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Baltimore Ravens 34, Minnesota Vikings 31 (OT): Vikings squander multiple opportunities in loss

The Vikings had their chances, but it was not to be

NFL: Minnesota Vikings at Baltimore Ravens Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

The Minnesota Vikings had won 42 consecutive games where they entered the fourth quarter with a lead. The streak was going to end eventually, and it ended today against the Baltimore Ravens.

Justin Tucker connected on a 36-yd field goal in overtime to propel the Ravens to a 34-31 victory over the Vikings in Week 9 action at M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore.

The home team got on the board first in this one, as Justin Tucker connected on a 37-yard field goal to make it 3-0 just about five minutes into the contest. Minnesota got the game’s first touchdown on the ensuing possession, as Kirk Cousins found a wide-open Justin Jefferson for a big 50-yard touchdown pass to make it 7-3 in favor of Minnesota with 8:32 remaining in the first quarter.

Dalvin Cook made a huge play on the next drive with a 66-yard run on 3rd-and-1 to put the Vikings into Baltimore’s red zone.

The Vikings eventually got the ball into the end zone after a pass interference penalty negated what would have been a fourth-down stop for the Ravens. Kirk Cousins took the ball over the top of the pile for a 1-yard score, and less than two minutes into the second quarter it was 14-3, Vikings.

Just after the two-minute warning, the Vikings generated another turnover, as rookie Camryn Bynum. . .starting today for Harrison Smith. . .made a great diving interception of Lamar Jackson to set the Vikings up in the Baltimore red zone.

The Vikings could only manage a field goal following the interception, with Greg Joseph connecting from 36 yards out to make the score 17-3.

Baltimore finally got into the end zone right at the end of the first half on a 5-yard pass from Lamar Jackson to Devonta Freeman. The play was set up by a 42-yard pass interference penalty on Xavier Woods to move the ball deep into Minnesota territory. That made the score 17-10 going into the locker room at halftime.

The Vikings added to their lead immediately to start the second half, courtesy of rookie Kene Nwangwu. He took the second half kickoff and took it all the way back, 98 yards for a touchdown. That put the Vikings’ lead back to two touchdowns at 24-10 just 13 seconds into the third quarter.

Baltimore answered with a touchdown of their own, with Jackson finding fullback Patrick Ricard on a 4th-and-goal from the 1-yard line to cut the Minnesota lead to 24-17. It looked like the Vikings had gone three-and-out on their next drive, but they executed a fake punt to pick up the necessary yards.

The drive still led to a punt, but at least that was a nice highlight.

On their next possession, the Ravens put together an 18-minute drive that took up over 10 minutes of the game clock and put the ball in the end zone, courtesy of a 5-yard pass from Jackson to Devin Duvernay. Tucker was good on the extra point, and with just over nine minutes remaining in the game the score was tied at 24-24.

The Vikings’ offense then proceeded to go three-and-out, and the Ravens took advantage of a tired Minnesota defense to take their first lead of the game. This time, it was the fossilized husk of Le’Veon Bell finding the end zone, as he went over from a yard out to give the Ravens a 31-24 lead with just 3:29 remaining.

Minnesota took the ensuing possession and pushed down to the Baltimore 16-yard line thanks to a long catch by C.J. Ham and a long run by Dalvin Cook. The Vikings then converted on a pass from Cousins to Jefferson to set up first-and-goal. Two plays later, Cousins found Adam Thielen for a 1-yard score and things were once again tied at 31-31.

Baltimore got an opportunity to win it on the final possession, but the Vikings’ defense got the stop they needed and Minnesota took a game to overtime for the third time this season. The Ravens won the overtime coin toss and took the ball first, and they marched all the way down the field with little resistance. . .until Anthony Barr tipped a pass from Jackson to himself for an interception!

And the Vikings managed to turn that drive into a three-and-out, punting the ball back to the Ravens once again. The Vikings got one stop in overtime, but they were unable to get a second, as the NFL’s best kicker buried a 36-yard field goal from the left hash to give the Ravens the victory.

The Vikings fall to 3-5 on the season and will make another long road trip against a tough opponent next week as they travel to the west coast to take on the Los Angeles Chargers.

The Vikings lose a tough one on the road at M&T Bank Stadium, falling 34-31 to the Baltimore Ravens in overtime. Thank you to everybody that got their coverage of this week’s game right here at The Daily Norseman!