Ryan L. Fox
Once upon a Sunday night dreary, the Baltimore Ravens hosted the New England Patriots, whose offense looked weak and weary. A receiver corp now depleted and an offensive line that could use a good rest. Still they boasted the number one defense in the NFL, the "best of the best" that their fans and media would tell you. The two teams battled out on Sunday night, with the Ravens being dubbed as the first true test.
For 60 minutes of gruel and grind, only one team truly was able to bream and shine. And while that team was able to shine, the defense that many called for as the all-time great was exposed for the frauds as they were slogged and beaten. By a man who stood tall and proud like a hero, even after the clock ran 00:00. And though the Ravens played a game that was considered a bore, they made the Patriots' chance of a perfect season...nevermore.
The Patriots ended up winning the coin toss by elected to defer to the 2nd half, giving the Ravens the ball to start the game.
After the opening kickoff went into the endzone for a touchback, the Ravens started their first possession of the game on their own 25. QB Lamar Jackson lead the Ravens offense down the field as he led a Ravens rushing attack that gashed the Patriots defense. This also included a quick little catch-and-run by Jackson to WR Marquise Brown for 26-yards down into New England territory. But once the offense got past the New England 10, the Patriots defense began to hold their ground.
After getting stopped on 3rd and 2 from the New England, the Ravens looked to settle for a 29-yard field goal by K Justin Tucker. Unfortunately for the Patriots, DE Shilique Calhoun jumped offside to draw a neutral zone infraction penalty, giving the Ravens a first down at the New England 3. It didn’t take long for the Ravens to cash in as on the next play, Jackson faked a handoff before rolling left into the endzone untouched for the score. Tucker booted the PAT through as the score was 7-0 with 8:13 left in the 1st quarter.
After the ensuing kickoff went into the back of the endzone for a touchback, the Patriots got the ball on their own 25 for their first possession of the game. However, after 3 straight incompletions by QB Tom Brady, the Patriots were forced to punt the ball.
The Ravens got the ball back on their own 25 as they opened the drive with a 14-yard run RB Mark Ingram to the Baltimore 39. Three plays later, the Ravens were at midfield on 1st and 10. Jackson faked the handoff (and the NFL skycam) before running down the field 18-yards to the New England 32. The Ravens got as far as the New England 20, but Jackson ended up getting sacked on 2nd and 9 back at the New England 21. An incompletion on 3rd down forced the Ravens to settle for the field goal. Tucker booted the 39-yard field goal through the uprights as the Ravens had a 10-0 lead with a little under 2 and a half minutes left in the game.
After the forcing the Patriots to punt, the Ravens got the ball back at their own 23. After a 7-yard pass from Jackson to TE Nick Boyle to the Baltimore 30, the Ravens were faced with 2nd and short. However, Patriots DT Adam Butler drew a neutral zone infraction to give the Ravens a 1st down as the 1st quarter came to a close.
When the 2nd quarter opened up, Ingram took the hand off and burst through the offensive line. Ingram seemingly looked like he was going to outrun the New England defense but ended up getting tackled at the New England 12 for a 53-yard run. On the next play, RB Gus Edwards took the handoff over the left side for 12 yards and the score. Tucker booted the PAT through as the Ravens had a 17-0 lead with 14 minutes left in the half.
The Patriots got the ball back as they began their next drive at their own 31. However, the Ravens defense forced them into another 3 and out as things were starting to slip away. They were forced to punt as Ravens PR/CB Cyrus Jones waited for the ball at his own 19. Instead, he ended up muffing the punt as CB/ST Justin Bethel ended up recovering the ball at the Baltimore 20.
With a new set of downs, Brady went to work as he hooked up with RB James White for a 16-yard screen pass down to the Baltimore 4. After getting stopped on 1st and 2nd down, the Patriots were faced with 3rd and goal on the Baltimore 4. Brady then looked left before finding WR Mohammed Sanu for the short touchdown pass. New acquired K Nick Folk booted the PAT through as the Patriots got on the scoreboard 17-7 with a little over 12 minutes left in the half.
After forcing the Ravens to punt, the Patriots got the ball back on their own 21. Brady lead the offense down the field as they got up to the Baltimore 33. But on 2nd and 5, Brady was flagged for an intentional grounding penalty that made it 3rd and 15 from the Baltimore 43. A holding penalty on LT Marshall Newhouse then pushed the Patriots back to their own 47 to make it 3rd and 25.
A quick dump off pass to RB Rex Burkhead was able to get some of those yards back down. But at the end of the play, it looked like Burkhead was stripped off the ball by a Baltimore defender at the Baltimore 37. But on replay, it showed that Burkhead was down by contact. The Patriots were faced with 4th and 9 from the Baltimore 37 as instead of settling for a 50+ yard field goal attempt by Folk, they elected to punt.
The Ravens got the ball back on their own 6 as they attempted to make a statement drive to prevent the Patriots from getting back into the game. But on 2nd and 5 at their own 11, Ingram had the 1st down at the 16 but LB Kyle Van Noy stripped the ball away from him. DT Lawrence Guy pounced on the ball at the Baltimore 19, giving the Patriots perfect field position.
Brady again began to carve up the Ravens defense as it took 2 plays to get down to the Baltimore 7. However, a holding call on the Patriots back them up to the Baltimore 17. They were able to get as far Baltimore 4 before then being forced to settle for a field goal. Folk booted the 22-yarder through the uprights to make it 17-10 with a little over 3 and a half minutes left to play in the half.
After forcing another Ravens punt, the Patriots got the ball back with under 2 minutes left in the half. After a quick 4-yard run by White, the Patriots were faced with 2nd and 9 from their own 19. Brady then found TE Benjamin Watson at the New England 25 for a 6-yard pass. However, on the play, Ravens CB Marlon Humphrey was flagged for a questionable unnecessary roughness call, giving the Patriots a 1st down at their own 15. On the ensuing play, Brady found WR Julian Edelman for a 25-yard pass to the Baltimore 30 and then another deep pass to White to the Baltimore 5.
After getting pushed back to the Baltimore 6 and then an incomplete pass, the Patriots were faced with 3rd and goal at the Baltimore 6. White took the handoff as he bounced off the right side and was downed at the Baltimore 1. There was some question whether or not he was able to extend the ball over the goalline but upon further review, he showed he was short of the goalline. Faced with a 4th and goal at the Baltimore 1 with 10 seconds left in the game, Belichick elected to kick the field goal. Folk booted a 19-yard field goal through the uprights as the score was 17-13 with less than a few seconds left in the half.
After the ensuing kickoff, Jackson simply kneeled the ball down to end the half as both teams went into their respective locker room.
When the 2nd half began, the Patriots started off with the ball.
They began their first possession of the 2nd half on their own 25. After an incompletion to start the drive, Brady found Edelman for a quick 3-yard pass to the New England 28. The Patriots then went into their No Huddle offense as they were able to move the ball freely against the Baltimore Ravens. The Patriots then got all the way down to the Baltimore 30 as they tried another play in No Huddle. Brady found Edelman in the flat for what would be a short game. However Ravens LB Patrick Onwuasor was able to knock the ball out from Edelman as Humphrey scooped the ball up and returned it 70 yards for the score. Tucker booted the PAT through as the Ravens lead extended to 24-13 with a little under 12 and a half minutes left.
The Patriots got ensuing kickoff back on their own 25 as Brady and the offense went back out on the field. Like the previous drive, the Patriots ended up going No Huddle yet again to wear down the Ravens defense. They ended up marching down the field on the Ravens before capping the drive off with a 1-yard touchdown run by White. Folk booted the PAT through as the score was now 24-20 with 8:03 left in the 3rd quarter.
Ravens WR/KR Chris Moore caught the ensuing kickoff at his own 5 before returning it to the Baltimore 19. The Ravens then began to drive the ball against the Patriots, including getting an 18-yard pass from Jackson to TE Mark Andrews on 3rd and 5 to the Baltimore 42. It wasn’t until the Ravens got into New England territory that the defense began to batten down. They were able to hold the Ravens to just 6 yards on 3 plays as the Ravens were faced with 4th and 4 at the New England 38. Ravens head coach John Harbaugh decided to go for it as he left the offense out on the field.
Jackson then found WR Willie Snead IV for a 7-yard yard pass to the New England 31 for the first down. An Offensive Too Many Men on the Field Penalty on the Ravens on the ensuing 1st down backed them up to the New England 36. But it didn’t matter as after a quick 4-yard run by Ingram, Jackson found Brown for a 16-yard pass down to the New England 16 for another 1st down. Jackson then followed that up with an 11-yard scramble down to the New England 5. A scramble by Jackson for no gain ended up being the last play in the 3rd quarter.
When the 4th quarter began, Jackson found Boyle short over the left side as the tight end took it into the endzone for the touchdown. But on the PAT, Tucker just missed the left upright as it went no good to give the Ravens a 30-20 lead with 14:54 left in the game.
The Patriots got the ball back as Brady came out of the gates throwing. Starting from his own 25, Brady found Sanu and Edelman for a combined 4 catches for 27 yards up to the Baltimore 48. After 2 consecutive incompletions, the Patriots were faced with 3rd and 10 from the Baltimore 48. Brady took the snap and looked deep for Mohammed Sanu. Instead he found Ravens SS Earl Thomas over the middle for the interception. Thomas brought the ball back to the Baltimore 32, where his offense took over.
The Ravens offense then began another long, grinding drive down the field like in their previous scoring drive. They not only kept pounding and gashing the Patriots with the run, Lamar was able to complete a few quick passes to keep the drive going. The Ravens were also added by 2 costly penalties by the Patriots (Defensive Offside on 3rd and 4 from the Baltimore 38 & Illegal Use of the Hands on 3rd and 7 from the New England 30) for 1st downs to keep the drive alive. But more importantly, the Ravens kept the clock winding down with each snap and each play.
The Ravens got down all the way to the New England 1 before getting faced with a 3rd and goal from there. Jackson then plunged over the goal line (well he actually got help from one of his lineman) for the score. Tucker booted the PAT through the uprights as it was 37-20 with 3:12 left in the game.
Down 3 scores and with a little over 3 minutes left in the game, the Patriots chances of winning and their ‘perfect season’ was dwindling down to 0%. On their next possession, they just ran 6 plays for a total of 9 yards before then being forced to punt with just 1:03 left in the game. Jackson simply had to kneel the ball twice to run out the clock to end game.
When the clock read 00:00, it was the Ravens who were jumping up and down and celebrating their big prime time win over the visiting Patriots.
For the Patriots, they go into their bye week licking their wounds while trying to prepare themselves for their 2nd half of the 2019 NFL Season.
Patriot Statistical Standouts
QB Tom Brady: 30-for-46 for 285 yards, 1 TD, and 1 INT for a QB Rating of 80.4
RB James White: 9 carries for 38 yards (4.2 yards per carry) and 1 TD, 2 catches (on 3 targets) for 46 yards
WR Julian Edelman: 10 catches (on 12 targets) for 89 yards and 1 fumble loss
WR Mohammed Sanu: 10 catches (on 14 targets) for 81 yards and 1 TD
P Jake Bailey: 5 catches for 232 yards (46.4 yard per punt), 3 punts inside the 20
LB Dont’a Hightower: 14 tackles (11 solo, 3 assists)
DT Lawrence Guy: 2 tackles (2 solo, 0 assist), 1.0 sacks
FS Devin McCourty: 7 tackles (7 solo, 0 assists)
Numbers! Numbers! Numbers!
.700 – The winning percentage of the Patriots under Coach Bill Belichick in games before the bye week (14-6)
4 – The number of total yards by the Patriots in the 1st quarter
182 – The number of total yards by the Patriots in the 2nd quarter
156 – The number of total yards by the Patriots for the entire 2nd half
1,085 – The number of days since the last time WR Julian Edelman lost a fumble in a regular season game (Last time was on November 13, 2016 in a 31-24 loss at home to the Seattle Seahawks)
14:02 - The difference in time of possession between the Baltimore Ravens (37:01) and the New England Patriots (22:59)
637 – The number of rushing yards Ravens QB Lamar Jackson has for the season, the most through a team’s first 8 games of a season in NFL history
74 – The number of different receivers Patriots QB Tom Brady has thrown to throughout his entire career
567 – The number of career receptions for WR Julian Edelman, putting him 2nd All-Time in franchise history (WR Wes Welker, 562)
Interesting Tidbits of the Game
Fox Fist Bump
The Fox Fist Bump goes to none other than Ravens QB Lamar Jackson.
Jackson put up some good stats in tonight’s game against the ‘Boogeymen’ Patriots defense (17-for-23 for 163 yards and 1 TD, 16 carries for 61 yards and 2 TDs). But it’s how he got them was even more impressive. It felt like every time he threw the ball that it was always going for a 1st down or close to it. It was precise, right to his target, and no hero ball and trying to throw it into double coverage.
Then on the ground, it was just like watching poetry in motion. Jackson’s footwork, elusiveness in the pocket, and ability to run were on full display. There were a handful of times I thought he was going to be sacked in the backfield for a loss, yet he somehow was able to slip away and gain some yards. Not to mention that he not only faked out everybody in those QB keeper plays, he was able to stop on a dime, pivot away from a Patriots defender, and then turn on the jets. It was like watching a video game in action.
Jackson didn’t let the moment or who he was facing get to him. He played hard, he played smart, and he played like an NFL quarterback.
To paraphrase a line from the movie John Wick, if the Patriots defense were the Boogeyman, then Lamar Jackson is the one you send to kill the f***ing Boogeyman.
The Meatball of the Week
The Meatball of the Week is none other to the entire Patriots defense.
All this time, we’ve been hearing about how they are the ‘Greatest of All-Time’ and how they just smother the competition. Not to mention they come up with their own little group name the ‘Boogeyman’ and pretty much have made t-shirts to sell.
Well against the Ravens, the Boogeymen played like garbage.
They allowed themselves to get gashed to the tune of 26 first downs, 373 total yards, and 37 points for the entire game. They committed 4 penalties that I counted with nearly all of them resulting in a first down that helped keep the Ravens offense on the field. They barely could put any pressure Lamar Jackson and instead became part of a highlight reel that showed him running and juking while Patriot defenders were tripping over their own feet or colliding with one another.
But worst of all, they were exposed as a unit that could not stop the run at all. We saw this at Buffalo when Frank Gore gashed them for 100+ yards and then last week the Browns Nick Chubb ran all over them for 133 yards. Nobody paid attention to them because the Patriots won those games.
Well people are now gonna start paying attention to the fact for the 2nd consecutive week, the Patriots defense allowed another runner to rush for 100+ yards against them (Ravens RB Mark Ingram finished the game with 116 yards on 15 carries for 7.7 yards per carry) and the Ravens as a whole to put up 211 yards rushing.
After their bye week, things are only going to get tougher as they’ll be facing teams like the Eagles and Cowboys, who can actually run the ball and run the ball well.
So, go on, gloat how you’re the ‘Boogeymen’ and how you beat up on horrible competition. But don’t whine or pout when a good team punches you in the mouth.
Play of the Game
The Fumble Heard 'round Baltimore
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