The Bengals will play in their third divisional game of the season at Baltimore today. Follow along here for live updates from the game!
Jackson continued to frustrate the Bengals’ defense, mixing in the occasional effective pass with tricky run plays. He moved the Baltimore offense deep into Cincinnati territory and on 3rd-and-goal, he was sacked by Geno Atkins, forcing another Tucker field goal to give the Ravens another lead, 24-21.
Cincinnati was struggling to get plays on offense, but their top healthy receiver made two critical plays on third down. A five-yard diving play and another 32-yard reception on a 3rd-and-11 were key on the drive, as Cincinnati lined up for a 51-yard game-tying field goal, but Randy Bullock pushed it wide right.
The Bengals’ defense appeared to have held Baltimore’s offense to a punt, but John Harbaugh opted to go for it on 4th-and-1. The Ravens got it, but an illegal formation was called and Baltimore ended up having to punt after all with the Bengals taking possession at 2:45 left on the game clock.
Cincinnati was pushed back deep into their own territory because of another block-in-the-back penalty on the punt return, but they went to work with under three minutes to play. Dalton started the drive with a 20-yard reception to Uzomah and a 7-yard dump-off to Giovani Bernard.
On a 4th-and-3, Dalton looked to Cody Core and it was bobbled and dropped to seal the crushing loss. The Ravens defeated the Bengals, 24-21.
After a couple of nice runs by Gus Edwards, the Ravens’ offense looked poised to make a big play. However, Carlos Dunlap snuffed out a Jackson run attempt, forcing the rookie quarterback to make a poor decision. Jackson threw an interception to Shawn Williams, which was his fourth of the year and gave Cincinnati possession at the Baltimore 31-yard line.
Dalton hit Joe Mixon on a swing pass for 10 yards and followed it up with a 14-yard pass to C.J. Uzomah. On first-and-goal, Dalton hit Matt Lengel for the score and the 14-13 lead.
Baltimore started the subsequent drive off in a hole, as the return man was tackled at the 7-yard line. The Ravens’ offense came up with a couple of nice plays, but opted to go for it in their own territory on a 4th-and-1. The Marvin Lewis-led defense stepped up again and held Jackson to no gain, as the Bengals took over on downs.
Dalton and Co. picked their way for a few short-yardage plays, including a big third-down conversion from Tyler Boyd. After going 2-for-7 on third downs in the previous drives, Cincinnati converted two more, and then the big play happened.
John Ross came up with his fourth touchdown of the season, as he wrestled the ball away from Marlon Humphrey on a floater to the end zone. The Bengals took a 21-13 lead with 5:45 in the third quarter.
Even with the momentum on the Bengals’ side, the Ravens’ offense wasn’t calling it quits. Jackson converted a 2nd-and-17 on a pass, as well as getting another nice run from Edwards. The frustrations of facing a simple option-style continued and Edwards capped the drive with a 12-yard touchdown run and the two-point conversion, putting the game at a 21-21 tie.
The Bengals’ defense held strong once again, forcing another Ravens punt. On a critical third-and-7, Dalton his Boyd for a 23-yard gain down the right sideline.
Joe Mixon grabbed a screen pass for 21 more yards to get the Bengals into scoring position and then capped the drive off with a one-yard touchdown run after a Jimmy Smith holding penalty. The touchdown tied the game at 7-7 with 12:57 to play.
Joe Mixon scores a game-tying TD... and then plays piano. pic.twitter.com/zytt3IHrTv— Josh Kirkendall (@Josh_Kirkendall) November 18, 2018
Baltimore responded well, though, as Jackson made a couple of nice throws to keep the Ravens offense in more manageable situations. Jackson led the Bengals into field goal position, but a huge offensive pass interference penalty against rookie tight end Mark Andrews forced them to punt.
Andy Dalton and the offense took over once again at their own 9-yard line, but punted for the fourth time in five drives (including three three-and-outs). Baltimore had favorable field position thanks to an inexplicable block-in-the-back penalty on Brandon Wilson from the kicking team.
Baltimore quickly moved into scoring position as halftime approached, but a crucial holding call changed a 3rd-and-1 to a 3rd-and-11 at the Bengals’ 18. Cincinnati’s defense held strong, and forced a Justin Tucker field goal which he converted for a 10-7 right after the two-minute warning.
Cincinnati took the ball at their own 25-yard line and tried to get something going and moved it a little bit, thanks to a 20-yard scramble by Dalton. The Bengals’ offense couldn’t get anything going and had to punt with 22 seconds left.
Unfortunately, Malik Jefferson was called for a hold on the punt and Cincinnati’s defense allowed a big pass to allow another Tucker field goal opportunity from 56 yards out with five seconds left. He hit it and the Ravens took a 13-7 lead into the locker room, while also receiving the kickoff in the third quarter.
Cincinnati received the ball, but went three-and-out to start the game. Baltimore took over and rookie Lamar Jackson tore the Bengals apart with his legs.
Running various forms of the wildcat formation, Jackson ran the ball eight times and didn’t throw a single pass. However, he led them to an opening touchdown drive, courtesy of Alex Collins with the aid of a Dre Kirkpatrick penalty for a 7-0 lead.
The Bengals and Ravens had to punt on back-to-back drives, and Alex Erickson had a nice return when Cincinnati was getting the ball back. A Clayton Fejedelem penalty negated a bit of the gained yardage, but the Bengals still had decent field position. Even so, Cincinnati’s offense went three-and-out once again.
Since then, both teams enjoyed some success before crashing back down to earth and are now both fighting tooth and nail for their playoff lives as they meet again for the second time this season.
The Bengals are 5-4, but have hardly looked the part as they have been dismantled by the Chiefs and Saints in two of their last three games. Their ceiling for success has seemingly been decided as Cincinnati didn’t look like they belonged on the same field as those contenders.
The Ravens are in an almost must-win situation this week. Technically they are still alive in the AFC North and Wild Card race, but if they lose to the Bengals twice, that gives Cincinnati a crucial tiebreaker over Baltimore — not to mention they are on a three game losing streak and need a change of fortune in order to salvage their season.
Injuries will also play a huge part in this game. Cincinnati will be without A.J. Green who had three touchdowns against the Ravens in Week 2. Baltimore will be without Joe Flacco, although the team maintains they would consider playing him even if he doesn’t practice all week. In all likelihood, we will possibly see rookie quarterback Lamar Jackson get his first start of his career.
This will likely be a matchup that helps decide whether one of these teams will make the playoffs or be left on the outside looking in.
How to watch the Bengals take on the Ravens:
Game: Cincinnati Bengals (5-4) at Baltimore Ravens (4-5)
Date/Time: Nov. 17th, 2018 at 1:00 p.m. EST
Location: M&T Bank Stadium, Baltimore, MD
Streaming: Fubo TV
Series Leader: Bengals lead the all-time series 23-22
Streak: Bengals have won the past two games
Coaches vs. Opponent: Marvin Lewis: (19-12) vs. John Harbaugh (9-12)
TV Broadcast: The game will air on CBS-TV. In the Bengals’ home region, it will be carried by WKRC-TV (Ch. 12) in Cincinnati, WHIO-TV (Ch. 7) in Dayton and on WKYT-TV (Ch. 27) in Lexington. Broadcasters are Kevin Harlan (play-byplay), Rich Gannon (analyst) and Steve Tasker (sideline reporter).
Radio Broadcast: The game will air on the Bengals Radio Network, led by Cincinnati flagship stations WLW-AM (700), WCKY-AM (ESPN 1530; all sports) and WEBN-FM (102.7). Broadcasters are Dan Hoard (play-by-play) and Dave Lapham (analyst).
SB Nation Ravens site: Baltimore Beatdown
Weather: Low 50’s, Mostly Cloudy [NFL weather]
Odds: Bengals open as underdogs of 3.5 points [Odds Shark]