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Ravens outlast Browns, take 10th straight from Cleveland

The SportsXchange

CLEVELAND -- The Ravens did what they've done during coach John Harbaugh's tenure in Baltimore. Enough to leave Cleveland with a victory, this time 25-15 to give Harbaugh a perfect 10-0 record against the Browns.

Baltimore jumped out to a quick lead Sunday, lost it, then grabbed it back with less than five minutes left hold onto the game and first place in the AFC North.

Joe Flacco threw a 19-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Torrey Smith, who spun past cornerback Joe Haden at the 15 to score with 4:26 left. Flacco threw a two-point conversion to Anquan Boldin. Justin Tucker tacked on a 43-yard field goal with 2:49 left as the Ravens raised their record to 6-2.

"It was all me," Smith said. "They prefer us to keep going across the middle, but I knew looking at the coverage, but I knew looking at the coverage that if I caught the ball I would be one-on-one outside. If I took a good step in, he would have to try to make a tackle going inside out. It ended up working."

The Browns are 2-7 and last beat the Ravens in 2007.

"We were playing well and had the lead," linebacker D'Qwell Jackson said. "Defensively, we didn't hold up our end of the bargain."

The Browns edged ahead, 15-14, on a 41-yard field goal by Phil Dawson with 8:48 to play. It was Dawson's fifth field goal of the game.

Two plays before the field goal, a touchdown pass from Brandon Weeden to Josh Gordon was erased by an illegal formation penalty on the Browns.

"We were scoring in the red zone in the beginning of the season and now we're not," said running back Trent Richardson after rushing for 105 yards. "It's very disappointing. We're executing way better outside the red zone. Everybody has to come together and do their jobs. We have to be accountable."

The Ravens led, 14-0, before the Browns made their first first down. The Cleveland defense settled down after that and the Browns cut the lead to 14-9 with three seconds left in the first half on Dawson's third field goal.

When the Browns played in Baltimore in September, they held Ray Rice to 49 yards rushing in a game the Ravens won, 23-16. Race had 66 yards by halftime Sunday, including an eight-yard run for a touchdown to cap off Baltimore's first drive.

The Ravens took a 14-0 on their next possession with a 12-play, 66-yard drive. Bernard Pierce finished it off with a 12 yard-run around the left side. He ran through the grasp of defensive tackle Phil Taylor on the way to the end zone.

"I went through the week practicing hard as ever," Pierce said. "The coaches did a great job of play-calling, especially with the run action."

During the game in Baltimore, Flacco spent much of the day testing the Browns secondary with deep throws. He used a different strategy on both touchdown drives by throwing in front of the linebackers. Anquan Boldin caught a total of four passes in the first two touchdown drives for 36 yards.

NOTES: Ravens DT Haloti Ngata missed practice Thursday and Friday with knee and shoulder injuries, but started Sunday's game. ... Browns DT Ahtyba Rubin was inactive for the third time in four games because of a calf injury. ... Browns DT Phil Taylor played and started after missing the first eight games with a torn pectoral muscle.
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