Ravens can't recover from Bengals' dominant 1st half

Rex Christensen
September 14, 2018

So now our question becomes this: Is Marlon Humphrey the answer the Ravens have been looking for to shutdown A.J. Green?

The match is now a one point handicap in favour of Baltimore, but I would take the Bengals on the money line at 19/20 as I do feel that they have too much for the Ravens.

In a rivalry in which, historically, both starting quarterbacks have been their worst selves more often than not, it was Andy Dalton (24 for 42 for 265 yards and four touchdowns) who shined brightest under the "Thursday Night Football" lights. He ran for 96 yards against the Ravens in the final game last season, and ran for 95 against the Colts in addition to catching five passes for 54 yards. When Justin Tucker drilled a 55-yarder early in the third quarter, it was suddenly 28-17.

After a first-quarter interception, his 75th since the 2013 season for the second-most in the league, Flacco tightened up and nearly pulled off an impressive comeback until Bengals safety Shawn Williams forced a turnover to effectively end the game. The third time proved to be the charm. The long ball fell to safety Shawn Williams, who had defensive end Carlos Dunlap's pressure off the edge to thank.

But the Bengals offense still couldn't get in sync. Green still remains the team's biggest offensive playmaker and finished with 6 grabs for 92 yards and a touchdown.

But once they crossed the 50, disaster struck. Nathan Peterman looks completely out of his depth here and I would be shocked if the Bills do not start Josh Allen against the Chargers.

Every Ravens fan remembers the last time the team faced the Bengals.

Dalton's 14-yard touchdown throw to Boyd made it 28-7 late in the first half. Green was a factor there, too. He also reeled in 5 catches for 54 yards. AJ. By comparison, the Ravens had only 27 yards and one first down during that span.

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Green is the fourth Bengals receiver to catch three TD passes in a half, joining Marvin Jones (2013), Chad Johnson (2003) and Isaac Curtis (1973).

Their 21 points through 17 minutes were more than the Bengals scored in 10 of their 16 games last season. The 3 touchdown passes each went to newly added receivers for the team, Michael Crabtree, John Brown, and Willie Snead.

Still, it was a performance worthy of the '88 champs even though they lost rookie center Billy Price with an ankle injury on the drive they went up 21-0.

In what started as an ugly, mistake-filled affair, the Bengals got great field position after Joe Flacco's poor interception.

Baltimore held the Bills to just 33 yards and no first downs in the first half.

On third down Eifert drew a pass interference call on safety Tony Jefferson in the end zone to bring the ball to the Baltimore 1.

The Ravens have a pretty good secondary, and they had no chance against Green.

"John is a different type of player, just with his speed and what he does to defenders", Flacco said. The backup scooped up the fumble he forced and took it 83 yards to the house for the game-sealing score.

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