Ravens Lose Heartbreaker in Jacksonville
The Baltimore Ravens were handed their first loss since October 16th after falling to the Jacksonville Jaguars by a final of 28-27. The Ravens now move to 7-4, but still remain in first place in the AFC North, as they hold the head-to-head tiebreaker over the Cincinnati Bengals who are also 7-4. The Jaguars are now 4-7, and remain in third place in the AFC South.
The Ravens offense struggled in the red zone on Sunday going just 2-5 in the red area. While the Ravens got a lead early with two Justin Tucker field goals on their first two offensive possessions. The inability to turn those field goals into touchdowns would end up being costly for the Ravens down the stretch.
A failed fourth down attempt at midfield by the Ravens helped the Jaguars get their first points of the game. Trevor Lawrence found his running back JaMycal Hasty wide open for a 28-yard score to give the Jaguars their first lead of the game.
The Ravens and Jaguars would trade field goals on their next offensive possession as the Jaguars took a 10-9 lead into the half.
The Ravens took their opening offensive possession of the second half down to the Jacksonville five-yard line, but were unable to convert. The Ravens would have to settle once again for a short Tucker field goal this time from 24-yards out to give the Ravens a 12-10 lead early in the third.
The Ravens would finally find the end zone for the first time early in the fourth on a one-yard Gus Edwards run. The drive was set up by a Tyus Bowser strip sack of Lawrence that set the Ravens up at the Jacksonville 25 yard line. The Ravens needed seven plays before the Edwards score.
The Jaguars would answer however with their own score going on a 14-play 75 yard drive capped off by a one-yard pass from Lawrence to Jamal Agnew. Lawrence’s second passing touchdown on the day would cut the Ravens lead 19-17 with just under six minutes remaining in the fourth quarter.
The momentum would swing even more in the Jaguars favor on the Ravens very next offensive possession. Looking to drain clock the Ravens handed the ball off to running back Gus Edwards. After breaking through the line Edwards was hit jarring the ball and into the hands of Jaguars cornerback Tyson Campbell. The Ravens defense would stand tall after the Edwards fumble holding the Jaguars to a field goal.
Now with just over four minutes to play the Ravens were down 20-19 desperately needing to score. Lamar Jackson wasted no time in getting the Ravens in position to regain the lead. After a 62-yard bomb to receiver DeSean Jackson on second and long. Jackson needed just four more plays before finding his tight end Josh Oliver for a 12-yard score. The Ravens two-point attempt to tight end Mark Andrews would be successful giving the Ravens a 27-20 lead just before the two minute warning.
But much like it has been in recent years, the Ravens defense needed just one more stop to secure the win, but failed to do so. The game almost ended on a Calais Campbell sack of Lawrence in which he fumbled the ball, however the Jaguars would recover the loose ball keeping their hopes alive. Lawrence used his arm to get the Jaguars in position to score before connecting with Marvin Jones for the 10-yard touchdown. The play would be reviewed to determine if Jones got his foot and ankle down in bounds before landing out of bounds. The ruling of a touchdown would be upheld, and instead of kicking the PAT to likely send the game into overtime. The Jaguars kept their offense on the field looking to end the game. Lawrence found Zay Jones for to convert the two-point attempt and give the Jaguars a 28-27 lead with just 18 seconds remaining.
The Ravens needed a miracle. After a short kickoff the Ravens got the ball at their own 39 yard line with just 10 seconds on the clock. Jackson found Oliver who quickly got out of bounds after a 12-yard gain. With just two second remaining at the Jaguars 49 yard line, the Ravens sent out Justin Tucker to attempt a career long 67-yard field goal. Tucker made a successful 66-yard field goal last season to defeat the Detroit Lions. However, this time Tucker would be short on his attempt as time expired giving the win to the Jaguars and snapping the Ravens four game win streak.
The Ravens over the last two weeks have appeared out of sync offensively and the red zone failures are beginning to mount. The Ravens thus far this season are not the offense that they normally have been with Lamar Jackson under center. Missed throws, dropped passes, and the inability to get plays in quicker has been detrimental to an offense that has the potential to be one of the best in the league. The Ravens will need to change things up on the offensive side of the ball if they hope to be a true contender in the AFC.
The defense has held their own during this recent stretch in which the offense has done them no favors. With two of their safeties out with injury in Marcus Williams and Kyle Hamilton, the Ravens struggled against Lawrence giving up nearly 300 yards passing. But the Ravens continued to be one of the most dominate rushing defenses in the league as the only surrendered 38 yards on the ground. The most glaring issue for the Ravens has been cornerback Marcus Peters. Peters was in coverage on all three of the Jaguars touchdowns and has been beat in coverage, often leading to wide open receivers, multiple times this season. The Ravens lack depth at the cornerback position behind Peters and his poor play, if continued, could hurt the Ravens come playoff time.
The Ravens will look to right the ship next Sunday as they return home to battle the Denver Broncos.
The Ravens became just the fourth team in NFL history to lead by double digits in a teams first 11 games.
Justin Tucker made his 54th career field goal of 50 yards or longer, trails only Matt Prater and Sebastion Janikowski for most all time.
Justin Tucker’s 67-yard field goal attempt is tied for the 8th longest attempt in NFL history.
Tight end Josh Oliver had a career high 76 yards receiving to lead all Ravens receivers.
Calais Campbell recorded his 99th career sack on Sunday.