|Date of game: 10/19/2014
Recap: Baltimore vs. Atlanta
Baltimore, MD (SportsNetwork.com) - Joe Flacco threw for 258 yards and two touchdowns to back a strong defensive effort as the Baltimore Ravens defeated the Atlanta Falcons, 29-7, on Sunday.
Flacco, coming off a five-touchdown performance against Tampa Bay last week, completed 16-of-25 passes with two interceptions, Torrey Smith had three catches for 81 yards and a score and Owen Daniels also hauled in a TD pass for the Ravens (5-2), who registered at least five sacks for a second consecutive week.
"That's a hard-fought game and a big win," Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said. "That's a good football team that came in here and our guys played really well."
Justin Forsett ran for 95 yards on 23 carries and Bernard Pierce plunged into the end zone from a yard out to give the Ravens their third straight win at home.
Matt Ryan went 29-of-44 for 228 yards and a touchdown and Roddy White made nine grabs for 100 yards and a score for Atlanta (2-5), which lost its fourth straight game overall and sixth in a row away from home.
"It's our job to stop them on defense and it's our job to score points," Falcons head coach Mike Smith said. "They scored more points than us today, that's my only concern."
The Falcons went 90 yards in 10 plays to make it a 20-7 game halfway through the fourth. Ryan eluded a sack, rolled out to his right and hit White across the middle for a 21-yard pickup on third down. Devin Hester's 4-yard catch compounded with a facemask penalty placed the Falcons at the Ravens' 4 and Ryan found a tightly-covered White in the left corner of the end zone.
Atlanta got the ball back at its own 10 after a Baltimore punt, but Terrell Suggs crashed through the middle and sacked Ryan in the end zone for a safety with 3:44 remaining and Flacco hit Smith in stride with a 39-yard TD pass just after the two-minute warning to seal the win.
On Baltimore's opening drive, Robert Alford's pass interference penalty on Smith moved the Ravens up 36 yards to the Falcons' 6. Three plays later, Flacco hit Daniels over the middle from the 5-yard line for an early score.
After Atlanta punted on its first two drives, it moved the ball deep into Ravens territory. Pernell McPhee sacked Ryan, knocking the ball loose, and Elvis Dumervil recovered it at the Baltimore 25 with under five minutes to play in the first.
Alford made up for his earlier pass interference penalty by picking off Flacco in the end zone to start the second quarter, but Baltimore added to its lead late in the period.
Flacco rolled out to his left and found Smith cutting toward the left side of the field, bringing the Ravens 20 yards to the 1-yard line. Pierce powered his way up the middle on the next play to make it a 14-0 game with 2:38 left in second.
The Falcons were forced to punt after going three-and-out yet again late in the first half. Jacoby Jones, however, muffed Matt Bosher's 49-yard punt and Eric Weems recovered it at the Ravens' 37. Matt Bryant's 57-yard field goal attempt was just short, hitting the crossbar with 37 seconds to play.
Baltimore responded by moving quickly down the field on Daniels' 11-yard gain and Smith's 22-yard grab before Justin Tucker split the upright from 38 yards out to give the Ravens a 17-0 lead heading into the half.
Steve Smith caught a short pass on the left side and raced across the middle of the field to Atlanta's 28 on a 49-yard gain, leading to Tucker's 38-yard field goal on the opening drive of the second half.
On the ensuing drive, White's 15-yard catch to Baltimore's 35 represented Atlanta's first third-down conversion of the game. Ryan was sacked for a 12- yard loss after the Falcons elected to go for it on 4th-and-7.
Flacco then moved his team 40 yards down the field, but was intercepted again by Alford, who made a leaping catch in the end zone and returned it 21 yards. Steve Smith's personal foul penalty after the play moved the Falcons to their 35.
Hester's 20-yard catch sent the Falcons across midfield, but their drive ended on fourth down yet again as Devonta Freeman was stopped a yard short of a first down, resulting in a turnover on downs at the Ravens' 33 to end the third quarter.Game Notes
Flacco improved to 13-1 against NFC opponents at home ... The Falcons haven't
won a road game since last Dec. 1 at Buffalo ... Atlanta was held to a season-
low 254 yards of offense ... White caught his 58th career TD pass, surpassing
Terance Mathis for the most in team history ... The Ravens opened the season
5-2 for the fourth time under Harbaugh ... Baltimore is now 5-0 when
leading at halftime this season ... The Falcons had just 61 yards of total
offense in the first half, matching the amount of the yards that they were
penalized ... Alford recorded his first career multi-interception game ...
Baltimore's last safety came against Philadelphia on Nov. 23, 2008 ...
Ravens long snapper Morgan Cox left the game after tearing his right ACL in
the fourth quarter.