The first half saw a hard-fought game, and the Ravens took a 17-14 lead into the locker room.
By the end of the third quarter, the game had undergone a 180 degree flip, as Denver scored 21 unanswered points, led by precise decision-making on Peyton Manning’s part and countless mistakes by Baltimore. Demaryius Thomas made it 28 straight less than two minutes into the fourth, and was easily the top receiver of the night.
Wes Welker became the first player in the NFL to catch a touchdown pass from Tom Brady and Paeyton Manning midway through the second quarter. He was repeatedly targeted over the middle and on the sidelines by Manning, and certainly gave fantasy owners something to smile about as he caught his second touchdown of the game later on.
Manning became the sixth quarterback to throw seven touchdown passes in an NFL game.
Although Baltimore shared or held the lead for the entire first half, there was no offensive rhythm in the second half. Penalties plagued the Ravens, and as Manning found his stride, Flacco became more inconsistent. Michael Oher and Jacoby Jones both left the game with injuries.
The final score of the game was 49-27, as Denver shut down any hopes of a late comeback.
For the Bengals, it’s certainly nice to start the season with a chance to get ahead. The Ravens are arguably their largest obstacle to winning the division. If they can win against the Bears on Sunday, it’ll put them one step ahead of the competition.