It was a divisional round rematch as the Baltimore Ravens play against the Tennessee Titans for the second straight year in the playoffs. Last season the Ravens were the overall number one seed who were upset by the Titans when they beat them 28-12 in the divisional round. This year, the Ravens looked for revenge as they have won five straight games and are coming into the playoffs hot.
The Titans were the first to put points on the board when quarterback Ryan Tannehill found wide receiver A.J Brown for a 10-yard pass to give them an early 7-0 lead. Tannehill finished the game with only 18 completions, 165 passing yards and one touchdown pass.
The Ravens’ defense did an excellent job in limiting the Titans’ to only one touchdown. They also managed to limit Derrick Henry, one of the best running backs in the game, to just 40 rushing yards all game. On the other hand, Lamar Jackson had a lot of rushing yards. He ended the game with 136 rushing yards, including his 48-yard touchdown run towards the end of the second quarter.
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The game-winning play came in the third quarter when running back J.K Dobbins made a four-yard run into the endzone to give the Ravens a 17-10 lead. A couple of field goals from both teams followed as the game ended 20-13 in favor of the Ravens.
After the game Jackson spoke about how it felt to win his first ever NFL playoff game and what it meant for both him and his team.
“It feels great, It’s always going to be naysayers, no matter what. I appreciate the win. I’m grateful for the win,” said Jackson to ESPN.
It was not an easy season for the Ravens. After dealing with a COVID-19 outbreak on the team, head coach John Harbaugh says this win was probably one of his best wins as a head coach.
“I’m going to tell you; right now, that’s the No. 1 best win,” Harbaugh said to ESPN. “In perspective, it’s going to be a Top 5 for sure. But right now, for me, this is the best win ever. And not just because of what was at stake, but because of the guys and what it meant to our team and to our guys, what it meant to all of our guys. This may be the best win I’ve ever been associated with.”
During the last few minutes of the game, Ravens’ cornerback Marcus Peters picked off Tannehill’s pass, which led to the Ravens’ defense to dance right on the Titans logo. This drew plenty of controversy, especially after Harbaugh’s frustration when the Titans’ players lined up around the Ravens logo during Week 11 of the season.
Defensive end Derek Wolfe commented on the dancing, claiming to was not a sign of disrespect or “revenge”, rather it was just part of the adrenaline the team had after making a huge play.
“Sometimes you act on emotion, and it felt like it was a good time to go ahead and do that,” Said Wolfe to the Baltimore Sun. “It wasn’t a disrespect thing. It was more like a team unity thing.”
With the Cleveland Browns defeating the Steelers on Sunday night, the Ravens will travel to Orchard Park to play against the Buffalo Bills on Saturday Night for the divisional round. Winner of this game will verse the winner of the Chiefs/Browns game for the conference championship.