Baltimore Ravens at Detroit Lions 12/16/13 NFL Score, Recap, News and Notes
Final Score: Baltimore Ravens 18, Detroit Lions 16
December 16, 2013
The Week 15 edition of “Monday Night Football” was a pretty big deal as far as playoff positioning. Both the Ravens and the Lions needed a win to stay in the postseason race and remain in control of their own destinies. These two teams don’t see each other very often, so it was tough predicting what to expect during the game. In the end, we were treated to a hard-hitting matchup that was pretty entertaining to watch and competitive to the very end.
Let’s take a look at some of the key players and statistics from the game so we can see why things played out the way they did. Afterward, we’ll take a glance forward to Week 16 to see what’s in store for each team’s immediate future.
What Happened: The Lions’ start was promising enough, as they were able to march down the field for the first score of the game and the only score of the first quarter--a 14-yard TD run by Reggie Bush. In the second quarter, the Ravens’ kicker Justin Tucker got to work, nailing three field goals to put Baltimore up 9-7 at halftime. Detroit suffered a handful of miscues that aided the Ravens and stopped their own drives cold, including a pair of costly penalties and two huge dropped passes by star WR Calvin Johnson.
After the break, Tucker was at it again, nailing a 49-yard field goal to extend the lead. Detroit’s David Akers cut into the deficit with a score of his own, and it was 12-10 after three.
In the fourth quarter, Tucker kicked his fifth field goal, but the Lions were able to respond with a TD on a 14-yard pass from Matthew Stafford to Joseph Fauria. The two-point conversion would fail--and prove very costly. The Lions had only a one-point edge at 16-15.
On the ensuing Ravens drive, they were stopped on third down and trotted Tucker out for a 61-yard field goal try. He made it, and gave Baltimore an 18-16 edge. Stafford was picked off to end the game with a huge Ravens win.
With the victory, Baltimore retakes the final Wild Card spot in the AFC and controls their own destiny once again at 8-6. As for 7-7 Detroit, they fall out of the NFC North lead and are behind both the Bears and the Packers. They’ll need to win out and get some help in order to make the playoffs.
Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports
The Stars: It’s pretty obvious who is the star here. Tucker is now the franchise record-holder with his 61-yard boot and was the only standout in an otherwise “blah” offensive game consumed by decent defensive efforts on both sides and a few head-slapping penalties that would turn the tide for the opposition.
Reggie Bush (101 total yards, TD) and Calvin Johnson (six receptions, 98 yards) were the lone standouts for Detroit.
The Goats: The Lions are choking away their playoff chances. The NFC North was theirs for the taking, and they responded by losing four of their last five games. Stafford has 12 turnovers in that span, including three picks against the Ravens. His No. 1 receiver Johnson didn’t help matters, as his drops could have made the difference in the game.
Injuries: Flacco suffered a pretty ugly-looking hit in the fourth quarter, but he ended up being okay. The team may end up doing some tests on his knee to make sure everything’s good, though.
Detroit came out relatively healthy, but was missing Chris Houston and Darius Slay.
Outlook: Looking ahead to Week 16, both teams have late afternoon home games on Sunday. The Lions will welcome the reeling Giants (December 22, 4:05 PM ET on FOX) while the Ravens will host the Patriots (December 22, 4:25 PM ET on CBS).
For the latest article updates, follow Andrew on Twitter @SCPAndrew.