Every Tuesday, blogger Matt Vensel breaks down a critical play, sometimes with the help of
The Ravens struggled to move the ball throughout Sunday’s 9-6 win over the
After a sack by Chiefs linebacker
The Chiefs responded by putting their dime package on the field. Their defensive backs backed off the line of scrimmage and linebacker
At the snap, all three wide receivers and Pitta ran vertical routes down the field and Rice slipped out of the backfield right away. The Chiefs quickly collapsed the pocket with Hali and their four-man rush. The quick pressure prevented the fifth-year quarterback from scanning the field long enough for one of his receivers to break open, and Johnson ran stride for stride with Rice, his safety valve, as the back broke toward the right sideline.
But Flacco saw a lot of green grass ahead of him, and with massive nose tackle
"When I saw it, I was like, 'I'm going to get it.' And I started to feel this guy [to my left] and I kind of put my left arm out to keep him off me for another half step," he recalled at the post-game news conference. "I could see the marker kind of far away. ... I saw it open up pretty good and I was pretty confident I could get it."
With Kansas City’s downfield defenders in man coverage, their backs turned to Flacco as he ran, he closed in on the 30-yard line, lunging across it as Chiefs defensive end
“How about Joe making the scramble, which was a huge play?” coach
It wasn't a pretty game for Flacco and his teammates, but when the Ravens needed a play, Flacco was able to provide it with his legs, not his rocket right arm. Plays like that have earned him that "winner" reputation. Three plays later, Rice dove one yard for more of your garden-variety third-down conversion. Game over.