Ravens Stamp Themselves as Contenders With 37-20 Over Patriots

Vinny & Haynie
November 04, 2019 - 9:28 am

© Douglas DeFelice - USA Today Sports

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By Joe Schiller

Remember when teams had the Baltimore Ravens figured out after the wild card loss to the Los Angeles Chargers? 

As it turns out, there are two sides to the story. 

Fast forward eight games later and the narrative has completely shifted. Under the lights in primetime, Lamar Jackson and the Ravens' offense ran rampant over the NFL's top-ranked defense. Baltimore jumped out to a 17-0 lead, sustained blows, and handled the defending Super Bowl champs 37-20. 

The MVP chants reigned down from the M&T Bank Stadium crowd. Not for Tom Brady, but for the second-year quarterback who continues to be a certified cheat code on the field. 

The Ravens couldn't have asked for a better start. Touchdown runs from Jackson and Gus Edwards, along with a 39-yard field goal from Justin Tucker gave Baltimore a commanding first-quarter lead. The game had the feeling of a blowout, but that's rarely ever the case going up against Brady and Bill Belichick. 

Cyrus Jones muffed a punt and Mark Ingram coughed up a fumble in the second quarter to give the Patriots life. They responded, scoring 13 unanswered points. Self-inflicted wounds hurt the Ravens in the first two quarters while they had the opportunity to take a commanding lead, but walked into the halftime locker room up just four points. 

After watching Nick Chubb and the Cleveland Browns have success in the run game against the Patriots, the Ravens followed a similar blueprint. They rushed for 210 yards, averaging 5.1 yards per carry. Mark Ingram led the ground attack with 115 rushing yards while Jackson added 61 yards on 16 carries (two were kneel-downs at the end of the game). 

The Patriots seemingly had no answer for the Ravens' ground game. But coming out of the half, Tom Brady found his rhythm in the passing game and began to pick apart the Ravens' defense. However, as the Ravens took each hit, they answered. 

Patrick Onwuasor forced the fumble on Julian Edelman with a punchout a Marlon Humphrey ran 70 yards in stride for the touchdown. The momentum swung back into the Ravens' favor and they never looked back. 

The Ravens really only ran two drives in the second half. That may seem concerning on the surface, until you realize the execution. The Ravens sustained two 14-play drives of 8:09 and 9:35, both ending in touchdowns. They controlled time of possession 37:01 to 22:59 and kept the ball out of Tom Brady's hands for most of the second half. 

It was only fitting after a physical game in the trenches, tight end Nick Boyle scored his first career touchdown, the game-sealer, as his teammates swarmed him in the endzone. 

The Ravens improve to 6-2 on the season and have won four straight games. They've thrust themselves into the conversation as the NFL's top team, and there's no denying that. 

Baltimore will travel to Cincinnati for a divisional matchup next Sunday against rookie quarterback Ryan Finley. They'll look to win their fifth straight before facing a gauntlet of the Los Angeles Rams, Houston Texans, and San Francisco 49ers.