Ray Lewis scoffs at the latest NFL statistics, which show Baltimore's esteemed defense ranked last in the AFC and 27th overall.
Lewis, now in his 17th season with the Ravens, says, ''At the end of the year is when you pay attention to stats.''
If this season is like the previous nine, the Baltimore will finish in the top 10.
At this point, however, the defense is filled with a variety of newcomers trying to meld with veterans including Lewis, safeties Ed Reed and Bernard Pollard, and tackle Haloti Ngata.
The alignment worked well enough in the opener against Cincinnati, but Baltimore was torched for 486 yards Sunday in a 24-23 loss to the Eagles.
Ngata says the defense ''definitely is a work in progress.''
Baltimore plays New England Sunday.