Ravens crush Bengals: 3 things that went right
2. The defense didn’t break (and scored themselves)
Uncharacteristically the Ravens didn’t win the time of possession battle in the first half of the game. The Bengals held the ball for almost 15 minutes in the first half and had a few lengthy drives. The Ravens went into the halftime intermission with a 28-10 score. The Bengals had three 10 play drives in the first half. The first one ended in a field goal and a good stop for the defense. The way Jackson and company were playing, field goals weren’t going to beat the Ravens. The second drive ended with a defensive touchdown for the Ravens. The Bengals finally got it in the end zone on their third chance.
The Bengals went for it on fourth down on the opening possession of the first half. The Ravens had given up a few first downs and Don Martindale couldn’t have been pleased with his defense. On the fourth down they got pressure on Finley, and the coverage was tight. Chuck Clark forced Giovanni Bernard to fumble however the Bengals would have been short of the line to gain.
The defense got moved around, but won the battle. The next Bengals possession ended with another turnover on downs. The defense stood up when it had to.
What does a defense do after two fourth down stops and a pick six in the first half? Pat Ricard, the fullback/defensive tackle extraordinaire, got to Ryan Finley on a pass rush and forced a fumble. Tyus Bowser returned the fumble for a touchdown. 49-10 was the glorious score for Baltimore.
While the defensive effort wasn’t as dominant as you would have liked to seen at times, it was stiff when it had to be throughout this entire game. The Ravens were in charge of this game and the Bengals chunks of time with the football never threatened to change that.