BALTIMORE – Entering Sunday’s action with identical 5-2 records, the Baltimore Ravens and Indianapolis Colts faced off at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Despite a slow start, Baltimore pulled away in the second half to secure a 24-10 victory.
The Ravens entered the day without cornerback Marlon Humphrey, who had tested positive for COVID-19, linebacker L.J. Fort, who was ruled out with an injured finger, and running back Mark Ingram, who missed his second straight week nursing an ankle injury.
On the offensive side, the team activated three-time Pro Bowl wide receiver Dez Bryant, who had not played in an NFL game since 2017.
Playing host on Sunday, Indianapolis opened the first quarter scoring with a one-yard rushing touchdown by Jonathan Taylor.
The Indianapolis score would serve as one of the few blemishes in the box score for the Ravens defense, which forced a turnover later in the quarter.
Marcus Peters continued the Ravens’ defensive streak of 21 consecutive games with a takeaway, forcing a Colts fumble. Chuck Clark recovered the Indianapolis turnover and returned the ball 65 yards for a Ravens touchdown to tie the game, 7-7.
Baltimore now has nine defensive touchdowns since the start of 2019, which marks the most in the league during that span.
“We needed a sense of urgency on defense,” said Peters. “Looking at our last two weeks, we started fast, but we didn’t finish as fast as we started.”
The Baltimore defense held the Colts to just a field goal in the second quarter, but the offense remained quiet for the Ravens, who trailed 10-7 at halftime.
As an offense, the Ravens completed just four first downs in five drives in the first half and posted only 55 total yards, marking the fewest total for Baltimore in any half with quarterback Lamar Jackson at the helm.
Opening the second half, Baltimore’s offense picked up steam in their opening drive, as Jackson led his team into the red zone. Inside the 3-yard line, though, Gus Edwards fumbled the ball, giving possession back to Indianapolis.
Baltimore recovered the ball as Peters intercepted a pass by Indianapolis quarterback Philip Rivers on the subsequent play.
Peters’ 30 career interceptions mark the most for any player in the league since his NFL debut in 2015.
Taking advantage of the takeaway, Edwards redeemed himself after the fumble from minutes earlier, diving into the endzone with just under six minutes left in the third quarter to give Baltimore a 14-10 lead.
After forcing an Indianapolis punt, Baltimore added to the lead as Jackson used his legs to rush 9 yards into the endzone, giving the Ravens a 21-10 lead early in the fourth quarter.
The touchdown continued a Baltimore streak of 31 consecutive games with at least 20 points.
To add an extra layer of insurance, kicker Justin Tucker connected on a 48-yard field goal to extend the lead to 24-10.
“In the second half, we just dialed it up,” said Jackson. “We called the plays, found guys in the right position, and just threw the ball down the field.”
Jackson finished the game completing 19 of 23 pass attempts with 170 passing yards and 58 rushing yards. Nick Boyle led the team with 46 receiving yards on four catches.
With the win, Baltimore ends a streak of losing 20 consecutive games (including the playoffs) when trailing at halftime.
Looking ahead to next week, Baltimore will travel to Foxborough, Massachusetts, for a Sunday night game against the New England Patriots at 8:20 p.m. ET. New England will be coming off short rest, with a Monday Night Football game this week against the New York Jets.