Returning to action after the bye last week, things started off beautiful for Baltimore today in Cleveland, with the Ravens scoring on both of their initial drives. After that, the Ravens offense looked inept for most of the rest of the game. Some credit goes to the Browns defense, but the Ravens offense struggled plenty on their own.
Trailing 15-14 in the 4th Quarter, the Ravens offense was able to wake-up in time, to leave Cleveland with the 25-15 win. The Ravens improve to 6-2 on the year, and return to Baltimore next week to host the Oakland Raiders.
1) Baltimore had good kickoff coverage to start the game against Cribbs. Cleveland would go 3 and out on that initial drive, with the Browns unable to convert 3rd and 1.
2) The Ravens first series saw Rice ripping off 7 yards on 1st down, followed by Flacco hitting Boldin for 6 yards and a 1st down. On 3rd and 8, Flacco and Boldin connected again for another 1st down over the middle. Off a faked reverse, Rice ran off tackle to the right side for 11 yards, taking the Ravens to the Browns 36. With a play fake, Flacco rolled out to the right and found Dickson for 8 yards on 2nd and 6. Flacco then delivered a strike to Boldin for 16 yards and another 1st. Boldin’s 3rd reception took Baltimore to the Cleveland 8 yard line. Rice finished the drive, making people miss, and finding the end zone for a TD. With the extra point, the Ravens went up 7-0 with 8:32 left in the 1st Quarter. The 10 play, 70 yard drive, took 5:25 off the clock.
3) Like their first drive, Cleveland’s 2nd series ended with the Browns unable to convert on 3rd and 1.
4) Following the illegal formation penalty on Torrey Smith to begin the 2nd Ravens series, Bernard Pierce gained 9 yards. On 3rd and 5, Boldin had his 4th catch, getting across the 1st down marker. Using his blockers, Rice went right for 9 yards. On 2nd and 1, Leach got a rare carry for another Ravens 1st down. Smith had a great catch on the sidelines, going up high above Haden for 26 yards. On 2nd and 7, Rice made something out of nothing, gaining 5 yards to set up 3rd and short. Pierce ran straight ahead, again moving the chains. After having picked up an unsportsmanlike penalty, which moved Baltimore back 15 yards; Pierce picked up 3rd and 1, rushing for 12 yards and his first NFL TD. With the extra point, Baltimore took the 14-0 lead to end the 1st Quarter. 12 plays, 66 yards, and another 6:52 off the clock.
5) The 1st Quarter was about as perfect as it gets. The defense forced the two 3 and outs, and the offense had two scoring drives, holding possession for 12 minutes, and 17 seconds.
6) Cleveland had a 1st down on the Ravens 17 during their 1st series of the 2nd Quarter. On 3rd and 9, Baltimore swarmed to the ball on a short pass to Smith. This limited the Browns to a FG attempt.
7) On Baltimore’s first drive of the 2nd Quarter, Flacco found Pitta for 27 yards on 2nd and 6. This put the Ravens into Browns territory, with a 1st and 10 from the Cleveland 47.
8) Cleveland had a 1st and 10 from the Baltimore 17, with 2:44 left in the 1st half. The ravens were able to hold Richardson to back-to-back 1 yard runs on 1st and 2nd down, setting up 3rd and long. Baltimore’s defense made the 3rd down play, holding Dawson to a FG attempt.
9) Cary Williams had his 4th pick of the year in the 3rd Quarter, halting the Browns growing momentum. After moving backwards 15 yards, Williams was able to change directions and gain some positive yards, taking the ball into Cleveland territory.
10) On the Browns 2nd series of the 3rd Quarter, Baltimore forced a 3 and out. Upshaw wrapped up his former Alabama teammate on 1st down. On 3rd down, Ellerbe sacked Weeden for a 2 yard loss.
11) The 4th Quarter began with Ellerbe getting good pursuit on 3rd and long for the Browns, and forcing a Cleveland punt.
12) Down 15-14, the Ravens finally moved the chains for the first time in forever, with Flacco finding Boldin for 21 yards on 2nd and 10. Dickson caught a short pass, and fought for a couple of yards, setting up 2nd and 7 from the Cleveland 39. Rice would find holes on back-to-back series, moving the ball to the Browns 20. On 3rd and 10, Smith made a great play, spinning back away from the corner and exploding to the end zone for the TD. Baltimore would get an important 2 point conversion, with Flacco finding an uncovered Boldin in the end zone. This gave the Ravens a 22-15 lead with 4:26 left.
13) The Ravens took over on downs, inside the Cleveland 30, when the Browns did not convert on 4th and 2, late in the 4th Quarter.
14) Tucker made it a 2 possession game with his 42 yard FG late in the 4th, despite a high snap.
15) Reed got an interception late in the 4th, after missing two prior opportunities earlier in the game.
1) Cleveland started their first drive, with Richardson gaining 9 yards on 2nd down. He ran through several missed tackles.
2) With a little better awareness, Kruger might have been able to pick off Weeden’s first throw of the 2nd Browns drive.
3) Torrey Smith was called for an illegal formation penalty on the first play of Baltimore’s 2nd drive, eliminating a nice run from Pierce up the middle. After picking up 3rd and 2 from the Cleveland 9, Pierce was called for an unsportsmanlike foul, moving the Ravens back 15 yards.
4) The 2nd Quarter began with Richardson running for 19 yards on 2nd and 6. On 1st and 10 from the Browns 43, Cleveland gained 11 more yards on a pass to Watson. On 3rd and 4, Little caught a 6 yard pass for another Browns 1st down. Illegal contact on McClain gave the Browns 5 yards, and a new set of downs. On 1st and 10 from the Ravens 29, Richardson went straight ahead for 6 yards, followed with a carry to the left for 7 more. The Browns would get their first points, on Dawson’s 32 yard FG, capping the 12 play, 66 yard, 5 minute 42 second drive.
5) After reaching the Browns 47 on their 1st series of the 2nd Quarter, the Ravens offense stalled. Smith lost 4 yards on 1st down, which Rice gained back on 2nd. On 3rd and 10, the receivers were covered down the field; forcing Flacco to check down to Rice.
6) Richardson started Cleveland’s 2nd drive of the 2nd Quarter, with a 15 yard gain between the tackles. That took the Browns from their 13, out to their 28. Weeden and Gordon would connect for 26 yards, and it could have been more had Weeden made a better throw. That reception came on 3rd and 8. Baltimore would have had Cleveland punting from their 30 with a stop. The catch moved the Browns into Baltimore territory. On 2nd and 6 from the Baltimore 40, Little had a 23 yard grab, beating J. Smith. Dawson would pull the Browns within 8 (14-6), with his 32 yard FG. This was a 10 play, 76 yard drive for Cleveland.
7) After Cleveland’s 2nd FG, Baltimore took over with 1:47 left in the 1st half. With a 3 and out, the Ravens gave the Browns another chance for points just 44 seconds later. Two passes later, Little would gain 11 yards, beating good coverage from Graham. This gave the Browns a 1st and 10 from the Baltimore 30. A 19 yard pass to Benjamin set up a chip shot FG from Dawson, as the 1st half was ending. Dawson’s 3rd FG of the Quarter, made it a 14-9 game. The Browns moved 50 yards over 7 plays, in 1 minute.
8) Considine was charged with holding on the kickoff return to begin the 2nd half. This had Baltimore starting from their own 10, instead of the 27. A quick 3 and out gave the ball back to the Browns, less than a minute into the 3rd Quarter. Cleveland took over from their own 49.
9) Williams would pick him up on the next play, but how did Ed Reed miss that would be interception in the 3rd Quarter?
9a) As mentioned in #11 below, Reed missed another possible pick later in the Quarter.
10) On the first offensive play after Williams’ 3rd Quarter interception, Oher was charged with offensive holding. This put the Ravens into a 1st and 20 situation. On 3rd and 13, Flacco’s pass attempt went to the sideline, while Smith broke back inside. Not completed, the Ravens punted for the 2nd time in the Quarter.
11) The Browns were in a 3rd and 2 situation on their 3rd drive of the 3rd Quarter. On a swing pass to Richardson, Cleveland picked up just enough. A personal foul on Ellerbe, gave Cleveland another 15 yards on the following play, moving the Browns to the Baltimore 30. The Ravens would have gained those yards back on the following play, but the Ravens bench was charged with an unsportsmanlike penalty, which negated a Browns penalty. On 2nd and 4 from the Ravens 24, Weeden scrambled for 6 yards and a 1st down.
Dawson’s 4th FG, made it a 14-12 game. On the play prior to Dawson’s FG, Reed had a chance for an interception that would have been returned for a TD.
12) Baltimore’s offensive struggles continued into the 4th Quarter, with the Ravens punting for the 7th straight time, ending their 1st series of the Quarter. It was the 6th straight series where the Ravens went 3 and out. Dickson had a drop.
13) On Cleveland’s 1st full series of the 4th Quarter, J. Smith was charged with pass interference. He was hanging all over TE Jordan Cameron. On 2nd and 8 from the Ravens 44, Gordon had a 12 yard grab. On 1st and 10 from the Ravens 32, Little caught a 10 yard pass. Dawson’s 5th FG of the game. gave the Browns their first lead at 15-14.
1) Baltimore entered the 2nd Quarter in complete control of the game. By half time, Cleveland had gotten halted the Ravens momentum. Not only did the Browns have 3 scoring drives, but the Ravens offense had 8 plays for just 38 yards, with 2 punts in the 2nd Quarter.
2) In the 3rd Quarter, the Ravens offense gained -10 yards. They went 3 and out 4 times. They held the ball for under 6 minutes. The 3rd series ended with Flacco being sacked on 3rd down. The 4th series saw Rice on 1st and 2nd down, gaining just 1 yard. On 3rd and long, Flacco badly missed his receiver to the right.
After starting 10 for his first 10, Flacco was 5 for his next 14. He finished 15 for 24, for 153 yards, and 1 TD.
Rice had 25 carries for 98 yards, 3.9 per carry.
Pierce had 7 carries for 26 yards, 3.7 per carry.
Boldin caught all 5 passes he was targeted on.
Smith caught 4 of the 9 passes he was targeted on.
Pitta had 3 catches for 33 yards.
The Ravens were 4 of 14 on 3rd down. Cleveland was 5 of 16.
Richardson had 25 carries for 105 yards, 4.2 per carry.