Watch CBS News

Bob Haynie: Ravens Show Grit In Road Win Over Browns

On a day in which they may have lost TE Dennis Pitta for the season with a hip injury, the Baltimore Ravens remained focused. On a Sunday afternoon in Cleveland in which their defense allowed 375 yards and three red-zone TD's, the Ravens improvised and adapted.

After 60 minutes of football, they did just enough to get the job done.

Led by some big plays from QB Joe Flacco and WR Steve Smith, Sr. and the reliable right leg of K Justin Tucker, Baltimore rallied to defeat the Browns 23-21 at FirstEnergy Stadium for their second-straight victory.

For the Ravens, who were 2-6 on the road in 2013, it was a big way to end a stretch of three-straight games against AFC North foes. After losing the opener to the Cincinnati Bengals, they have bounced back to defeat the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Browns and have to have a much better outlook on their early part of their season.

To say that there have been some distractions around the team would be the understatement of the millennium. Yet, so far, they have been able to push the distractions aside and win games.

However, all is not perfect with the team on the field.

Pitta's injury could be huge. He is Flacco's main man and his absence will weaken the pass offense. That being said, this should present a golden opportunity for FB Kyle Juszczyk to become a major part of Baltimore's game plan. Juszczyk had three catches on Sunday including a touchdown.

The secondary got lit up by Cleveland QB Brian Hoyer who was 19-25 for 290 yards and a TD. CB Lardarius Webb looked rusty and S Matt Elam looked lost. Hoyer made it a point to pick on those two. Hopefully, Webb will get his game together as tries to return from a back injury. As for Elam, the Ravens need him to start playing like a first-rounder.

In the end, the Ravens were able to ride the arm of Flacco to get the W. Flacco hit Smith, Sr. with a 32-yard pass during the final drive to put his team in a FG range. Tucker calmly booted a 32-yarder as time expired to win it.

For Flacco, it was his 20th game-winning drive and definitely won't be his last.

The Ravens return home for the Carolina Panthers this coming Sunday.

I'm assuming it will be another busy week for coach John Harbaugh and his team on and off the field.


Related Stories - Baltimore Ravens:


View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.