Huntley Saves the Day as the Ravens Down the Broncos
The Baltimore Ravens were in a dog fight once again this Sunday as they battled the Denver Broncos. The Broncos have one of the worst offenses in the NFL and Sunday showed why as the Russell Wilson led offense failed to reach the end zone. However, over the last three weeks the Ravens have looked just as bad offensively.
The Broncos got the scoring started on their opening drive that ended on a Brandon McManus 52-yard field goal.
The Ravens and Broncos would trade punts for the remainder of the first quarter. The biggest news in the first however was the injury to quarterback Lamar Jackson. After taking a sack on second down at the end of the quarter, Jackson went to the sideline as backup Tyler Huntley went in for the third down to start the second quarter. Jackson, with a slight limp, would head back to the locker room, but would not return.
After a Denver punt on their first possession of the second quarter, Huntley got his first full drive of the season. Huntley and the offense would go on a 10 play 62 yard drive finished off by a Justin Tucker 26-yard field goal. The Broncos would tack another field goal before the end of the half to take a 6-3 lead over the Ravens into halftime.
Another poor half for the Ravens would get no better in the third. On the Ravens second possession of the second half, Huntley made his first mistake. Rolling out to his right looking for tight end Mark Andrews, Huntley threw the ball short right into the chest of Broncos safety Justin Simmons. The Broncos would take over at the Ravens 40 yard line but could only muster a field goal to extend the Broncos lead 9-3.
The Ravens would take over looking to finally get something going on offense to regain control. Huntley and the offense would drive all the way down to the Broncos 32 yard line before another mistake would halt the drive. A trick play that saw receiver James Proche throwing the ball to running back Kenyan Drake backfired as Proche threw into tight coverage with multiple Broncos defenders in the area. Proche’s ill-advised throw into the end zone would be picked off by Justin Simmons for his second interception of the day.
The Broncos would fail to do anything after the turnover punting the ball back to the Ravens. With just over five minutes remaining the Ravens took over from their own nine yard line desperately needing a touchdown to avoid the upset. Huntley put together his best drive of his career that included a nice touch pass to running back Kenyan Drake to get the Ravens down to the Broncos two yard line. After a Broncos timeout and just 31 seconds remaining the Ravens finally found the end zone. Huntley took the snap and rushed up the middle for the two-yard score to give the Ravens their first lead of the game, 10-9.
With just two timeouts and 23 seconds of the clock the Broncos needed to make quick work to get into field goal range. A 16-yard pass to Jerry Jeudy followed by a 17-yard scramble by Russell Wilson got the Broncos down to the Ravens 49 yard line. With just nine seconds remaining and no timeouts Wilson scrambled for four yards and out of bounds leaving just two second on the clock. Enough time to try a McManus 63-yard field goal. McManus lined up for the kick striking it accurately, however the kick would fall several yard short in the Baltimore cold giving the Ravens a close 10-9 win.
The Ravens remain in first place in the AFC North at 8-4, but right now certainly don’t feel like a legit contender in the AFC. The defense has played outstanding the last several weeks and largely has been the reason the Ravens have been in contention to win the last few weeks. While not much more can be done by the defense they may need to find a way, with Lamar Jackson’s availability next week in question. Huntley is a serviceable backup that played in the teams last five games in 2021 after Jackson went down with an ankle injury. The Ravens will seemingly need to keep their heads above water with Huntley under center until Jackson returns, hopefully sometime soon.
The Ravens now head north to take the Pittsburgh Steelers next Sunday for the first time this season.
Lamar Jackson (knee) Week-to-Week
Patrick Queen (thigh) Day-to-Day
Patrick Mekari (toe) Day-to-Day
The Ravens have not scored a touchdown in the first three quarters in three straight weeks.
The Ravens extend their streak of leading to 12 straight games.
Lamar Jackson threw for just 11 yards, his lowest passing total of his career in a game in which he started.
Tyler Huntley had his sixth career 100+ yard game.
Roquan Smith led all Ravens with 11 tackles.