There was no point in the second half of Monday night’s game that the Baltimore Ravens were not trailing the Kansas City Chiefs, who were able to take a comfortable lead into halftime. Baltimore had not lost a regular season game in 14 games. They had not even trailed at any point in the second half in 13 games.
The last team to hold a second-half lead at any point during the regular season was the Pittsburgh Steelers back in week five of the 2019 season, a game started by Mason Rudolph and finished by Devlin Hodges, which took an overtime forced fumble by Marlon Humphrey to settle.
While that thought might provide some comfort to Steelers fans, it’s worth reminding that the Ravens did demolish them in the final week of the season with Lamar Jackson, Mark Ingram, and other key players sitting on the bench, having already secured the top seed in the playoffs.
Jackson has only lost four games in 25 regular season starts, but three of them have now come against the Chiefs, and Patrick Mahomes. After Monday’s loss, which sent them into a second-place tie in the AFC North behind the Steelers, he called them “our kryptonite”.
Of course, that doesn’t really mean much when you’re speaking about the best team in the league. The New England Patriots were every team’s kryptonite for a long time. Now the Chiefs are every team’s kryptonite. It’s not as though they have done much losing lately, either. They went 12-4 last year, with one of those losses coming when Mahomes was out.
Jackson and the Ravens, though, view the Chiefs as their kryptonite because they see themselves as the best team in the league, and yet Kansas City has kept getting the better of them. In actuality, the Chiefs have four straight wins over the Ravens, Baltimore’s last win coming in 2012 in a 9-6 game.
On Monday, Jackson completed just 15 of 28 pass attempts for just 97 yards. He did throw one touchdown pass, and has yet to be intercepted this season. He rushed for 83 yards. Last year, he went 22-for-43 against the Chiefs for 267 yards without throwing a touchdown or interception, though he ran for one score. As a rookie in 2018, he went 13-for-24 for 147 yards with two touchdown passes and 67 rushing yards.
Jackson has had to play from behind in each of those games, something that he is not used to, and something that he has struggled to perform facing. He has trailed by at least 10 points five times in his career, and has lost all five of those games. The Ravens are the only team in the league to have zero wins in games in which they trailed at halftime in the past three years.