Ravens Beat Lions 44-20, Improve Playoff Chances

posted by MH -

The Baltimore Ravens came out with one of their strongest performances of the year against the Detroit Lions to win 44-20 and improve to 7-5 on the season and improve their chances of making the playoffs.

Ravens QB Joe Flacco had a strong performance, throwing for 269 yards and two touchdowns in perhaps his best game of the season. Running back Alex Collins had two rushing touchdowns of his own, both coming in a decisive fourth quarter.

The Ravens took command of the game in the first half behind touchdown passes to Benjamin Watson and Patrick Ricard and a pair of Justin Tucker field goals.

The Lions bounced back from a 20-0 deficit with unanswered two touchdowns of their own behind Theo Riddick and Tion Green runs to make it a 20-13 game.

Alex Collins put the Ravens ahead by two scores early in the fourth quarter with a 7-yard sprint to the sideline and end zone, but the Lions stayed within breathing distance when Matthew Stafford flipped a 1-yard pass to Nick Bellore off play action.

From there, the Ravens put the game out of reach. Justin Tucker made a routine 51-yard field goal to put the Ravens ahead 30-20. On the Lions next possession, Stafford was intercepted on a rollout pass in which he injured his hand. Alex Collins later danced his way into the end zone from 6 yards out. An to top it off, Ravens safety Eric Weddle picked off Lions backup QB Jake Rudock and took it to the house.

Despite the strong play by the Ravens, the injury bug bit the team once again. Cornerback Jimmy Smith, regarded as one of the top defensive players in the league, inured his achilles and is likely out for the remainder of the season. Furthermore, Smith has been suspended by the NFL for four games in violation of the league's policy on performance enhancing substances.

The Ravens face off against their rival, and AFC North leader Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday Night Football in Week 14 in Pittsburgh.

Top Photo Credit: Rob Carr/Getty Images

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