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(Photo Cred: Opta Analyst website)

CHIEFS vs. RAVENS | AFC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME

The Baltimore Ravens and the Kansas City Chiefs would kick off the NFL Championship round of the playoffs today. The Chiefs (11-6) are the defending Super Bowl Champions and beat the Buffalo Bills last week to advance. The Ravens (13-4) are back in the AFC Championship game behind MVP candidate Lamar Jackson. Their win against the Houston Texans last week punched their ticket to this round.

FIRST QUARTER HIGLIGHTS

Baltimore would receive the ball to start the game but would be forced to punt after a three-and-out. Kansas City would take over and begin their first drive on offense. Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes would find TE Travis Kelce on a few plays while RB Isiah Pacheco carried the team into the red zone with some big runs. The Chiefs would cap off the drive with a 19 yard touchdown pass to Kelce. This gave them an early 7-0 lead.

The Ravens would attempt to match their score with the next possession. QB Lamar Jackson would use his arm and legs to move Baltimore down the field quickly. He would run for a big 21 yard scamper on a fourth down play that saved the drive. Jackson threw for over 60 yards on the drive including a 30 yard pass to Zay Flowers for a touchdown.

With the score tied at 7 at the end of the first quarter, the Chiefs would get into Baltimore territory after some good passes from Mahomes to WR Rahsee Rice.

SECOND QUARTER HIGHLIGHTS

The Chiefs moved into the red zone behind a great catch from Kelce with Mahomes taking a big hit on defense. Mahomes used his legs as well as his arm to get Kansas City at first and goal. They finished the 16 play drive with Pacheco running in for a touchdown. The Ravens defense looked shaky and nervous as they fell behind 14-7.

The Ravens offense would turn the ball over on a fumble from Jackson which set up Kansas City at the 40 yard line. The Chiefs would use the run game to try to add to their lead. After Pacheco was stopped on a fourth down drive however, Baltimore would take the ball back. Jackson would lead his team down the field with a miraculous 13 yard pass to himself off a deflected pass. Despite his heroics, the Chiefs defense forced them to punt.

Defense was the focus from here on out. Baltimore’s defense began to come alive after stopping the Chiefs quickly on offense. Stalled drives from both teams would find the Chiefs with the ball late in the second quarter. Things got chippy as two costly penalties against Baltimore would get Kansas City going. The Chiefs offense would sputter as two penalties (one of them nullified a touchdown score) made them settle for a field goal to take a 17-7 lead into halftime.

AFTER THE BREAK

The Chiefs would receive the ball to start the third quarter. Both the Ravens and Chiefs defense would force three-and-outs resulting in punts. Defense continued to take control of the game as neither team could capitalize on offense. The Ravens defense would come alive after an impromptu apperance by Terelle Suggs would force the Chiefs to punt again late in the third quarter.

The Ravens offense found momentum late in the third quarter. Jackson would find Flowers for a 54 yard pass and another 11 yard pass to move them into the red zone to end the quarter. The Ravens would turn the ball over again, this time on a Zay Flowers fumble in the end zone recovered by the Chiefs. This resulted in Kansas City getting the ball back.

FOURTH QUARTER HIGHLIGHTS

Still leading by 10, Mahomes got to work quickly connecting with Kelce to start their first drive of the fourth quarter. The Ravens defense however had other plans as they forced the fourth punt from the Chiefs of the half. The Ravens moved down on the field on a 10 play drive that included a big pass from Jackson to WR Nelson Agholor. Two plays later, Jackson was intercepted by Deon Bush which gave the Chiefs the ball back.

Ravens QB Lamar Jackson had two turnovers (Int, Fumble) in todays game (Photo Cred: The Spun website)
Ravens QB Lamar Jackson had two turnovers (Int, Fumble) in todays game (Photo Cred: The Spun website)

PENALTIES COST THE RAVENS

Baltimore would have one more chance to score to close the gap. They would get to the Chiefs’ 25 yard line before being forced to kick a field goal to make the score 17-10. Penalties hurt the Ravens all game as their 8th one of the game helped fuel the Chiefs next drive. Mahomes found Marques Valdez-Scantling for a 22 yard pass to get to the two minute warning.

The Ravens found themselves with no timeouts remaining in the game. This would allow Mahomes to just kneel on the ball to run out the clock. Jackson sat on the sideline dejected as his team would only watch as Kansas City would win the AFC Championship.

Chiefs Patrick Mahomes & Travis Kelce
(Photo Cred: Arrowhead Pride)

WHAT HAPPENS NEXT

This win allows the Chiefs to move on to the Super Bowl in two weeks. This is the 4th time they have made the Super Bowl in the past 5 seasons. The Ravens season comes to an end with many of their fans wondering what happened to their momentum coming into this game.

The Chiefs will take on the winner of the NFC Championship game between the San Francisco 49ers and Detroit Lions later this evening. What do you think of the Chiefs win? Let us know down in the comments below.

#GetSOM via @TenthLetterMedia & click here for more sports stories.

Tags : AFC Championship GameBaltimore RavensKansas City ChiefsLamar JacksonNFLPatrick MahomesStraight Official MagazineStraightofficial.comTenthLetterMediaTravis Kelce
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