As Ray Rice took a 4-yard catch from Joe Flacco and bounced it outside to get 26 more yards to convert on 4th-and-29 in the waning minutes of the fourth quarter, Ravens teammates already were calling it one of the greatest single plays they’d ever witnessed.
"That was all the play-calling by Cam,” center Matt Birk joked, alluding to offensive coordinator Cam Cameron, said jokingly. "You just go out there and execute. We believe in each other. …
“We practice like we’re in those situations so when we’re out there there’s no nerves or anything like that. We just focus on executing. That situation, Ray made one of the greatest plays I’ve ever seen.”
"I thought it was amazing. I was running behind him, you know like 20 yards back," left guard Jah Reid said. " A lot people are going to remember that forever."
Rice dipped and slipped his way to San Diego’s 33 for a 30-yard gain.
“Any time Joe is in trouble I’ve got to be the safety outlet. It’s just a simple call,” Rice said. “There’s not too many calls that you can call on that play. They dropped in max coverage. I guess they figured if you drop it down to the guy then they can rally and make the tackle. Game over. I guess when you put me in the equation it’s not that easy.”
Tight end Dennis Pitta was down field and trying to get open. He didn’t, so he tried to hit somebody as the play unfolded.
“We were running deep routes and I was running across the middle trying to get to a position to where maybe Joe could throw it up to us. He dumped it down to Ray, and Ray started going all over the place,” Pitta said. “I’m trying to track him and block somebody for him.
“I don’t know if I blocked anybody on that play. Ray did such an incredible job getting exactly what he needed to get. That was an incredible play. I knew they were dropping everybody pretty deep as we were running off . … That’s a matter of Ray being a great player and getting what he needed to get.”
Defensive end Arthur Jones only could watch from the sideline. There was a lengthy delay as officials had to determine the spot of the ball and then they brought out the chains for a measure. It was a successful play and kicker Justin Tucker would come out to boot a 38-yard field goal to tie the score at 13 and force overtime.
And Tucker kicked another from the same distance to win the game 16-13 in overtime.
"I think I caught up on years of praying,” Jones said. “When it said first down, I knew we had the game won.”