Boldin, Flacco carry Ravens past Colts in AFC wild-card game
Baltimore, MD, United States (4E Sports) – Veteran Anquan Boldin tallied a franchise playoff record 145 receiving yards and Joe Flacco threw two touchdown passes as the Baltimore Ravens defeated the Indianapolis Colts, 24-9, in the AFC wild-card game Sunday at M&T Bank Stadium.
Boldin caught five passes and crucial 18-yard touchdown heave from Flacco, who hit 12 of 23 passes for 282 yards as the Ravens advanced to the next round against the Denver Broncos Saturday.
Bernard Pierce rushed for 103 yards on 13 carries while Ray Rice added 70 ground yards on 15 carries. Fullback Vonte Leach added a two-yard scoring run in the second quarter for the Ravens, who won a postseason game for the fifth straight season.
The victory delayed the retirement of linebacker Ray Lewis, who made 13 tackles. The veteran defender earlier announced he will hang up his cleats after 17-years at the end of the Ravens’ playoff run.
Andrew Luck hit 28 of 54 throws for 288 yards and became the first signal-caller in NFL history to be selected first overall and start a playoff game in a season.
Wide receiver Reggie Wayne had nine catches, moving him into second all-time on the NFL postseason reception list. Wayne’s 114 reception yards against the Ravens marked the third time in his 12-year career he has had a 100-yard game in the playoffs.
The Colts tallied 419 yards of total offense and 25 first downs but could not find the end zone and had to settle for three field goals by Adam Vinatieri for offense.
The Colts ran their offense without offensive coordinator Bruce Arians, who was hospitalized with an illness. Quarterbacks coach Clyde Christensen filled in for Arians.
After trading field goals, Flacco hit Rice with a 47-yard pass to set up a two-yard touchdown run by Leach to give Baltimore a 10-3 lead.
The Ravens extended their 10-6 halftime lead to 17-6 when tight end Dennis Pitta caught a 20-yard touchdown pass from Flacco.
The Colts cut the lead to 17-9 late in the third quarter when Vinatieri booted his third field goal.
However, Boldin caught an 18-yard touchdown pass from Flacco with 9:14 remaining in the fourth quarter to seal the victory.