The Baltimore Ravens came into yesterday's game against the Washington Redskins with a sour taste in their mouth after losing at home last week to the Pittsburgh Steelers on a walk off field goal, well history really does repeat itself as Kai Forbath kicked a 34 yard walk off field goal in overtime to lift Washington past Baltimore 31-28.
Baltimore won the coin toss in overtime, but went three and out on their possession and was forced to punt and that's when the candle started to go out as Richard Crawford returned the punt 64 yards deep into Ravens territory to set up the game winning field goal. The fact that the game was even in overtime is sickening to Ravens fans. Baltimore had an eight point lead with 4:47 left in the game after a Ray Rice 7 yard touchdown run, and had Washington backed up to their own 15 yard line. The Redskins proceeded to drive 85 yards in 13 plays, capped off by a 11 yard touchdown pass by back up quarterback Kirk Cousins, who also would run in the game tying two point conversion. Cousins was in the game due to starting quarterback Robert Griffin III being injured early in the game tying drive.
The football game had all of the makings of a shootout in the first half as the Ravens led 21-14 at half time and both offenses seemed unstoppable. Baltimore had a great first half on the road, but returned to form in the second half and overtime. Joe Flacco completed 10 of 13 pass attempts for 127 yards and three touchdowns in the first half, while Ray Rice ran for 71 yards on seven carries and Anquan Boldin reeled two grabs for 50 yards and two touchdowns. Then the Ravens road offense showed up as Flacco accrued just 55 passing yards in the second half and overtime and only scored seven second half points after scoring 21 in the first half.
Baltimore's defense struggled with the loads of injuries they have on that side of the football as they allowed 420 total yards, including 246 passing yards and a touchdown from RG3 and 122 rushing yards and a touchdown to rookie Alfred Morris. No offense to these guys, but Baltimore would not want Josh Bynes, Chris Johnson and Albert McClellan playing as much as they did, but this is the NFL and injuries are a part of the game.
Flacco finished the game with 182 passing yards with three first half touchdowns, a lost fumble, and an interception. Rice had a nice game rushing for 121 yards with a touchdown and Boldin reeled in three grabs for 78 yards and two touchdowns.
The most frustrating part for Ravens fans is that all of the sudden Baltimore looks like a team that cannot finish games, and it is not just the players, the coaches are struggling as well. First, Baltimore got the ball back with :29 seconds left in the game with one timeout and coach John Harbaugh decided to kneel on it, that is frustrating for fans, especially with the range that Justin Tucker has. Also, timeouts seem to not be as important to Harbaugh as they are to fans because yesterday he had Baltimore line up for a fake punt in the fourth quarter and then wasted a timeout when Washington did not flinch.
Baltimore is now 9-4, but still hold a two game lead in the AFC North because both the Steelers and Bengals lost yesterday as well, which means for the second straight week the Ravens let a golden opportunity to clinch a playoffs spot slip through their grasp. The Ravens will now need to refocus and turn their attention to Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos as they come into M&T Bank Stadium this Sunday for a crucial game in the AFC playoff picture.
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