Ravens nab unlikely win as Jackson throws 4 INTs
- University of Maryland graduate
- Lives in the Baltimore area with his wife and son
BALTIMORE — Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson once again did something the football world has rarely seen. He’s just not happy about this one.
In beating the Cleveland Browns 16-10 on Sunday night, Jackson became the first quarterback in eight years to win a game after throwing four interceptions. Quarterbacks had lost 41 straight games when throwing four interceptions.
“I’m hot,” Jackson said. “I feel like those drives, when the interceptions came, we could’ve done something on those drives. We could’ve put points on the board.”
Jackson then tapped his chest, “I just told my team, ‘That’s me. I owe y’all.'”
The last starting quarterback to win after throwing four interceptions was Andy Dalton, who beat the Ravens in the 2013 season finale when he was with the Cincinnati Bengals.
On Sunday night, Jackson threw a career-high four interceptions and all the picks came when he wasn’t pressured. He was intercepted three times on his final five passes of the second quarter, and he was then picked off early in the fourth quarter on an underthrown deep pass to tight end Mark Andrews.
Fortunately for Baltimore, the Browns only converted three points off those turnovers.
Asked if there is a common denominator on his interceptions, Jackson said, “I mean, it’s one game that it happened. They just made great plays on those interceptions. It wasn’t like I was throwing it right to them.”
The Ravens (8-3) now currently hold the AFC’s top seed with six games remaining, and they’ve won the past two games without much help from Jackson. Last week, Baltimore won in Chicago without Jackson, who was sidelined with an illness. On Sunday night, the Ravens won despite Jackson turning the ball over on nearly one-third of their drives.
The reason why Baltimore maintained a one-game lead atop the AFC North is because of its defense, which held the NFL’s top rushing attack to 40 yards on the ground, forced three turnovers and constantly harassed Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield.
“I think it’s pretty obvious that [Jackson has] done some special things [and] won us a lot of games, sometimes, almost by himself,” Ravens cornerback Marlon Humphrey said. “If you look at the Top 5 quarterbacks in the league, no one has a great game every time. So, for us to pick him up, it was just special — and to end the game on defense. ‘Wink’ [defensive coordinator Don Martindale] talks about, ‘Protect each other,’ and I felt like that’s kind of what we did today.”
Considered among the favorites in the NFL MVP race entering Sunday, Jackson is tied with Ryan Tannehill for the most interceptions in the NFL with 12. He has thrown three more interceptions this season than in any of his previous three years.
But Jackson did show resiliency in overcoming his mistakes against the Browns. After throwing three interceptions in the second quarter, Jackson was visibly frustrated on the sideline. He then opened the second half with a fadeaway, 13-yard touchdown pass to Andrews in which he dropped back 20 yards to elude pressure. He also led Baltimore with 68 yards rushing.
“Nobody gets flustered, and it starts with Lamar,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. “Lamar wants those plays back and he’s a massive competitor. Yet he doesn’t let it take control of him. He’s able to push it aside and he’s able to go play the next series and give you great football. It’s really a rare trait. To me, that’s one of the things that makes him the quarterback that he is.”
Baltimore has won six straight one-score games (within eight points), which matches the longest win streak in these close games in franchise history. The Ravens also did so in 2012, the year of their last Super Bowl title.
“We’re determined. We know we want to win,” Jackson said. “We fight adversity and we do it all. There’s been a lot going on throughout this whole season, and tonight was another part of it. We just have to keep on doing what we’re doing, and we’re going to click.”
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