Rams' stars show up late in thrilling comeback as Ravens drop fifth straight

·3 min read

The Baltimore Ravens have now completely mastered the art of losing games in the closest, most painful ways possible.

The Los Angeles Rams, who have collected some of the biggest star power in the NFL, received huge performances from their big guns late in a thrilling comeback.

The Ravens led most of the game but were stung late by an Odell Beckham Jr. touchdown in the final minute, leading to a 20-19 Rams win and Baltimore's fifth straight loss — all by one or two points.

Matthew Stafford dug the Los Angeles Rams into a big hole with three early turnovers. In addition, the Rams showed some discord early in the game as Jalen Ramsey shoved his teammate, Taylor Rapp, in the face.

But Stafford bailed them out late with two fourth-quarter touchdown drives to pull out the game, including the connection to Beckham with 57 seconds remaining. Stafford finished 26-of-35 passing for 309 yards and two TDs, with two INTs.

The two-point try on the last TD was no good, opening the door for the Ravens to win at the gun. But a Rams defense that didn't allow an offensive touchdown all game held firm at the end thanks to a late Von Miller sack and a failed Hail Mary pass at the buzzer by Ravens QB Tyler Huntley.

Rams QB Matthew Stafford turned the ball over three times but led two late TD drives. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
Rams QB Matthew Stafford turned the ball over three times but led two late TD drives. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Huntley started in place of Lamar Jackson and made some plays against the Rams. But the Ravens' inability to finish off drives led to them settling for four Justin Tucker field goals and allowing the Rams to improve to 12-4. If the Cardinals lose Sunday afternoon, the Rams will clinch the NFC West.

The Ravens, who once were 8-3 and in first place in the AFC, now are 8-8 and almost certainly out of the playoff mix. It's John Harbaugh's first five-game losing streak ever in the NFL.

The Ravens punted on their first two possessions but led 7-0 thanks to a Chuck Clark pick-six of Matthew Stafford and a missed field goal by the Rams. Clark then picked Stafford for a second time — the fourth and fifth INTs of his 78-game career — and the subsequent Tucker field goal made it 10-0, Baltimore.

A Jordan Fuller interception of Huntley helped set up the Rams' first score. Stafford hit Cooper Kupp for a TD, the 15th time they've connected for a score this season, to cut the Ravens' lead to 10-7. But just before the half, the Ravens added another Tucker field goal to make it 13-7, having driven 51 yards in the final 53 seconds before the break.

Stafford was sacked on the Rams' first possession of the third quarter, fumbling it away to the Ravens. Tucker's third field goal of the game made it 16-7, Ravens, in the third quarter.

But the Rams were not done yet. After stopping the Ravens and getting good field position, the Rams made it a one-possession game when Sony Michel capped off a 55-yard drive with a 1-yard score to cut the lead to 16-14. The Ravens drove to the Los Angeles 2-yard line but were held out of the end zone, settling for Tucker's fourth field goal of the game and a 19-14 lead.

That's when Stafford went to work again, hitting Beckham on a clutch fourth-down catch just prior to the go-ahead touchdown. Late defensive plays by Miller and Aaron Donald helped seal the game.

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