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At First Glance: Ravens vs. Broncos


Ryan Mink: Oh my Lord, what a game. The Ravens weren't supposed to beat the Broncos. It wasn't even supposed to be close. But Baltimore fought back time and time again to beat the top-seeded Broncos in overtime, 38-35, to move on to the AFC championship for the second straight year. The Ravens looked like they were done when Denver returned a punt 90 yards for a touchdown in the first couple minutes. They looked finished when the Broncos returned the opening kickoff of the second half for a touchdown. They looked sunk when Joe Flacco was backed up with just a minute left needing seven points. But this team has unbelievable heart and fight. What a game for Joe Flacco. What a game for Corey Graham and the defense. Besides the Super Bowl victory, this may be the most classic game in Ravens franchise history. Onto the AFC championship, folks. And after this, how can you doubt the Ravens again?

Garrett Downing:What a game. This is the kind of game that people in Baltimore will remember for a long, long time to come. The Ravens came into Denver as heavy underdogs and pulled off a 38-35 upset with a remarkable comeback. Justin Tucker's 47-yard field goal won it in the second overtime after Joe Flacco hit Jacoby Jones for a 70-yard touchdown to tie the game at the end of the fourth quarter. The Ravens fought back time and time again, and Flacco made big throw after big throw to stand toe-to-toe with future Hall of Famer Peyton Manning. This was a remarkable game, and now the Ravens are headed back to the AFC championship for the second straight season, and seem to have the feel of a team of destiny.

*John Eisenberg: *The most epic game in the Ravens' history ends with a double-overtime victory propelling them into the AFC title game. They were about to succumb to the AFC's top-seeded Broncos when Joe Flacco's 70-yard Hail Mary touchdown pass to Jacoby Jones in the final minute sent the game into overtime. You will tell your kids you saw it in real time. The defense then forced Peyton Manning's third turnover, and the offense moved the ball far enough for rookie Justin Tucker to nail the game winner. The Ravens played from behind all day because of a pair of kick coverage breakdowns, and their defense held on for dear life against Manning, but it also produced turnovers and Flacco's big-play touch eventually made the difference. Call it what it was, the Mile High Miracle.

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