Baltimore Ravens linebacker Matthew Judon joined the crew of Good Morning Football to talk about his breakout year and how it ended in heartbreak.
One of the hosts, Peter Schrager, referenced the 2011 season for the Ravens and how it ended in similar gut-wrenching fashion. Quarterback Joe Flacco led the Ravens down the field against the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship game, but a dropped pass by Lee Evans in the end zone would force a field goal from Baltimore to tie the game. Then, kicker Billy Cundiff missed the chip-shot field goal which would’ve sent the game into overtime. The Patriots won 23-20 and advanced to the Super Bowl.
Baltimore would use this heartbreaking loss, along with the impending retirement of Ray Lewis, as the driving force to win the Super Bowl the next year.
This past season, the Ravens needed one more win to reach the playoffs. The scenario was simple heading into the game against the Bengals in Week 17, “win and your in.”
Of course, the Ravens did not win, and thus, failed to make the post-season for the third straight year. The game started off ugly for Baltimore, but a mid-game rally put them in the lead with only minutes left. With 53 seconds left in regulation, trailing 27-24, the Bengals were forced into a 4th-and-12 situation with no timeouts remaining. What should seemingly be an easy stop turned into one of the worst plays in Ravens’ history. Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton found a breakdown in the Ravens’ zone coverage and hit receiver Tyler Boyd for not only a first down but a game-winning 49-yard touchdown. Everything was right there for the Ravens and it was ripped away in the blink of an eye.
Schrager asked Judon what the team could take from this game.
“It’s just motivation. We know what we can do. We had shutouts, we had great defensive performances, and we had great offensive performances,” Judon said. “We just gotta put them both together.”
“It’s just terrible. It’s a gut-wrenching feeling.” He said about the loss. “We’re just gonna use it as motivation for next year.”
Schrager asked what watching the 4th-and-12 play was like now.
“I wanna play the Bengals right now,” Judon said. “I think we [were] overlooking them a little bit.”