The Ravens finally found a rhythm, moving the ball from their own 20 to the Broncos’ 4 late in the second quarter.
It seemed that all of a sudden Joe Flacco and the Baltimore offense had gotten itself together after converting just one first down on its first five possessions.
And then Flacco got a little greedy. Looking for Anquan Boldin just across the goal line on the Denver side, cornerback Chris Harris jumped in front of the wideout, picked off the pass and raced 98 yards down the sideline for a touchdown.
In position to surprisingly send the game into halftime 10-7, the Ravens instead trail 17-0 - a score far more representative of what’s taken place at M&T Bank Stadium so far.
Flacco was able to catch Harris inside the Ravens’ 10, but was only able to send him stumbling into the end zone. All Flacco could do was lay facedown on the turf for a few extra moments, lamenting his second turnover of the contest. Both of which have led to Broncos points.
The Ravens have been outgained 173-119 and Denver has 11 first downs to Baltimore’s four. Flacco is just 7-for-15 for 78 yards.
Peyton Manning isn’t doing much better yards-wise with 97 through the air, but he has completed 13 of 20 attempts. Knowshon Moreno has been the star of the game so far with 74 rushing yards on 13 carries.
Ray Rice has just 23 yards on seven carries for the Ravens. Albert McClellan and Pernell McPhee each have sacks for Baltimore, with McClellan’s being the first of his career.
Update: Justin Tucker has put the Ravens on the scoreboard with a 45-yard field goal on the first drive of the second half, cutting the Broncos’ lead to 17-3.
Jacoby Jones set it up by returning the first kickoff of the third quarter 50 yards to the Ravens’ 44. Baltimore had a chance to keep the drive going on a nice catch by Torrey Smith inside the 10-yard line. But Smith landed out of bounds before he could get two feet down. The Ravens challenged, but the call was upheld and Baltimore had to settle for a field goal.
Strangely, on the ensuing kickoff, Denver fumbled and Chris Johnson of the Ravens appeared to recover inbounds. The officials ruled that it was recovered out of bounds and gave the ball to the Broncos, but Baltimore didn’t challenge. Guess the Ravens didn’t want to lose another timeout.
Update II: The Broncos extended their lead in a hurry. Manning needed just five plays and 2:25 to move Denver 83 yards for another score.
His 51-yard touchdown pass to Eric Decker, whose little stutter beat cornerback Cary Williams, made it 24-3 Denver.
Update III: The Broncos have just upped their lead to 31-3 on a 6-yard touchdown run by Moreno, who has now run for 102 yards and a score.
Short drive was all Denver needed after a long punt return - four plays, 39 yards in 1:16.