Ravens beat 49ers 20-17: The Good, bad and ugly
There’s something to be said about bending and not breaking, however the defense bent a little more than you’d like to see. The run defense was horrible in this game. Raheem Mostert had almost 150 yards rushing. There was almost no outside contain to speak of. On Mostert’s touchdown run, George Kittle ran Jaylon Ferguson completely out of the play and there was nobody there to catch the running back. There were times in this game where everything seemed to be going the 49ers’ way. The 49ers had some of the long drives that Baltimore is used to punishing their opponents with.
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The Ravens defense got off to a poor start. They got completely shocked when the 49ers scored a big touchdown pass on a fourth down where they just needed two yards. The Ravens still won the time of possession battle yet it wasn’t as convincingly as usual. The Ravens could have made this game easier on themselves. Lamar Jackson‘s fumble in the third quarter’s opening possession changed everything. If the Ravens scored a touchdown on that drive they would have had a 10 point edge. Jackson’s the MVP and while it was an uncharacteristic mistake, it was a big one.
This was a game that was largely decided on fourth down efficiency. That was a good thing because the Ravens only had three third down conversions. The one fourth down attempt Jackson and company didn’t convert on didn’t cost them, yet they probably shouldn’t have punted. It wasn’t the right call just because they stopped the 49ers on the subsequent possession and then chewed up the clock. If the 49ers converted their late game fourth down, that drive could have killed Baltimore’s chances of celebrating in the rain.