Clayton's Drop Sinks the Ravens: NE 27, Bal 21

Joe Flacco and the Baltimore Ravens fought hard and looked to be well on their way to game-winning score. Unfortunately, the Patriots defense had other ideas, and after forcing Baltimore into a fourth down inside the New England 10-yard line, Joe Flacco found Michael Clayton open for a first down a heartbreaking dropped first down catch, and the Patriots took over on downs.

Two things to keep in mind, though: the Patriots may have won, but they very nearly surrendered a late-touchdown that would have beaten them. Had Clayton not dropped that first down catch, the Ravens would have four cracks at the endzone—and likely would have won.

As for Flacco, while he struggled at times today, his ability to regain his composure and lead the Ravens down the field for a game-winning drive speaks volumes about his potential going forward. He may not have led the comeback today—Clayton’s drop killed those chances—but he certainly showed he’s capable of doing it in the future. And with Baltimore’s stingy defense and potent running game, Flacco’s emergence, even in the loss, makes the Ravens a very scary team for the rest of the league.

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