Baltimore Ravens top Bengals at home: Three game balls

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BALTIMORE, MD – OCTOBER 13: Lamar Jackson #8 of the Baltimore Ravens looks to pass against Cincinnati Bengals during the first half at M&T Bank Stadium on October 13, 2019 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Dan Kubus/Getty Images)

Don’t let the score fool you. The Baltimore Ravens had some great performances

In a game that was not nearly as even as the final score might lead you to believe, the Baltimore Ravens handled their business at home against the Cincinnati Bengals with a 23-17 win on Sunday, Oct. 13.

The Ravens expertly played keep-away with the ball via a sound and explosive running attack, were fairly sound with their tackling throughout the contest and generally looked like the better team for the vast majority of the game. To borrow from the coach’s official (It’s not official — I just made this up) playbook, it was a good team win. However, there were some individuals who stood out from the crowd on Sunday, and we are here today to present some team balls.

Lamar Jackson

Electric. Exhilarating. Exciting. Elevating. Ummm… eggs? Sorry, I ran out of “E” words that could be used to describe Jackson’s performance against the Bengals.

Do you remember how amazing it was to watch Jackson throw five touchdowns in limited snaps against the hapless Miami Dolphins? This was similar, but it was more of a multi-dimensional assault he launched against the Bengals on Sunday.

Jackson was 21-33 for 236 yards on the day, spreading out the ball to nine different receivers on a day he was without his most dangerous weapon, Marquise “Hollywood” Brown. That’s a nice, clean day with his arm, right? You win football games when your quarterback plays like that.

Related Story: Ravens beat Bengals: The good, bad and the ugly

Well, that’s only a half-day’s work for this Ravens quarterback. Jackson carried the ball 19 times on Sunday, and most of those carries were of the designed variety. He collected 152 yards on those 19 carries, for an average of eight yards per tote, and scored on a 21-yard-reach-for-the-pylon touchdown to negate the Bengals game-opening kickoff score. He also added a 16-yard run on third-and-14 in the fourth quarter, and registered a winding, cut-across-the-field 36-yard scamper in the first quarter.

This is what Bengals coach Zach Taylor said after the game per ESPN. 

“The most frustrating thing for the defense is, you got the play covered — and he just finds (space)…He’s an elite athlete. We’ve played a couple good athletes, (but) he’s one of the rarest I’ve ever seen in person. Just one little crease and he’s got 30 yards on you.”

It was a terrific performance by a young quarterback who seemingly put his team on his back from the start of this game to help push the Ravens record to 4-2 on the season, and extend their lead in the AFC North to two games entering the team’s toughest stretch in their schedule.

Lamar Jackson, come get your game ball. You earned it.

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