Ravens Insider Mike Preston talks about the Ravens' 22-20 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars at M&T Bank Stadium. (Kevin Richardson/Baltimore Sun video)
The Ravens would have lost even if they had won.
In one of the most-bizarre endings in the modern day NFL, the Ravens lost to the Jacksonville Jaguars, 22-20, on Jason Myers' 53-yard field goal with no time on the clock.
If there was any hope for the Ravens this season, it sailed through the uprights with Myers' field goal. If there was any optimism about a turnaround, it disappeared into the cool evening air at M&T Bank Stadium.
Enough is enough.
Good teams don't lose to Oakland, Cleveland and Jacksonville in the same season, with two of those losses coming at home. Possible long-shot contenders don't struggle and then lose to teams like the Jaguars, which had lost 13 straight on the road before Sunday.
"We're just not the type of team that's finding ways to win right now," said Ravens QB Joe Flacco after his team's last-second, 22-20 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars. (Kevin Richardson/Baltimore Sun video)
A loser's mentality is starting to set in with this team because they would have been happy barely beating Jacksonville. Playoffs? Are you kidding me?
Last week, Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith was talking about the Ravens making history by winning eight straight and becoming the first team to start 2-6 and earn a playoff bid.
Well, the Ravens are on course to make history. While celebrating the 20th season in Baltimore they might be the worst in team history. There are no more excuses, not after Sunday.
I don't want to hear about injuries or the officials. I don't care if the Ravens haven't given up or how they've been in every game until the final minutes. The Ravens find ways to lose, and if they don't then they create new ones.
"We could have played better and that could have made a difference in the game," cornerback Jimmy Smith said after the team's 22-20 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars. (Kevin Richardson/Baltimore Sun video)
They had two weeks to prepare for Jacksonville (3-6) and came up with another losing, embarrassing effort. You can forgive outside linebacker Elvis Dumervil for his face mask of quarterback Blake Bortles on the next-to-last play of the game, which set up Myers' game-winning field goal.
That's understandable, because it was a hustle play. But while Dumervil was playing until the final whistle, some of his teammates on the field were celebrating. If Dumervil had some help, maybe he wouldn't have had to grab the face mask. If he had some help, maybe someone else would have gotten pressure.
Even more disturbing was that only several weeks earlier Ravens defensive players didn't finish off Arizona Cardinals running back Chris Johnson, and he ended up making a big run.
Even as a turnover drought that had stretched over 62 series and seven games came to a merciful end in the first half, the Ravens defense blamed the balls that slipped out of their hands Sunday afternoon as the main reason why the game did the same.
"We all thought the game was over, but we have to finish better," said Ravens outside linebacker Courtney Upshaw. "We kind of left Doom [Dumervil] out there alone. We can't stop like that. We have to finish the game."
You'd figure that the Ravens learned from some of their mistakes earlier this season, but not this bunch. They had a lot of penalties again (nine for 121 yards). They had four turnovers, three of those from quarterback Joe Flacco, who is becoming Mr. Turnover this season.
And after eight years in the league, Flacco still has problems securing the ball and throwing with accuracy. He often throws high, leaving his receivers vulnerable. If there are any questions, go ask Kamar Aiken.
If that isn't enough, the Ravens secondary continues to struggle, and if they had played against a strong-armed quarterback Sunday they would have given up more than 300 yards and four touchdown passes.
Very little has changed since the season opener. They still can't find a consistent punt returner and they lack discipline. They don't have enough playmakers and the killer instinct is gone.
How many times did the Ravens run pass patterns two or three yards short of the first-down marker Sunday? On a third-and-9 from the Jaguars' 47 with two minutes left in the game, the Ravens threw a 4-yard pass to running back Buck Allen, and then punted.
If they had gotten the first down the game was over, because Jacksonville had no timeouts remaining. At 2-6, what did the Ravens have to lose? Instead, Jacksonville got the ball at their own 20 with 1:06 left against one of the worst pass defenses in the league.
Instant Analysis of the Ravens' game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at M&T Bank Stadium in Week 10 of the NFL season.
It's really not open to discussion.
"We're just not the type of team that's finding ways to win right now," Flacco said. "At the end of the day, we're not good enough. It shows up in your record."
It really showed up against the Jaguars, a league doormat for years. In Bortles, Jacksonville has a quarterback who stares down receivers and often doesn't give them a chance to make plays in the end zone. When he did throw nice passes, his receivers dropped them.
Jacksonville has a secondary that is worse than the Ravens', a group of misfits who apparently haven't met a tight end they can cover. At one point Sunday, a Jacksonville assistant coach was screaming from the press box at cornerback Davon House, who had failed to cover receiver Jeremy Butler.
And yet Jacksonville, which had just 258 yards of total offense compared to 397 for the Ravens, won. If the Ravens had been victorious, they had a favorable schedule coming up with the St. Louis Rams next week followed by the Cleveland Browns on Monday night football.
Both of those teams lost Sunday, but who cares at this point? I've seen enough. The Ravens lost to Jacksonville. At this point of the season we're often looking to see if the Ravens have gotten better and if they can make a deep run into the playoffs.
Not this year. A winning season will be hard to obtain at this point.