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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Matt Gay kicks 4 FGs over 50 yards, including OT winner, as Colts beat Ravens 22-19

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By NOAH TRISTER AP Sports Writer

BALTIMORE (AP) — It’s not often a kicker manages to upstage Justin Tucker.
Matt Gay did just that, lifting the Indianapolis Colts to an improbable victory in Baltimore.
Gay capped a terrific day with a 53-yard field goal in overtime, giving the Colts a 22-19 win over the Ravens on Sunday.


Gay made a record four kicks from beyond 50 yards, including a 53-yarder that tied it in the final minute of regulation. His chance in overtime didn’t come until after both teams had been stopped on fourth down near midfield.


“I was in a pretty good groove that point in time,” Gay said. “Was really just kind of in that blackout mode where I wasn’t thinking too much.”


The Ravens (2-1) wasted two overtime chances with great field position. They took over at the Indianapolis 48 after a punt and went three-and-out. Then Baltimore swarmed Zack Moss on fourth-and-1 from the Baltimore 46, stopping the Indianapolis running back and taking over the ball with 4:10 remaining.


But the Colts forced the Ravens into a fourth-and-3 situation at the Indy 47, and Lamar Jackson threw incomplete as Baltimore called in vain for a penalty on linebacker E.J. Speed, who appeared to impede receiver Zay Flowers going over the middle.


There was no flag, and the Colts (2-1) were able to drive in position for Gay’s fifth field goal of the game with 1:09 remaining.


Jackson smiled and hesitated before commenting on his last throw to Flowers.


“We had plenty of opportunities in the game to finish, but it is what it is,” Jackson said. “Fight another day.”


Gardner Minshew, playing in place of injured rookie Anthony Richardson, threw for 227 yards and a touchdown for the Colts. Moss ran for 122 yards on 30 carries.


Jackson ran for 101 yards and two TDs.


Tucker, the Baltimore star who two years ago set a record with a 66-yard field goal to win a game at Detroit, came up short from 61 with 1 second left in regulation, so the game went to overtime.


“I have nothing but respect for Justin Tucker. He’s arguably the greatest of all time,” Gay said. “To have that percentage at 10, 11 years is nothing but amazing.”


It didn’t seem like a great day for kicking thanks to the remnants of Tropical Storm Ophelia. There was significant rain before the game, although conditions seemed to improve as the day progressed and the wind didn’t look like a huge factor.


“It was a little bit more drama leading up to it, because you hear, ‘Oh it’s going to be pouring rain, it’s supposed to be windy,'” Gay said. “You’re preparing for that way, but I try not to look too much into it. You never know what you’re going to get until you get here.”


Tucker made a 50-yard field goal with 7:33 remaining in the fourth quarter to give the Ravens a one-point lead, and a late punt by Jordan Stout pinned the Colts on their 2 with 2:14 left. On third-and-long, Minshew accidentally stepped out of the back of the end zone for a safety while under heavy pressure. That made it 19-16.


But after a fair catch on the ensuing free kick, Baltimore started its drive with 2:03 on the clock, and thanks to the two-minute warning, their last remaining timeout and a Baltimore penalty, the Colts got the ball back with 1:41 left. They drove into range for Gay to tie it with 57 seconds remaining.


“He was on fire,” coach Shane Steichen said.


Safety Kyle Hamilton had three sacks for the Ravens, all in the first half. Jackson threw for 202 yards.


Jackson completed all seven of his first-half passes and his first 10 overall, and the Ravens looked on their way to an easy win at first. The star quarterback opened the scoring with an 8-yard run in the first quarter, and Baltimore was on the move again before practice squad call-up Kenyan Drake fumbled at the end of a 24-yard reception.


Then the Indianapolis defensive front began imposing its will a bit. Jackson fumbled and had to fall on the ball at his 8 on one third-down play. The Colts took the ensuing punt and tied the game when Minshew found Moss for a 17-yard TD.


Jackson fumbled again inside his 20, and this time Indianapolis recovered and kicked a field goal. The Ravens had four first-half fumbles, losing two.


The Colts led 13-7 in the third quarter before Jackson scored on a 10-yard draw to put Baltimore ahead. Gay gave Indianapolis the lead in the fourth with a 53-yard kick, but Tucker answered for the Ravens.


CAT AND MOUSE IN THE COLTS-RAVENS GAME


Gay’s first field goal of the game was much shorter but included some intrigue. On fourth-and-goal from the 7, the Colts lined up as if to go for it and the Ravens called timeout. Then Indy sent in the field-goal team, only to have the offense then rush on in a mass substitution. But that meant Baltimore had to have a chance to sub too, and the Ravens did that slowly enough that the play clock ran out and the Colts were called for delay of game.


Gay then made a 31-yard kick that put Indianapolis up 10-7.


INJURIES


Baltimore had several key players out for this game, including receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (ankle), cornerback Marlon Humphrey (foot) and two starters on the offensive line. Linebacker David Ojabo left with an early ankle injury and running back Gus Edwards was evaluated for a concussion.


UP NEXT


Colts: Host the Los Angeles Rams next Sunday.
Ravens: Visit the Cleveland Browns on Sunday.


Via Associated Press. Multi-media staff writer from the Indianapolis Recorder Noral Parham III contributed to this report. For more sports news from the Indianapolis Recorder, click here.

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