Baltimore Ravens fall to Patriots: Good, bad and lots of ugly

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Nov 15, 2020; Foxborough, Massachusetts, USA; Baltimore Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson (8) passes the ball during the first half against the New England Patriots at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Paul Rutherford-USA TODAY Sports

It was a rough Sunday night. Here’s the good section. Don’t worry the ugly is coming:

The Baltimore Ravens started the game on offense. The Ravens were able to enjoy the return of Mark Ingram, who had a reception for a first down on the first play. It looked like Jackson wanted to fire a shot down the field, but he had the time and found the open back out in the flat.

The drive didn’t go anywhere though, it was notably better than a three and out. It was a sign that the lights were on at the start of the game.

On the next drive for the offense, things started to get on a roll. The Ravens moved the chains with a Lamar Jackson keeper, then a pass over the middle to Mark Andrews. Right after that, he hit Willie Snead over the middle of the field, cooking in Jackson’s comfort zone. Spreading the ball around was the strength of this scoring drive. Devin Duvernay even got a swing pass built off a subtle misdirect.

Jackson took off a few times with the football and the Ravens were knocking on the door. On a third-down with two yards to go, Gus Edwards picked up the first down. A little jet-sweep play got Willie Snead the first touchdown of the game.

The lights were on at the start but on the second drive, things came together. With the offense, we’re going to skip ahead to late in the third quarter. That’s because there was some really frustrating football for a while after Justin Tucker‘s field goal.

The Ravens showed some resilience on Sunday Night Football. They were down 23-10 and went on a long and gritty drive where they needed some fourth-down magic to keep it going. The offense scored a touchdown when Jackson hit Snead in the end zone. The most fitting metaphor here is that the Ravens weathered the storm, and that’s both literally and figuratively true. At this point in the game, Jackson was 20-26 passing for 224 yards a touchdown, and a pick. There was a lot to be upset about in this game, Jackson’s play wasn’t on the list of possible complaints.

The start of the fourth quarter was the turning point in this battle of rain, sweat, and tears. It just didn’t turn enough. The defensive strategy shifted. Don Martindale realized that he had to get aggressive to win. Baltimore forced a quick three and out, got good field position, and changed the momentum on a dime. The offense was forced to punt yet that was okay. The punt pinned the Patriots deep inside their own territory and I mean deep. Momentum somehow was with the purple and black.

The Ravens got the stop they desperately needed. With just over seven minutes remaining in the game, Jackson got his opportunity to finish the comeback. This game really was intense the whole way through and it made fans feel every emotion that could be felt. In the end, the Ravens got two cracks at it and didn’t complete the comeback. There’s a lot of frustration to get through here.

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