Jaguars shut down Ravens, win 12-7 in prime timeBy MARK LONG, AP Sports Writer Tuesday, Oct 25, 2011
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP)—The running back had little room. The quarterback had little time. The receivers had little chance.
The Baltimore Ravens had seen this before. Just not from this perspective.
The Ravens found themselves on the wrong side of a defensive masterpiece Monday night at Jacksonville.
Maurice Jones-Drew(notes) ran for 105 yards, Josh Scobee(notes) kicked four field goals and the Jaguars used their best defensive effort in seven years to beat Baltimore 12-7 and snap a five-game slide.
The victory could be a turning point for a young team trying to gain confidence after losing eight of its previous nine games. Instead of talk about coach Jack Del Rio’s job security, the Jaguars (2-5) got back in the mix in the wide-open AFC South.
“We knew this was an opportunity to right things and gain a little respect,” Del Rio said.
They relied on Jones-Drew and the defense to get it done.
Jacksonville didn’t allow a first down until the 5:26 mark of the third quarter, a mix of stout defense and inept offense. Flacco finally got the Ravens (4-2) on the scoreboard with a little more than two minutes remaining. He capped a 90-yard drive with a 5-yard touchdown pass to Boldin.
The Ravens failed to recover an onside kick when the ball bounced inches short of going the required 10 yards. Scobee followed with his third field goal of at least 50 yards, tying an NFL record held by many.
“They basically beat us with their defense,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. “I don’t think it was any one thing. It was a lack of execution. It’s almost as bad as you can play on offense.”
The Jaguars set a franchise record by allowing only 16 yards in the first half, including 1 yard passing by Flacco.
“We need to make sure when we’re not on our ‘A’ game, we’re not this,” said Flacco, who completed 21 of 38 passes for 137 yards.
Baltimore finally got a first down on its 28th play of the game when Rice broke off a 12-yard run. That was only the second play longer than 10 yards for the Ravens.
“We were confident about this game,” Jaguars defensive tackle Terrance Knighton(notes) said. “We knew we had to outplay them. The difference between this and the other weeks is that we started fast. Our defense is capable of that. That’s why we hold ourselves to a high standard. We just needed to taste victory. Now that we have, we’re going to keep it rolling.”
The Jaguars spent more than $100 million to rebuild their defense in the offseason. The unit has been one of the team’s bright spots, but Monday night’s performance was Jacksonville’s best defensive showing since holding Houston to 126 yards in December 2004.
Flacco was sacked three times and actually caught a pass in what summed up Baltimore’s night. Jeremy Mincey(notes) batted Flacco’s pass back into the quarterback’s arm. He ran toward the left sideline before sliding for an 8-yard loss.
Rice ran eight times for 28 yards.
Jones-Drew finished with 30 carries, the third time he has rushed that many times in his six-year career.
Jacksonville needed every yard and point it could muster, and the NFL’s worst offense put the game on Jones-Drew’s shoulders. He ran mostly right into the teeth of Baltimore’s revered defense.
“It finally feels good to win one after all those losses,” said Jones-Drew, the first player to run for 100 yards against the Ravens since last December. “It was nice to show the world what we’re about. We beat a very good team.”