Saturday, August 25, 2018

Rookie Lamar Jackson helps Ravens rally past Dolphins 27-10

First-round pick Lamar Jackson led touchdown possessions of 84, 62 and 73 yards against mostly deep reserves, and the Baltimore Ravens rallied past the Miami Dolphins 27-10 Saturday.
Jackson entered the game at the start of the second half and had his best performance yet for the Ravens. He went 7 for 10 for 98 yards and a touchdown, and ran for 39 yards on three carries, including a 19-yard scoring run.
"My decision-making is getting better," Jackson said. "I'm working my way up. I feel like I'm doing pretty good, but there's still room for improvement."
Kenyan Drake sparked one scoring drive with a 30-yard run and another with a 36-yard reception for the Dolphins, whose starters reached the end zone for the first time this preseason.
Ryan Tannehill fumbled twice early, and the Dolphins drew boos from the small crowd when they went three-and-out on the first series. But the offense began to click in the second quarter against a mix of Ravens starters and reserves, and Tannehill finished 11 of 16 for 115 yards.
Danny Amendola made a nifty cutback to juke past two defensive backs and score on a 16-yard pass from Tannehill. It was the first touchdown by Miami's starters during the preseason in 10 possessions.
On the next series, Tannehill hit Drake deep for a big gain to set up a field goal, and the Dolphins led 10-3 at halftime before both teams emptied their benches.
Tannehill said the offense is on track for the start of the season.
"It was good to finally get the ball in the end zone," he said. "We're heading in the right direction."
While starters for Miami saw their most extensive action this month, among those not playing for the Ravens were quarterback Joe Flacco, their top three wide receivers, three offensive linemen, safety Eric Weddle, and linebackers Terrell Suggs and C.J. Mosley.
Robert Griffin III, battling to make the Ravens' roster, played the first half. He went 9 for 15 for 66 yards and carried five times for 41 yards while playing with a mix of starters and reserves.
Baltimore's Alex Collins carried one time for 7 yards. Third-stringer De'Lance Turner scored on a 65-yard run.
Jackson's touchdown pass covered 21 yards to another third-stringer, DeVier Posey.
The Dolphins' offense started badly. Tannehill fumbled on the first play and lost 7 yards. Miami newcomer Frank Gore made his exhibition debut on the next play and lost 2 yards.
Tannehill, who wasn't hit in Miami's first two games, hopped up quickly after a jarring sack by Patrick Onwuasor. Tannehill missed all of last season because of a knee injury.
BACKUP BATTLE
Brock Osweiler and David Fales, battling for the Dolphins' backup QB job, both struggled and threw an interception.
"There's room for improvement for sure," coach Adam Gase said. "But it's hard to put it all on them when you get the ball and you're not expecting it, or we're not blocking guys. That's why it's hard to evaluate quarterbacks at times in preseason games."
KICKING
Ravens: Justin Tucker was wide left on a 51-yard field goal try and had another 51-yarder blocked. The most accurate kicker in NFL history is 0 for 4 beyond 50 yards during the exhibition season.
Dolphins: Jason Sanders, battling for a job with fellow rookie Greg Joseph, made a 33-yard field goal.
NATIONAL ANTHEM
Robert Quinn and Dolphins WRs Kenny Stills and Albert Wilson again protested social injustice during the anthem. Quinn raised his right fist, and Stills and Wilson kneeled in front of their bench.
INJURIES
Ravens: TE Hayden Hurst, the team's top draft pick, will undergo surgery for a stress fracture in his foot, and he's expected to be sidelined three to four weeks. He missed the game. ... Starting DT Willie Henry had hernia surgery and will be sidelined several weeks. ... Rookie S DeShon Elliott broke his left forearm, and the injury could be season-ending. ... Rookie OL Greg Senat left the game with a foot injury.
Dolphins: WR Jakeem Grant suffered a concussion on a helmet-to-helmet hit from Chuck Clark, who drew a penalty.
UP NEXT
Ravens: Baltimore plays its final exhibition game Thursday at home against Washington.
Dolphins: Miami plays its exhibition finale Thursday at Atlanta.

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