Joe Flacco scores touchdown, Ravens lead Browns 10-7

Lynette Rowe
December 18, 2017

Baltimore scored a field goal on the open drive.

Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco (5) scores a touchdown during the second quarter against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium.

Get prep sports breaking news alerts from the Gwinnett Daily Post staff delivered to your email. The Ravens are now 8-6 and the playoffs are a very realistic goal.

The Ravens marched to another win, but Jeremy Maclin left the game with a knee injury, leaving a wide receiver group of Mike Wallace ... and who? They rank #1 in run defense DVOA, they are fifth in yards per game (96.0), and first in yards per carry (3.3).

The Ravens, who entered the game ranked second in turnover-margin at plus-13, came up with nine turnovers in two games against the Browns.

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Later in the drive, the Ravens again found themselves in a third and goal, but instead of Collins getting the call, Flacco walked in a quarterback keeper. That made the task tough enough for struggling Browns quarterback DeShone Kizer, and it directly led to a touchdown when Za'Darius Smith blew past tackle Spencer Drango and strip-sacked Kizer in the end zone. Cornerback Brandon Carr ended any thoughts of a Browns comeback when he intercepted Kizer in the end zone early in the fourth quarter.

Linebacker Terrell Suggs was responsible for the pressure that forced Kizer to overthrow his target, allowing an easy interception for safety Eric Weddle.

Hazel has been limited at practice on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday due to the injury, according to the injury report the Browns submitted to the National Football League, and his status is listed as "questionable" for Sunday's game.

The Ravens answered quickly. It was Flacco's first rushing touchdowns this season. Brandon Williams recovered for a touchdown and a 24-10 third-quarter lead. It didn't matter because Baltimore needed 37 seconds and 3 plays to extend their advantage to 17-7 after Flacco hit tight end Benjamin Watson for a 33-yard touchdown with:59 to play.

The Ravens were driving down the field and looked poised to increase their lead.

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