As kicker Justin Tucker trotted onto the field at M&T Bank Stadium for a 36-yard attempt that could deliver the Ravens a wild overtime win, the 70,599 fans in attendance knew what to expect from the most accurate kicker in NFL history.

They might not have been nervous, but he sure was.

“It doesn’t matter if it’s a PAT in the first quarter or the game-winning field goal, whether it’s a 36-yarder or a 66-yarder, it’s always about managing your feelings and managing your emotions and channeling that into just making the kick,” Tucker said. “If you’re not feeling a little bit nervous, like, are you really living? You know what I’m saying? If you’re not feeling the emotion, the vibe of the game, then … as soon as I stop feeling that way, then it’s time for me to be done. But I will never feel that way.”

Tucker’s successful kick delivered the Ravens a 34-31 win against the Minnesota Vikings Nov. 7.

Baltimore fell behind by 14 points twice before tying the score at 24 on a 5-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Lamar Jackson to wide receiver Devin Duvernay, who made a remarkable one-handed grab in the back of the end zone with 9:19 to play in regulation. The Ravens (6-2) took their first lead of the game on a 1-yard touchdown by Le’Veon Bell with 3:29 left.

The Vikings forced overtime with a 10-play, 75-yard touchdown drive that ended with 1:03 left in regulation.

Jackson threw three touchdown passes on the day. He completed 27 of 41 attempts for 266 yards. Marquise Brown led all receivers with 116 yards on nine catches. Rookie Rashod Bateman was impressive while catching five passes for 52 yards.

Here are five observations from the Ravens’ latest come-from-behind win:

1. It was ugly at times, but the Ravens are never out of a game with Lamar Jackson. They’re making a habit of remarkable rallies.

The Vikings dominated every facet early. Minnesota’s first two possessions suggested the Ravens’ defense was in for a long afternoon. Special teams allowed a 98-yard kickoff return for a touchdown to start the second half that doubled Baltimore’s deficit. Four consecutive possessions from the offense in the first half ended with three straight punts and a Jackson interception.

But it didn’t matter. The Ravens have won three games in which they erased double-digit deficits and played three overtimes in their first eight games.

“I hope not. I’m not trying to be going to overtime every week,” Jackson said of the frequency of these dramatic finished. “We didn’t lay down. We saw the score was tilted early in the game. Our guys just fought.”

Jackson threw two interceptions, both at the worst imaginable times. In overtime, linebacker Anthony Barr tipped and caught a pass intended for fullback Pat Ricard. The Vikings took possession needing only a field goal to win.

The other pick came after Jackson and the Ravens began a drive at their own 20-yard line with 1:52 until halftime trailing by 11 points. The quarterback tried to force a pass to tight end Mark Andrews through double coverage that found its way into the hands of safety Camryn Bynum.

The 2019 NFL MVP bounced back from both of his ill-timed interceptions with scoring drives on the Ravens’ next offensive series. When the defense forced a Vikings’ three-and-out in overtime, Jackson orchestrated a 10-play, 72-yard drive to set up Tucker’s game-winning field goal. Jackson went 3-for-3 on the drive.

When the Ravens got the ball back 1:25 before halftime, Jackson led a 75-yard touchdown drive aided by a 42-yard pass interference penalty on a deep pass to Bateman. He hit running back Devonta Freeman for a 5-yard touchdown just before halftime to bring a game that was slipping out of hand to within a touchdown.

If the first eight games of the season taught us anything, it would be that it’s never safe to turn the channel or head to the exits early with this team on the field.

2. After an abysmal start, the Ravens’ defense corrected persistent tackling issues and played lights out the rest of the way.

It looked early on that the bye week offered no relief to a struggling Ravens defense.

Minnesota’s first two possessions went 79 and 94 yards, respectively. The Vikings took a 7-3 lead on their first possession after a blown third-down coverage by safety Chuck Clark allowed wide receiver Justin Jefferson to get behind the Ravens’ secondary for a 50-yard touchdown.

As Jefferson did the “griddy” dance in the M&T Bank Stadium end zone, it felt eerily reminiscent of Bengals rookie wide receiver Ja’Marr Chase, Jefferson’s teammate at LSU, breaking out the same celebration two weeks earlier after an 82-yard catch-and-run.

Running back Dalvin Cook broke loose for a 66-yard run on Minnesota’s next possession, also on third down, to set up a 1-yard touchdown run for Cousins that put the Ravens behind 14-3 less than two minutes into the second quarter. The Ravens’ defense seemed doomed for a long day after only playing eight snaps.

Minnesota would only put one more touchdown drive together the rest of the way. The Ravens forced the Vikings to settle for a field goal late in the second quarter after Jackson’s untimely first interception gifted them a possession that started in the red zone. When Jackson threw another interception in overtime, Baltimore quickly forced the Vikings to punt after gaining a single yard in three plays.

The Ravens have garnered criticism for their tackling woes through the first half of the season, but soundly brought Vikings ball carriers to the ground on Sunday.

“Gang tackling is a function of everybody being in a good place and forcing it back to your help,” Harbaugh said. “We did a much better job of that, especially in zone coverage. Our guys are where they’re supposed to be.”

Cornerback Marlon Humphrey endured the worst game of his career against the Bengals when he was in coverage against Chase for most of the rookie’s 201-yard performance. Defensive coordinator Don Martindale said this week that he has “all the confidence in the world” in his top cornerback. Humphrey rewarded his coach’s faith with a bounce-back performance that included two pass breakups on third down.

3. Devonta Freeman had his best game as a Raven, but Baltimore’s rushing attack remains too reliant on Lamar Jackson.

Jackson eclipsed 100 yards on the ground for the 12th time of his career, passing Michael Vick for the most 100-yard rushing games by a quarterback in NFL history. He turns 25 in January.

Jackson ran 21 times for 120 yards and accounted for nearly half of Baltimore’s 247 yards rushing.

“Would you rather not run 21 times today and lose the game? It’s crazy to even suggest that,” Harbaugh said when questioned about the number of times Jackson carried the ball. “We don’t plan on running any number of times. We plan on running as much, throwing as much, handing it off as much, blitzing as much, playing zone coverage as much as you think it takes to win the game in the game, and that’s really what you do.”

Freeman, who the Ravens only added to their practice squad after the team’s top three running backs all suffered season-ending knee injuries in the preseason, started in place of the injured Latavius Murray. He rushed for 79 yards on 13 attempts (6.1 average) with a long of 19. He also caught a pair of passes, including the short touchdown reception from Jackson just before halftime.

Bell, also added only after the flurry of running back injuries, gained 48 yards on 11 attempts and also found the end zone.

“[Bell] and Freeman were doing their thing,” Jackson said. “Those guys were just doing what they’re supposed to — run the ball, catching stuff. They were doing their thing tonight.”

Rookie Ty’Son Williams, who has been active each of the last two games with Murray sidelined by an ankle injury, did not receive a carry.

4. Pat Ricard has had a relatively quiet season. He reminded us of the weapon he can be in just one drive.

The 300-pound defensive lineman turned fullback entered Nov. 7 with three catches for 19 yards. In a single drive early in the third quarter, he doubled his season total for receptions and gained nearly twice that many yards.

There was a 12-yarder on third-and-14 that put the Ravens in position to convert on fourth down the following play. On first down, Jackson hit Ricard for a gain of 19. Both times Ricard powered through multiple defenders to gain extra yards.

Finally, on fourth-and-goal from the 1, the duo connected again for a touchdown.

“Pat Ricard was responsible for one drive all himself, basically, in the passing game,” Harbaugh said, nearly shouting to emphasize the extraordinary circumstance.

5. The Ravens have little time to dwell on the loss of DeShon Elliott with a short week ahead.

Harbaugh announced that starting safety DeShon Elliott suffered a severe upper-body injury that will likely force him to miss the remainder of the season.

Coming off their bye, the Ravens did not get any previously injured players back. Murray (ankle), wide receiver Sammy Watkins (hamstring), right tackle Patrick Mekari and nose tackle Brandon Williams (shoulder) were all inactive Sunday, while safety Ar’Darius Washington was the lone healthy scratch.

Watkins returned to practice Nov. 4 for the first time since sustaining his injury against the Colts and Williams was a limited participant Nov. 5.

Both may have a chance to return against the Miami Dolphins Nov. 11 as the Ravens take the road for the first time since beating the Broncos in Denver Oct. 3. Tight end Nick Boyle returned to practice two weeks ago, but was not added to the 53-man roster ahead of the Vikings game. The Ravens would benefit from the potential return of the NFL’s best blocking tight end against the Dolphins.

Photo Credit: Kenya Allen/PressBox