On Now
Coming Up
  • Thu., Jul. 28, 2016 11:30 AM EDT Live Training Camp Press Conference Head coach John Harbaugh, RB Javorius Allen, T Ronnie Stanley and S Eric Weddle will address the media.
  • Fri., Jul. 29, 2016 11:30 AM EDT Live Training Camp Press Conference Head coach John Harbaugh, tight ends coach Richard Angulo, TE Dennis Pitta, DT Brandon Williams and G Marshal Yanda will address the media.
  • Mon., Aug. 01, 2016 7:00 PM EDT Training Camp Military Appreciation Day The first M&T Bank Stadium practice will take place on Monday, Aug. 1 at 7 p.m. This practice – free and open to all fans – coincides with the Ravens’ annual Military Appreciation Day. Approximately 3,500 special seats will be reserved for active service members and veterans who present valid military identification upon check-in at the stadium.
  • Sat., Aug. 06, 2016 6:00 PM EDT Training Camp Fireworks Night On Saturday, Aug. 6 at 6 p.m., the second M&T Bank Stadium practice will showcase the organization’s third-annual Fireworks Night, an event highlighted by post-practice autographs for children and a fireworks/laser show.
  • Fri., Sep. 09, 2016 5:00 PM EDT Countdown To Kickoff Party Presented By Miller Lite Grammy Award®-nominated rock band 3 DOORS DOWN will perform at the Ravens Countdown to Kickoff Party Presented by Miller Lite on Friday, Sept. 9 at Maryland State Fairgrounds. Gates open at 5:00 p.m. Open to all ages.
  • Mon., Oct. 03, 2016 5:00 PM EDT A Purple Evening A Purple Evening is back! Join Purple on Monday, October 3rd for on-field drills, player appearances and autographs, giveaways, and much more! Tickets will go on sale soon. Check Purple-Just for Women on Facebook for the latest club and event information.
  • Sun., Oct. 23, 2016 7:30 AM EDT Purple Away Game Trip Up the Jersey Turnpike we go! Hit the road with the Purple Club on Sunday, October 23rd to watch our Baltimore Ravens take on the New York Jets for a 1:00 p.m. game at MetLife Stadium. Don't miss your chance to join the only NFL women's fan club to travel into unfamiliar territory!
  • Sat., Dec. 10, 2016 2:00 PM EST Army vs. Navy Football Don't miss one of the greatest events you can ever attend! The Army-Navy Game presented by USAA returns to M&T Bank Stadium on Saturday, December 10, 2016

News

Print
RSS

The Breakdown: Eisenberg's Five Thoughts vs. Bengals

Posted Nov 10, 2013

Ravens rise up with season on line. Not even a smidgen of second-half offense. Bad Bengals call in OT.


Five thoughts on the Ravens’ 20-17 win over the Cincinnati Bengals Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium:

Ravens Rise Up With Season On The Line
It’s not a stretch to say the Ravens’ season was on the line as overtime began. They came in desperately needing a win over the AFC North leaders, and they played well enough to lead the whole way, but then they coughed up the win in stunning circumstances, on a last-ditch Hail Mary that forced extra time. The stadium fell silent, the fans were reeling and even the players admitted they were waylaid, knocked flat. “It took a couple of minutes” to get over what happened, cornerback Lardarius Webb said. An overtime loss would have ranked with the most galling in franchise history, pretty much sealing the Ravens’ fate as a non-playoff team in 2013. The stakes were that high as overtime began, and to the Ravens’ credit, they rose to the occasion – big time. The defense made a fourth-down stop. The offense moved the chains just far enough. Justin Tucker blasted a game-winning field goal. It was a “pedigree” moment, attributable to having a lot of players who have accomplished a lot over the years, and don’t choke and don’t blink at the challenge of performing when a game, or a season, is on the line.

Talk Will Be About Hail Mary, But Offense Was To Blame
The defense gave up the big play that almost cost the Ravens’ the game, but it was the Ravens’ sputtering offense that put them in danger of losing a game they should have put away earlier. The Ravens defense played magnificently, swarming Cincinnati quarterback Andy Dalton and mostly limiting his array of weapons. Meanwhile, the Bengals were awful for most of the game, losing ugly turnovers, committing key penalties and botching plays. With all that going for them and a 17-0 lead as of the second quarter, the Ravens needed just a smidgen of offense in the second half to seal a win. But Joe Flacco and company couldn’t provide even that smidgen. The Ravens’ second-half offensive stats were abysmal – six possessions, 57 yards, two turnovers, zero points. They couldn’t run the ball or stay on the field, opening the window for the Bengals to come back. Everyone will talk about the defense blowing it on the Hail Mary, but the Ravens never should have been in that position. “We struggled, man. We’ve got to get better,” Flacco said of the offense, his disgust evident. I would say, well, what he said.

Bad Bengals Call In Overtime
On the opening possession of overtime, the Bengals faced a fourth-and-2 at the Baltimore 33. Bengals Coach Marvin Lewis went for it, and a worst-case scenario unfolded – the Ravens not only covered the swing pass to Giovanni Bernard, but Bernard lost 11 yards when he reversed his field in trying to pick up the first. As a result, the Ravens took over at their 44, near midfield, and needed just a couple of first downs to set up Tucker for the game winner. If I’m Lewis, I would have punted on that fourth down at the 33, pinning the Ravens back. The Ravens hadn’t done anything on offense for quite awhile; the chances of them mounting a long drive were slim. The Bengals stood an excellent chance of getting the ball back with good field position. Asked about going for it, Lewis said, “Obviously you don’t want to lose the yards we lost.” On a day of huge swings, that one was decisive.

Offensive Trickery A Success
After half a season of miserably slow starts, the Ravens’ coaches pulled out all the stops to get the team going early. It was a welcomed sight. Offensive Coordinator Jim Caldwell trotted out a flea-flicker, an end-around to Tyrod Taylor and Haloti Ngata as a blocker – all in the first 20 minutes. Meanwhile, Defensive Coordinator Dean Pees dialed up extra pressures that rattled Dalton and produced turnovers that helped the Ravens take their first lead in more than a month. The edgy plays made a difference, electrifying the home crowd and giving the Ravens a jolt. In the early going, they seemed to play with more urgency than we’ve seen recently. A role reversal of sorts occurred later and the slow-starting Ravens became the slow-finishing Ravens, unable to seal the deal, but I would label the tricky stuff a success. The Ravens need it, especially on offense. More, please.

Short Takes
Cornerbacks can’t play much better than Webb and Jimmy Smith did for the Ravens. Smith is becoming the player the Ravens envisioned when they took him in the first round in 2011 … Flacco was all over the map, mixing awful throws with brilliant plays. He was picked off twice and fortunate not to throw four to the other side, but he also made great plays on his touchdown pass to Dallas Clark and his pressure throw to Ed Dickson that set up Tucker’s field goal … The Ravens’ rushing total of 85 yards was their third-highest of the season, but no one was applauding. Ray Rice gained just 30 yards on 18 carries … It was a sad commentary when the Ravens didn’t try to move any closer than the 30 once they were in Tucker’s range, but I didn’t blame them. Too many bad things could happen, and already had. The Ravens were reduced to counting on Tucker to come through from a long way out. I’m sure Matt Stover could relate.


Please Note

The opinions, analysis and/or speculation expressed on BaltimoreRavens.com represent those of individual authors, and unless quoted or clearly labeled as such, do not represent the opinions or policies of the Baltimore Ravens' organization, front office staff, coaches and executives. Authors' views are formulated independently from any inside knowledge and/or conversations with Ravens officials, including the coaches and scouts, unless otherwise noted.

Related News

Recent Videos

Recent Photos