(Monday, December 13th)
Final Score: Baltimore 34, Houston 28 (OT)
Houston, TX (Sports Network) - Josh Wilson picked off Matt Schaub and took it into the end zone in overtime as Baltimore spoiled Houston's comeback with a 34-28 win.
Houston had tied the game with 21 seconds left on a five-yard touchdown catch from Andre Johnson and a two-point conversion from Jacoby Jones that capped a 21-point second half comeback.
Baltimore won the coin toss in overtime and started with the ball, but had to punt as Joe Flacco was sacked on 3rd-and-10.
Houston got the ball back at its own nine-yard line and Schaub's first pass fell incomplete. On the next play, Schaub was looking for Kevin Walter to his left, but Wilson jumped the route, came up with the ball and ran in untouched for the win.
"I was in man-to-man, and it turned into a bit of a scramble, the quarterback threw it inside and I was just thinking that this couldn't be happening," said Wilson. "I just wanted to make sure I caught the ball."
The win helped Baltimore (9-4) bounce back from a loss last week to Pittsburgh that saw the team blow a late lead. The Ravens remain a game back of the Steelers for top spot in the AFC North and hold a two-game lead over three teams for one of the AFC wild card spots.
"I think finding a way to win in overtime is big for us," said Baltimore head coach John Harbaugh. "We haven't done that at times. This football team has lost a lot of close games by some crazy situations, and now you're down here playing Monday night football and this place is electric. We quieted it down for a while, but then obviously it was amped up again for the second half."
On the other hand, Houston (5-8) fell for the sixth time in seven games and is all but eliminated from playoff contention.
"At this stage with our back against the wall, to lose this is tough," said Schaub. "At the beginning of the year we had a different vision on how this season was going to go and it wasn't exactly this."
Flacco went 22-for-33 with 235 yards and two scores, both to Derrick Mason, who finished the game with six catches for 78 yards in the win. Willis McGahee had a rushing touchdown while David Reed had a 103-yard kickoff return.
"You don't like to have these kind of games where you're up and you give it up," said Flacco. "But we were able to win and it was a big win."
Schaub threw for 393 yards, most of it in the second half, on 31-of-62 passing with three touchdowns and two interceptions, and Johnson had nine catches for 140 yards and two scores in the loss.
"Every time we lose it's disappointing," said Houston head coach Gary Kubiak. "Tonight is a low point because it's tonight. In the NFL you work your tail off all week. If you win, you feel good. If you get beat, you feel bad. So I feel bad right now."
Holding a 14-point lead, Baltimore added to that on the opening kickoff of the third quarter. Reed took the kick three yards in his own end zone and opted to run it out. He appeared to be boxed in by three defenders near the 30, but got past the attackers and raced down the right sideline for a 28-7 lead.
Houston then held the ball for 7 1/2 minutes on a 70-yard, 16-play drive, but were only able to come up with three points on Neil Rackers' 24-yard field goal with 7:08 to play in the third.
After a three-and-out by Baltimore, Houston got another three points on the board with a 42-yard field goal from Rackers to make it a 28-13 game with 36 seconds left on the clock. The play before saw Walter make a catch at the left side of the end zone, but his knee hit out of bounds and a replay confirmed the call on the field.
Houston forced another punt from Baltimore, but was pinned at its own one-yard line. It didn't matter to Schaub, though, covering the field in 15 plays, which included two fourth-down conversions. On the last fourth down try from the seven, he fired a pass to the right side where Jones caught it for a 28-20 game with six minutes to play.
Baltimore was able to kill off 3:18 of the clock, but had to punt on fourth down and gave Houston the ball back at its own five.
Again Schaub was sharp when on a 4th-and-1 play he hit Jones for seven yards. A 20-yard catch by Johnson got the ball across midfield, and the next four plays netted 38 yards to set up a 1st-and-goal at the five. Schaub then threw the ball to the back of the end zone where Johnson leaped for the grab and kept both feet in. Jones then caught the two-point conversion to tie the game and send it to overtime.
On its second touch of the game, the Ravens took the lead. The eight-play, 52- yard drive, which saw no third downs, was capped when McGahee ran between the guard and the tackle at the left side on a one-yard score for a 7-0 lead with 3:17 left in the first.
After Rackers' 52-yard field goal attempt on the first play of the second quarter fell short, the teams traded punts, but Baltimore was able to pad its lead after starting a drive at the Houston 44.
On the punt, Lardarius Webb returned it 22 yards and an unsportsmanlike conduct call on Sherrick McManis gave the team excellent field position. Six plays later, Flacco threw the ball to the back of the end zone where Mason bobbled it, but held on for the nine-yard score with 5:23 left in the half.
After another exchange of punts, Chris Carr picked off Schaub to give the Ravens the ball at the Houston 38. Four plays later, Mason leaped in front of the defender near the goal line and took it in for a 26-yard score and a 21-0 lead with 1:37 to play.
The Texans finally got their offense on-track on their ensuing touch and were able to make it a 21-7 game heading into the break. After converting a second 3rd-and-10, Schaub found a wide open Johnson down the left sideline for a 46- yard score.
Houston totaled 489 yards, compared to just 253 for Baltimore, but controlled the ball for just 29 seconds more than the Ravens...Arian Foster finished the game with 20 carries for 100 yards and four catches for 25 yards in the loss...Ray Rice led the Baltimore rushing corps with 19 carries for 54 yards and added eight catches for 66 yards...The Ravens have won all four matchups with the Texans...Baltimore hosts New Orleans next Sunday...Houston plays at Tennessee next Sunday.
12/14 01:39:27 ET
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