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How did the Baltimore Ravens go from the best team to the worst in closing games in the NFL?

Once considered unbeatable with a lead of 17 points or more, the Ravens have already blown two games with that lead in four weeks this regular season.

OWINGS MILLS — A day after the disheartening 23-20 loss to the Buffalo Billsthe head coach of the Baltimore Ravens, John Harbaughif he was worried about how two second-half blowouts might affect his team’s mindset going forward.

“Well, we have an in-house team of psychologists, the Wear. Trishand she’s doing a good job,” he replied. Harbaugh this monday. “So I’m going to let her worry about that and we’ll worry about football because we’ve got some tough guys … and our guys are going to think they’re going to win at the next stop. “

From 2008 to the current season, the Crows They were the best of the NFL when it comes to sealing victories, winning 61 games in a row under the command of Harbaugh when they had a minimum advantage of 17 points. The team of Baltimore the fourth-longest streak matched by a head coach in that category to begin his career during the era of Super Bowl, according to data from the Elias sports bureau. The Steelers added 58 consecutive victories from 2008 to the current season and the chain of Mike Tomlin remains active with 64 games.

Now suddenly the Crows is listed as the worst in the NFL when it comes to securing games, after having a lead of 21 points against the Miami Dolphins in Week 2, and another 17-pointer against the Bills on Sunday. Baltimore was outscored 43-9 in the fourth quarter.

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the field marshal Lamar Jackson and his offense struggled to sustain rallies after halftime; while the defense struggles to get the opponents off the field.

“It’s only the fourth week,” he said. Jackson. “I don’t see it as if we had a disappointing season. The boys have just regained their health, and I feel that we will reach our best level at the right time.”

Here are three reasons why Crows They couldn’t close out the games like in the past:

Deficiencies in the ground game

Baltimore he earned a reputation for imposing his will late in games thanks to a blistering offensive line and characterful running backs. The Crows they made double-digit sets of plays that ate up large chunks of time on the game clock. The teams could not come back Baltimoresimply because they did not have the ball in their possession.

Between 2008 and 2021, the runners of the Crows led the NFL with 6,378 yards in the fourth quarter. This year, Baltimore They didn’t have the same level of productivity on the floor in the second half, and they didn’t show the same belief. The corridors of Baltimore (JK Dobbins, Justice Hill, Mike Davis y Kenyan Dragons) barely accounted for 45 yards in the fourth quarter. As a result, Crows they got the ball 13 times in the final stretch, fifth-worst record in the league.

“We can’t go out in the second half without moving the ball five yards,” says the Los Angeles offense. Ravens, Morgan Moses. “When you come out in the second half and you have the ball first, you have to move it, you have to make that defense feel you, and we didn’t do that.”

Harbaugh instilled some optimism by announcing that the corridor Gus Edwards (knee) will start training this week. Edwardscurrently on the disabled list, rushed for 708 yards in the fourth quarter, fourth-best production in the NFL between 2018 and 2020.

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Less effective quarterback play

In most respects, Jackson He played better than his 2019 season, which earned him the award NFL Most Valuable Player… except in the latter parts of matches. This Sunday he could not make contact with a Devin Duvernay open in the right corner of the goal on fourth down, threw for an interception with 4:09 left on the clock.

The QBR of Jackson in the fourth quarter (24.3) he ranks 28th in the league, among players of the caliber of Mitch Trubisky, Baker Mayfield and Mac Jones,

“I feel we should execute,” he said. Jackson about the offensive problems of the Crows In the second half. “I think we had some chances to keep the series alive on the field, but we have to execute. We have to do a better job and then we will succeed.”

In its first four seasons, Jackson he completed 63.3 percent of his passes in the fourth quarter and scored 20 touchdowns and six interceptions. In this campaign, Jackson he’s connected on 59.4 percent of his passes in the fourth quarter, has no touchdown passes and has three interceptions.

Remove opponents from the playing field

For many years, Crows relied on big-name players to make plays in high-pressure moments: either Ray Lewis with an impact through the middle, Ed Reed with an interception or a sack Terrell suggests. This season, the missteps of Baltimore in the fourth quarter, they included missed tackles, missed assignments and interceptions that eventually got out of hand.

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For the third time in fourth quarters this year, opposing quarterbacks completed 9 of 12 passes (75 percent) for 186 yards (73 more than any other team). They threw four touchdowns and an interception, along with a sack.

Between 2008 and 2021 the Crows they had twice as many sacks (54) as TD passes allowed (27) on third downs in the fourth quarter.

“When we get plays that we need to capitalize on, we need to capitalize. It’s that simple,” the Los Angeles inside linebacker said. Ravens, Patrick Queen. “They [la ofensiva] didn’t get the fourth chance. We have to go on the defensive and stop them… that’s our job. When we are at the end of the game, we have to work harder”.

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