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Ravens a little less sloppy than Chiefs in 9-6 win

Kansas City Chiefs cornerback Brandon Flowers (24) missed a tackle on Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice (27) in the third quarter on Sunday, October 7, 2012 at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri. Ravens won 9-6.

By Jeff Zrebiec, The Baltimore Sun –

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Baltimore Ravens can’t get out of Kansas City soon enough.

It wasn’t a good performance by any means, but three Justin Tucker field goals and four Chiefs turnovers were the difference as the Ravens survived an ugly game to post a 9-6 victory in front of an announced 68,803 at Arrowhead Stadium.

Tucker hit from 28 yards in the first quarter and then converted 26- and 39-yard field goals in the third to provide the Ravens with their only points on a day where quarterback Joe Flacco couldn’t get much going in the air and the defense couldn’t stop the Chiefs on the ground.

Chiefs quarterback Matt Cassel, who was booed throughout and committed three of Kansas City’s four turnovers, was knocked out of the game with 9:48 to play because of a head injury after a hit by Haloti Ngata. Brady Quinn came into the game and the Chiefs thought they scored the go-ahead touchdown on a pass to Dwayne Bowe, but Dexter McCluster was called for offensive pass interference.

They settled for a Ryan Succop 31-yard field goal that cut the Ravens’ lead to 9-6 with 4:31 to play. However, the Ravens got the ball back and were able to run out the clock. The big play was Joe Flacco’s 16-yard scramble on third-and-15.

Then, on third-and-1 after the two-minute warning, Ray Rice was able to pick up the yard, allowing the Ravens to take a knee and kill the rest of the clock.

The Ravens improved to 4-1 on the season while the Chiefs fell to 1-4.

Rookie Deonte Thompson fumbled the opening kickoff and the Chiefs advanced the ball down to the Ravens’ 1. Cassel tried to sneak it in from there but he never appeared to get a handle on the snap and fumbled, allowing safety Ed Reed to scoop it up.

The Ravens then turned the possession into points as Tucker was good from 26 yards out to give the visitors a 6-3 lead.

Another Chiefs turnover — this one a Cassel interception to Cary Williams — gave the Ravens the ball back and Tucker converted a 39-yard field goal as time expired in the third quarter to make it a 9-3 game.

The Ravens played as poorly as they probably could play in the first half and went into the locker tied at 3.

Flacco completed just 7 of 17 passes for 64 yards and was sacked twice. Rice rushed for 52 yards but 37 of them came on one carry, which set up rookie Tucker’s 28-yard field goal that gave the Ravens the lead late in the first quarter.

Defensively, the Ravens were gouged for 179 rushing yards, including 125 on 20 carries from Jamaal Charles. Charles had already eclipsed the 100-yard mark with eight minutes left in the second quarter. In doing so, he became just the 10thrunning back to post 100 yards on the ground against the Ravens in the past 88 games.

But every time Charles and his backup Shaun Draughn got the Chiefs going on a drive, Kansas City would either commit a penalty or a turnover. After three carries for 25 total yards, Cyrus Gray fumbled the ball and rookie Courtney Upshaw recovered.

On the Chiefs’ next drive, Cassel tried to force the ball into Bowe and it was intercepted by Lardarius Webb after a deflection by Williams.

Kansas City scored its only points of the half on Succop’s 30-yard field goal with 2:52 remaining before intermission, but even on that drive, the Chiefs had first-and-goal from the 7, and a penalty and two runs for losses pushed them back.

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