BALTIMORE – The Baltimore Ravens essentially have two variations of the victory formation.
The first is when the quarterback is forced to take the knee to speed up the timer. The other occurs in the event that Justin Tucker comes on the field to try a game-winning kick.
“We’ve got the GOAT at kicker,” Lamar Jackson declared using the acronym “Greatest of All-Time.”
Tucker scored a 43-yard field kick on the last play to propel the Ravens over the Cincinnati Bengals 19-17 on Sunday night. The Ravens took the sole possession of first on the AFC North.
Tucker also hit a 58-yard shot during the 3rd quarter and even though they Ravens (3-2) lost 17-16 following Joe Burrow’s 1-yard sneak with 1:58 remaining they were able to feel secure because they just required a field goal. Tucker’s game-winning kick increased his record to 61 consecutive field goals that have been successful in the fourth quarter as well as overtime.
He has scored 17 times throughout his career when he makes a shot to score in the final seconds of regulation.
“What matters in those 1.3 seconds between snap, hold and the kick, are the things that are going to help the kick go through the uprights,” Tucker explained. “My emotions, my feelings during those 1.3 seconds it doesn’t matter regardless of whether I’m feeling comfortable or nervous, or completely scared. This is one reason why I take the time to pray a few seconds while I’m waiting to kick. Not to get outcomes, but rather to seek peace and express gratitude for the privilege of being present in the moment.”
Jackson was able to bounce back from his rough night of passing taking the Ravens by using his legs and arm in the winning run. Baltimore lost two leads of 17 and 21 points in the previous two home games, losing in the final to Miami in Miami and Buffalo. The Ravens were unable to hold a 10-point advantage in this one , but bounced back.
It was a stunning improvement of sorts for this Baltimore defense which gave up 41 points in the two losses last season to Bengals AFC champion Bengals. The Ravens played with Burrow and Ja’Marr chase under control , and they pulled off an impressive display during the 3rd quarter when Cincinnati (2-3) scored first-and-goal in the second quarter.
The Bengals were down 13-10 at the time they did not make the most of that chance. The most important incident was a 12-yard loss in which Cincinnati attempted a reverse pass on the 2nd down. A third-down touchdown led to on the Bengals back at 2 yard line, but the shovel pass on fourth down failed to complete.
“They played it well,” Burrow stated.
The Ravens then drove to the other side of the field to score an unorthodox field goal that resulted in a 16-10 score. Tucker’s earlier shot from the 58 mark broke the tie at 10-10. After the kick Tucker sat near midfield, and took a photo with arms stretched out.
“I’ve celebrated in many a humorous way over the years,” he added. “Also you have to set aside some money towards the final game. Also, I don’t want to be peaking too early.”
Baltimore enjoyed a 10-0 lead with Jackson’s score-making pass of 11 yards at Mark Andrews in the second quarter However, the game-winning quarterback was intercepted by the Cincinnati territory in the next play.
The Bengals scored after the 19-yard pass of Burrow towards Hayden Hurst, and the game was tied at halftime.
Jackson completed 19 of 32 yards for 173 yards, scoring an interception and touchdown He also rushed 12 times for the 58-yard mark. Burrow also scored a TD as well as a pick, and was on 24 of 35 for 217 yards.
Baltimore increased to 19-2 during the home openers in prime time in the coaching of John Harbaugh.
The three losses Cincinnati has suffered this season were due to field goals in the last play.
“We’ve lost three games on the last play of the game,” Bengals coach Zac Taylor told reporters. “I told the guys, ‘We’ve got to keep taking our shots, and the season will even itself out'”
This was also the tenth successive loss to the Bengals in an evening game on Sunday.
A week after Harbaugh’s decision to go for the fourth down on the Buffalo 2-yard line in a game tied backfired, Harbaugh had a few other tough decisions to make.
At the end of third quarter in the third quarter, the Ravens tried to score on Fourth-and-3 at the Cincinnati 41 however, Jackson was able to throw large open Tylan Wallace who probably could have scored. After Burrow was intercepted, Baltimore had fourth-and-4 from the 40. Then, Harbaugh had Tucker try his kick from the 58.
The Ravens faced fourth-and-1 at 3 on the fourth and decided to not go to the line, Baltimore kicked a short field goal which led to a score of 16-10. The Bengals had the chance to gain the lead by scoring the score — which they did but since the Ravens had the field goal there the score was just three points for the final play.
Cincinnati the WR Tee Higgins did not make an elusive catch, and he left with an ankle injury to his left. … Ravens S Marcus Williams left with a dislocated wrist and Harbaugh anticipates that he will take a long time. … Baltimore T Ronnie Stanley (ankle) played for the first time since the season’s opening.