Ravens rush attack no match for Bengals, 24-21 victory in Baltimore
Final Score: Ravens 24 Bengals 21
What went right:
John Harbaugh and Marty Mornhinweg clearly designed a gameplan to play to rookie quarterback Lamar Jackson’s strengths. It by allowed him to scramble, and also deliver short quick passes in order to move the chains. Jackson also took care of the football outside of the one interception during the third quarter. The Ravens offensive line protected Jackson overall and also provided plenty of run lanes to finish out the day with 265 total yards rushing. Defensively, the Ravens were able to generate pass rush up the middle early and kept the Bengals scoreless until the second quarter. The Ravens entered halftime leading 13-7.
Lamar Jackson played well, looked good throwing the short pass (even sidearm) and escaping pressure. There were quite a few plays where a sack was about to be a sure thing, only to see Jackson pop out and run for extra yardage. The Ravens run blocking was on display opening up holes for Gus Edwards to gain 115 yards on 17 carries and a touchdown for the day, while Lamar Jackson finished with 117 yards on 27 carries.
The defense came up big when it mattered most in the fourth quarter on a Bengals 4th & 3, when Marlon Humphrey broke up a sideline pass to Bengals receiver C. Core that secured the Ravens victory with 1:46 left in the game.
What went wrong:
The Ravens had a few “one step forward, two steps back” type plays during the game. The first came during the first quarter, in the redzone, 1st & goal when Patrick Ricard was called for pass interference forcing the Ravens to settle for a 28 yard field goal when the touchdown was imminent. Later, on the first drive after halftime, Jackson threw his first interception, setting up the Bengals in the red zone and resulting in the short field touchdown allowing them to go up 14-13. Then with 2:58 remaining in the fourth quarter, the offense was called for an illegal formation on 4th & 1 while trying to keep a drive going and possession through the end of the quarter. The Ravens were forced to punt and gave the ball back to the Bengals with the game coming down to the final few minutes.
The Ravens defense let the Bengals back into the game during the second half by allowing Cincinnati to get rolling in the pass game and pickup numerous chunk plays while keeping the chains moving. The defense was unable to get off the field on third down and was having a tough time containing receiver Tyler Boyd at times. The Bengals were able to put up 14 points in the third quarter, allowing them to hold onto a lead until the Ravens tied it up at 21 on an 11 yard touchdown run by Gus Edwards and a 2 point conversion at the end of the third quarter.
Left Tackle Ronnie Stanley appears to have an ankle injury. He had rotated with James Elumenour throughout the game and then went out in the fourth quarter. No other updates were available at the time of this article.
The Ravens will face the Oakland Raiders at home. The struggling Raiders are a desperate team and will come to Baltimore with a very depleted receiver corps. The Ravens have a great opportunity to grab back-to-back wins before they head south to face the Atlanta Falcons.
Notable: John Harbaugh is now 9-2 in games after the bye week and the victory ended a three game losing streak for the Ravens. Lamar Jackson becomes the first quarterback since Colin Kaepernick (2016, 113 yards) to rush for more than 100 yards in a single game.
The Ravens offense will obviously take a very different look under Lamar Jackson, if he develops quickly, he has a great fantasy opportunity to put up some big games down the stretch…Willie Snead has shown me that he will garner targets from whoever is the quarterback by getting open on broken plays and down the middle of the field…I’m not giving up on John Brown yet, but give him some time because Lamar will definitely be throwing the deep ball at some point, just not this week or maybe even next week, but be patient…Michael Crabtree finished the day with one catch for seven yards, no comment needed…The offense will be strictly run orientated until Lamar is comfortable, meaning Alex Collins and Gus Edwards should be considered fantasy flex plays in deep leagues or RB 2’s if absolutely needed…Justin Tucker is your locked and loaded lineup kicker…Ty Montgomery made some brief appearances but I am not putting too much stock into him just yet…
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