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(Monday, October 24th)
Final Score: Jacksonville 12, Baltimore 7
Jacksonville, FL (Sports Network) - There truly are no cakewalks in the NFL.
Jacksonville snapped a five-game losing streak by suffocating the league's fifth-highest scoring offense, battering and eventually shocking the Ravens, 12-7, on Monday night.
The Jaguars used an inspiring effort that forced the Ravens to franchise-low futility, holding them to 56 total yards until deep into the fourth quarter, sacking Joe Flacco three times and sealing the game with Drew Coleman's interception.
Maurice Jones-Drew ran for 105 tough yards for Jacksonville (2-5), which ventures to Houston next Sunday. Rookie Blaine Gabbert completed only 9-of-20 passes for 93 yards, but he didn't turn the football over in a game that seemed to feature the ball on the ground at every turn.
Jaguars head coach Jack Del Rio played the "respect" card after the game, saying that he "knew this was an opportunity to right things and gain a little respect against a very, very good football team."
The contest included six fumbles (just two lost) and Flacco's game-ending interception, as Coleman cut in front of Ed Dickson, pulled it in and slid to the ground.
Flacco completed 21-of-38 passes for just 137 yards with one touchdown toss. Ray Rice ran for only 28 yards, but caught five passes for 35 yards in defeat. Anquan Boldin caught a five-yard touchdown pass in the fourth quarter for the Ravens (4-2), who host the Cardinals next Sunday.
"That's about as bad as you can play on offense," said Ravens head coach John Harbaugh.
Jacksonville got the boost it needed early, recovering a Rice rarity. The Baltimore back lost a fumble in a regular-season game for the first time since December 27, 2009, spanning 522 touches, giving the Jaguars prime field position.
They then rolled the dice on fourth down from the Ravens 15-yard line, as Jones-Drew took a direct snap out of the Wildcat and ran a counter left for 12 yards to the three. On the next play, Jones-Drew was hit just shy of the goal line and fumbled. The officials initially ruled Jones-Drew down by contact, but after a Ravens challenge, replays showed a clear fumble and a Baltimore recovery.
Another Ravens three-and-out led to a punt from the end zone and room to work for Mike Thomas, who weaved right and darted up field for a 28-yard punt return. It set up Josh Scobee's 54-yard boot that found the netting right through the middle for the game's first points.
It was the first of three 50-plus-yard boots from the Jags kicker.
The offensive ineptitude continued, with the two teams combining for minus- eight passing yards at one stage. Jacksonville finally mustered some semblance of a drive with a 24-yard toss to Jason Hill and an 11-yard strike to the newcomer Mike Sims-Walker. The drive stalled, but a running-into-the-punter penalty gave Scobee a field goal opportunity, and he converted his second 54- yarder of the game.
The first-half stats weren't pretty on either side. Jacksonville mustered only 85 total yards, and that still was 69 more than Baltimore's 16 on 25 plays, a franchise low for total yards in a half. The Ravens didn't register a first down, and Flacco completed only six passes -- one of them to himself.
The Jaguars started the second half with a marathon march aided by a questionable personal foul penalty on a third-down play. There was plenty of Jones-Drew, Deji Karim and a 13-yard toss from Gabbert to Marcedes Lewis. The Ravens held before the end zone, and Scobee booted through a 22- yard chip shot for the nine-point edge just over midway through the third. The drive went 17 plays for 76 yards and ate up 8 1/2 minutes of the clock.
Baltimore registered its initial first down on the next possession when Rice ran off the right side for 12 yards on 3rd-and-1. Flacco found Boldin for 14 yards later in the march, but he took a sack that pushed the Ravens to the back edge of field goal range, and Billy Cundiff's 52-yard attempt missed badly to the right.
The Ravens finally got into a rhythm thanks to a no-huddle look. A 13-play, 90-yard march featured three underneath throws to Rice, including an 11-yard completion just before a 20-yard connection down the right sideline to Torrey Smith. Flacco then found Boldin, who tip-toed near the back end line for a five-yard score with 2:02 to go.
An onside kick failed, and Jacksonville ran time off the clock and forced the Ravens to burn their last two timeouts before Scobee drilled another long bomb, a 51-yarder for a 12-7 game.
Rice had the longest current streak in the NFL for touches without a fumble before he coughed it up in the first quarter...Neither team converted a first- half third down on 16 total chances...Jones-Drew was the first opposing back to reach the century mark against the Ravens since Houston's Arian Foster on December 13, 2010...Baltimore entered the game averaging 29.6 points per game...Hill caught four passes for 62 yards...Jacksonville posted 205 total yards to 146 for the Ravens...Baltimore linebacker Brendan Ayanbadejo was ejected in the third quarter for throwing a punch at Jaguars offense lineman Guy Whimper.
10/25 01:10:59 ET