June 24, 2024

The Baltimore Ravens’ hopes of a Super Bowl ended on Sunday, January 28, when the Kansas City Chiefs defeated them 17-10 in the AFC championship game. The Ravens’ offense was shut down and quarterback Lamar Jackson could not carry the team past its mistakes.

Lamar Jackson becomes 11th player in NFL history to win multiple MVP awards

Describing how he felt, Jackson told reporters, “I’m not frustrated at all. I’m angry about losing.”

Despite the disappointment, Jackson said he was proud.

“We have progressed to this stage. Our objective is modest—we’ve reached it, now we only need to finish the next time—but I’m really pleased of my group.

“We’re going to build, this offseason, get better, grind and try to be in this position again, but on the other side,” he said in response to a question regarding the future.

Against the Chiefs, the Ravens’ offense made too many errors.
For the Ravens, the game’s narrative may represent a “what if.” Every time Baltimore seemed to get ahead, it seemed like a crucial error would turn the tide back in the Chiefs’ favor.

When the Chiefs took a 14-7 lead on RB Isiah Pacheco’s run, the Ravens needed an answer to keep it close. Instead, left tackle Ronnie Stanley got beat on the edge, giving defensive end Charles Omenihu an opening to sack Jackson and force a fumble that was recovered by the Chiefs at the Baltimore 33-yard line.

But the crucial play at the end of the third quarter was what really placed the Ravens in a hole. Jackson connected with rookie wide receiver Zay Flowers for a 54-yard pass with roughly 50 seconds remaining in the quarter, which would have put them at the Chiefs’ 10-yard line.
Instead, for taunting cornerback L’Jarius Sneed, Flowers was given a 15-yard penalty. Jackson connected with Flowers once more on the opening play of the fourth quarter, but this time, Flowers fumbled at the 1-yard line, giving up a touchback rather than a chance to score.
“After the game, we had a few chances to score, but we didn’t get the touchdowns,” head coach John Harbaugh said to reporters. When you take a broader view of the game, you can see that it was really a defensive war. We failed to score the points, but they succeeded.
The last error occurred at the 6:53 mark of the fourth quarter when Jackson attempted to force a pass through triple coverage to tight end Isaiah Likely in the end zone, but Jackson misfired and the Ravens were in position for a field goal at the 25-yard line.

Defense Had a Tough Start but Maintained Baltimore’s Life
The Ravens offense had a great start to the game but faltered throughout. Conversely, the defense reversed the narrative.

On the first two drives, quarterback Patrick Mahomes of the Chiefs and the offense put up two scores against the renowned Ravens defense. A 9-minute, 75-yard touchdown drive was the second Chiefs drive.

The defense was put in a precarious position after a sudden change following the fumble as the game was a touchdown away from getting out of hand early. They were able to force a fourth-and-1 stop, and from that point on the defense dominated only allowing 3 points the remainder of the game.

 

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