Ravens never trail in blowing past Saints, 27-13
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - Playing before their biggest national audience of the season, the Saints produced one of their poorest performances.
Baltimore quarterback Lamar Jackson and a stifling Ravens defense powered the AFC North leaders to a relatively easy 27-13 victory over the Saints in their Monday Night Football clash at Caesars Superdome.
Kenyan Drake rushed for two touchdowns and linebacker Justin Houston had 2 1/2 sacks and an interception as the Ravens (6-3) never trailed against the Saints (3-6).
Jackson opened the scoring late in the first quarter, finding tight end Isaiah Likely with a 24-yard touchdown strike to the right corner of the end zone. It was the 100th career touchdown pass of Jackson’s career and put the Ravens up 7-0 with 1:29 left in the first.
Drake’s 1-yard touchdown plunge with 2:05 left in the second quarter capped a 12-play, 81-yard scoring drive for Baltimore that chewed 7:05 off the clock. With kicker Justin Tucker’s second extra point of the night, the Ravens led the Saints, 14-0.
The Saints’ last drive before halftime stalled in the red zone, after quarterback Andy Dalton overthrew an open Marquez Callaway in the end zone on first down from the Baltimore 15. Kicker Wil Lutz put New Orleans on the board with a 33-yard field goal that ended the first half, with the Saints trailing 14-3.
Baltimore outgained the Saints in the first half, 175-100.
The Ravens extended their lead back to two touchdowns at 17-3, when Tucker knocked through a 32-yard field goal with 8:29 to play in the third quarter.
Lutz brought the Saints back within 17-6 with a 37-yard field goal with 1:30 left in the third. But the Ravens drove to the Saints’ 23-yard line to set up a 41-yard kick from Tucker with 8:36 left in the game, extending the lead back to 20-6.
The backbreaker for the Saints came on the first play after the ensuing kickoff, when Dalton was intercepted by Houston. The turnover set up the Ravens at the Saints’ 17-yard line, and they punched in for a touchdown on the third of three consecutive carries by Drake. Tucker’s extra point gave Baltimore an insurmountable 27-6 lead.
The Saints showed a twitch of life when Dalton connected with tight end Juwan Johnson on a 41-yard touchdown completion down the right sideline with 4:22 left to play. Lutz’s extra point cut the deficit to 27-13.
For the game, the Ravens outgained the Saints, 319-243. New Orleans converted just 3 of 11 third downs.
The Saints play their next game Sunday at Pittsburgh, facing the 2-6 Steelers at noon on Fox 8.
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