Mandatory Credit: Photo by Butch Dill/AP/Shutterstock (13613169at) Baltimore Ravens running back Kenyan Drake, center, runs with the ball in the first half of an NFL football game against the New Orleans Saints in New Orleans Ravens Saints Football, New Orleans, United States – 07 Nov 2022
Monday Night Football Recap: Ravens 27, Saints 13
The New Orleans Saints welcomed the Baltimore Ravens into Caesars Superdome for Monday night’s matchup, hoping to replicate their Week 8 defensive effort, a clinic that saw them shut out the Las Vegas Raiders. Baltimore, fresh off ten days rest, had other ideas in the early going.
After the teams exchanged punts for most of the first quarter, it was the Ravens who found an offensive rhythm first. With Mark Andrews sidelined due to injury, Lamar Jackson found rookie tight end Isaiah Likely for a 22-yard touchdown with 80 seconds left in the first quarter.
Likely, a talented young player out of Coastal Carolina became the fifth player Jackson had connected with on the Ravens’ first two drives. New Orleans’ offense struggled early, gaining only 28 yards in the first quarter and punting on their first four possessions.
Ravens Extend Lead
The Ravens would extend their lead in the second quarter, capping off a seven-minute, 81-yard drive with a short Kenyan Drake touchdown run to make it 14-0. The Saints’ offense finally woke up in the final moments of the second quarter, pushing into Baltimore territory with seconds to go.
After a few passes targeting Chris Olave in the end zone fell incomplete, New Orleans settled for a Wil Lutz field goal at the halftime buzzer to make it 14-3. Baltimore dominated time of possession in the first half, holding onto the football for almost twenty of the first 30 minutes. New Orleans’ offensive struggles resulted in only six first downs and less than three yards per carry on the ground.
Baltimore opened the second half with another clock-draining drive, this time eating almost half of the third quarter en route to Justin Tucker’s 32-yard field goal. New Orleans managed a successful drive on their first possession of the half as well, but a sack of Andy Dalton on third down forced the Saints to settle for another Wil Lutz field goal, leaving them still trailing 17-6 near the end of the third quarter.
More Field Goals
The exchange of field goals continued into the fourth, as Justin Tucker’s 41-yarder pushed Baltimore’s lead back to 14 points with eight and a half minutes left in the fourth quarter. Needing points in a hurry, Andy Dalton would look to pass the football on the Saints’ next possession – but after Justin Houston intercepted a tipped pass, it was the Ravens who were quickly set up to put more points on the board instead.
Baltimore handed the ball to Kenyan Drake three times, easily scoring a touchdown that all but put the game away at 27-6. The Saints, in desperation mode, converted several third downs, including a strange touchdown catch by Juwan Johnson with four minutes left, a play during which the Ravens’ defense clearly felt the tight end had stepped out of bounds.
Baltimore’s offense ran out almost the entire clock from there, clinching a double-digit road win for the surging Ravens.
New Orleans entered the game having scored 24 or more points in five straight but was stifled from the start on Monday night. The impressive victory moves Baltimore to 4-1 this season away from home, and at 6-3 overall, ensures that they’ll maintain a lead over the Bengals atop the AFC North.
Next Week: Baltimore: Bye, New Orleans: at Pittsburgh