The Ravens (4-2) made their trip to London a success by knocking off the Titans, 24-16, at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.
After jumping to an 18-3 halftime lead, the Titans closed to within five points quickly in the third quarter. However, the offense and defense closed out the game for a much-needed victory.
Here are my five thoughts from the game:
Geno Stone Comes Up Big Again
With the Ravens clinging to an 18-13 lead and the Titans moving again, somebody needed to make a play for Baltimore. That somebody was Geno Stone, who stepped up big time after Kyle Hamilton was ejected in the third quarter for a helmet-to-helmet hit on former Ravens wide receiver Chris Moore.
Stone made a huge interception in the third quarter that ended a Titans' drive after they had crossed into Baltimore territory and were threatening to take the lead. That turnover by Stone turned the momentum in Baltimore's favor. Justin Tucker kicked his fifth field goal on the next drive to give Baltimore a little breathing room with an eight-point lead, and Stone played well the rest of game after Marcus Williams (hamstring) also departed.
Stone has been an unsung defensive player the past two seasons, starting seven games in 2022 after Williams fractured his wrist. With the Ravens' safety corps depleted in the second half, Stone and the entire Baltimore defense made enough plays to make sure this game didn't slip away.
Baltimore's Pass Rush Is Formidable
The Ravens had six sacks and 10 quarterback hits and kept relentless pressure on Ryan Tannehill and Malik Willis. Baltimore entered the game second in the league with 18 sacks, trailing only the Bills (21 sacks), and the pass rush has been prolific even with David Ojabo (ankle/knee), Odafe Oweh (ankle) and Tyus Bowser (knee) missing much of the season.
Baltimore's pass rush is coming from many different people. Jadeveon Clowney and Justin Madubuike had two sacks apiece in London, while Patrick Queen and Kyle Van Noy had one each.
"We preach getting to the quarterback," Queen said. "Whoever's number is called, we expect him to do the job."
The addition of Clowney has been a major acquisition for Baltimore's defense, and he's been a presence in the pass rush from Day 1 as a veteran who can bring pressure while lining up in multiple spots. Getting Van Noy was also a key move by General Manager Eric DeCosta, adding another veteran who has picked up the defense quickly and added to its versatility.
Defensive Coordinator Mike Macdonald has kept quarterbacks off balance with timely blitzes and Madbuike and Clowney are consistently winning one-on-one battles. Some feared the Ravens' pass rush would be a problem before the season, but instead it has been a strength.
Baltimore's Offense Has Red-Zone Troubles Again
For the second straight week, Baltimore didn't score a touchdown in the second half. The Ravens need to figure out why their offense is having so much trouble landing the knockout punch. Lamar Jackson was red hot early going 7-for-7 for 98 yards to start the game. He made timely pre-snap checks at the line of scrimmage that led to long completions to Nelson Agholor (21 yards) and Odell Beckham Jr. (32 yards).
Jackson (21-for-30, 223 yards, one touchdown, one interception) extended some plays by moving in the pocket and had some key runs (61 yards rushing) that helped the Ravens pull out the win. However, the Ravens were 1 for 6 in the red zone against the Titans and Baltimore's red-zone efficiency is headed in the wrong direction after a torrid start. The Ravens relied on six field goals by Justin Tucker to pile up enough points to win. But Offensive Coordinator Todd Monken, the players and coaches still have plenty to figure out before next week's home game against the Lions.
Depth and Defense Are Carrying Baltimore
The Ravens have had players going in and out of the lineup all season, but they have managed to win four of their first six games and could easily by 5-1 or 6-0. Williams (hamstring), Brent Urban (neck) and Kevon Seymour (ankle) were injured Sunday and didn't return, but Stone stepped in for Hamilton and Brandon Stephens continued to be one of Baltimore's most valuable players moving from corner to safety after Williams and Hamilton left the game.
The Ravens haven't given up more than 20 points for three straight weeks, and they believe their defense and depth will keep them in any game, no matter who they're playing or who goes down with injuries. That's a good feeling to have.
- Justin Tucker's six field goals equaled his career-high for one game. He also kicked six field goals against the Lions back in 2013.
- Devin Duvernay almost took it to the house with a 70-yard punt return in the first half, but Titans punter Ryan Stonehurst made a touchdown-saving tackle. Stonehouse might be the fastest punter in the NFL, which explains how he was able to make the play.
- Jackson completed passes to eight different targets, led by Mark Andrews (four catches, 69 yards) while Zay Flowers caught his first career touchdown pass. The pass-catching distribution bodes well for the Ravens' passing attack if their targets can stay healthy.
- Jackson threw a third-quarter interception, but the Ravens didn't lose a fumble in this game after losing six in their first five games. After drops were a major issue last week, the Ravens didn't have any against the Titans. The offense still has things to work through, but didn't beat itself.
- Williams made a huge touchdown-saving tackle on a 63-yard run by Derrick Henry that forced Tennessee to settle for a field goal. Falling behind early prevented Henry (12 carries, 97 yards, one touchdown) from getting as much work as Tennessee would have liked.
- The Titans were just 1 for 9 on third downs and were held to 233 yards total offense.
- A controversial roughing the passer call against Michael Pierce gave the Titans momentum and there were several questionable calls that went against the Ravens. That would have been a bigger storyline had the Ravens not gone on to win.
- Gus Edwards (16 carries, 41 yards) and Justice Hill (eight carries, 35 yards) shared the running back carries, while Keaton Mitchell played special teams but did not get a carry in his Ravens debut.