The Ravens wins this season have been fairly one sided affairs so far. So one question that had yet to have been answered about this season’s edition was – How would this team respond if they were down in a close game in the second half?
The answer was an efficient offense and defense and the powerful right leg of Kicker Billy Cundiff.
With the Houston Texans leading 14-13 with Eight minutes in the Third Quarter after a 32-yard strike from Matt Schaub to Jacoby Jones the Ravens turned to the long ball. Joe Flacco hit Torrey Smith on two long completions. The first was an 19-yd reception on 3rd and 12 to keep the chains moving. The next was a streaking 51-yard bomb to Smith that eventually set up Billy Cundiff’s third Field Goal from 25 yards out. Cundiff would finish the day with five.
Baltimore now had the lead 16-14 and didn’t look back. The Ravens defense was able to fluster Matt Schaub with 4 sacks on the day and kept his offense scoreless for the last twenty one minutes of play.
The final dagger from the Ravens was on their next to last scoring drive as Ray Rice (162 Total yards) broke off a long run to set up a Ricky Williams 4-yd touchdown to give Baltimore a 26-14 advantage.
Quarterback Joe Flacco finished 20-33 for 305 yards, 178 coming in the second half. He overcame a very shaky Second Quarter as his Offensive line couldn’t answer the repeated Texans’ blitzes. Flacco overthrew a wide open Ed Dickson late in the quarter that led to a bad interception. Luckily the Texans were too far out of Field Goal range and the Ravens went into Halftime up 10-7.
Houston was able to move the ball well in the First half and picked up multiple First Downs (6 for 16 over all) but could only end up with one score in the First Half. That play was off a Ben Tate fumble that was recovered in the endzone.
The win is Baltimore’s third in a row (4-1) and allows them to stay ahead of the Steelers (4-2) and the surprising Bengals (4-2) atop the AFC North. The Texans drop their second in a row and now stand at (3-3). Baltimore will travel to Jacksonville to face the Jaguars on Monday Night Football next week.