
For more from Bozeman, listen to the full interview here:
Photo Credit: Kenya Allen/PressBox