With the Ravens trailing by three points and facing a 4th-and-29 at their own 37-yard line with 1:59 to play in the game, quarterback Joe Flacco looked downfield and didn’t see anything he liked. He also didn’t want to throw a Hail Mary, so he dropped the ball off to Ray Rice in the right flat and then watched the Pro Bowl running back make one of the more memorable plays in several seasons for the Ravens.
Ray Rice took a check down from Joe Flacco and weaved around countless Chargers defenders, zig-zagging for a gain of exactly 29 yards and a first down. The play was challenged by the replay official and the ball was moved slightly back, but it was still enough for a first down. Justin Tucker would kick a game-tying field goal to send the game into overtime, and eventually kicked the game winner as well as the Ravens beat the Chargers 16-13.
What’s inconceivable is to actually convert fourth-and-29 the way the Ravens did here Sunday, with the game absolutely on the line, with a dump-off, give-up pass from Joe Flacco that tailback Ray Rice took through the Chargers’ bewildered defense for 30 — that’s right, thirty — yards. It led to a last-second field goal that turned the game into a 13-13 tie and eventually ended with another Justin Tucker field goal in overtime that gave Baltimore a 16-13 win.
What happened was a football miracle. The visiting Baltimore Ravens had to convert a fourth-and-29 – fourth-and-29! – to beat the Chargers. And the Ravens did exactly that, gleefully skipping town with a 16-13 overtime victory.