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Winning Ugly

Baker Mayfield Chuck Clark Odafe Oweh Browns
Phil Hoffmann/Baltimore Ravens
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Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson kept the Cleveland Browns in the game with four interceptions.

This time, the defense bailed him out with a stellar performance and paved the way for a 16-10 victory on Sunday night.

The victory kept the Ravens atop the AFC North, just ahead of the Cincinnati Bengals. The Ravens are also the top seed in the AFC playoffs because the Tennessee Titans lost to the Patriots 36-13. New England is now the No. 2 seed and is a team the Ravens could see in the postseason.

Jackson had one of his worst games and completed 20 of 32 passes for 165 yards with a touchdown and the four turnovers.

The Ravens got down to the Browns’ 10-yard line on the opening drive of the second half thanks to a 39-yard pass to Mark Andrews, who was also awarded a pass interference penalty. Jackson then found Andrews on a third-and-goal from the 13 for a 13-3 lead.

Andrews caught four passes for 65 yards with the score.

“We’ve just got to keep coming,” Andrews said. “We’re in control of our own destiny, which is a beautiful thing, but we’ve got to get better. We’ve got to get better in every aspect, but we’ve got a bunch of fighters on this team. We believe, we trust each other, and we’re going to come each and every day to work, to get better, just trying to be the best team we can be. I think if we do that throughout these weeks – especially these divisional games – we’re going to reap the benefits of that.”

Cleveland pulled to within 13-10 when Baker Mayfield threw a 20-yard touchdown pass to David Njoku that was upheld after a lengthy review with 39 seconds left in the third quarter.  The ball appeared to touch the grass during replays.

The Ravens were driving again to start the fourth quarter, but Jackson threw another interception when his pass was deflected off Andrews. However, the Browns could not capitalize on the turnover.

Justin Tucker converted a 49-yard field goal with 1:15 remaining in the game that provided the 16-10 lead.

Cleveland went four-and-out on its final possession.

Baltimore outgained the Browns 303 to 262.

The Ravens also ran for 148 yards and held the Browns’ top-ranked rushing attack to 40 yards.

“To hold that offense down the way they did, to hold that rushing attack down the way they did, the play-action passing game that they have, the boots, the hard play-action, the chunk passes, they had a few, but I thought our guys played tremendously well across the board on defense,” coach John Harbaugh said. “Our edges were especially good.”

A 52-yard field goal by Tucker gave the Ravens a 3-0 lead at the end of the first quarter, Both teams played physically, and neither the Browns nor Ravens were able to establish a running game.

The Ravens had a 17-play, 59-yard drive that took 8:41 off the clock in the second quarter. But they had to settle for another short field goal by Tucker that provided a 6-0 lead midway through the second quarter.

Jackson had a costly interception with just over two minutes left in the half. The Browns made him pay with a 46-yard field goal by Chase McLaughlin.

Jackson threw another interception on the next possession, but Odafe Oweh forced another fumble on Mayfield. However, Jackson killed another potential scoring drive with his third interception of the first half.

“I threw four interceptions, three in the first half. I feel like those drives, when the interceptions came, we could’ve done something on those drives.” Jackson said. “We could’ve put points on the board. I just told my team, ‘That’s me. I owe y’all.’”

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