New England Patriots and Baltimore Ravens players pray at midfield after an NFL divisional playoff football game Saturday, Jan. 10, 2015, in Foxborough, Mass. The Patriots won 35-31 to advance to the AFC Championship game. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)
Joe Flacco tossed a career-high four touchdown passes but also threw an interception late in the fourth quarter, sealing the Baltimore Ravens’ fate in a 35-31 loss to the New England Patriots in the AFC divisional round of the NFL playoffs on Jan. 10 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Mass.
Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco (5) throws a touchdown pass to Baltimore Ravens tight end Owen Daniels (81). (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
With the win, the Patriots advanced to the AFC Championship for a fourth straight year.
Flacco was on fire for most of the game; he tossed three touchdowns in the first half to give Baltimore a 21-14 lead at halftime, and threw a fourth touchdown to push the Ravens ahead, 28-14 early in the third quarter.
But the Patriots fired back with three touchdowns in the second half, including a trick play which resulted in a 51-yard touchdown pass from receiver Julian Edelman to receiver Danny Amendola that tied the score at 28-28.
Baltimore took a 31-28 lead in the fourth quarter, but Patriots quarterback Tom Brady responded with a 23-yard touchdown pass to receiver Brandon LaFell to push the Pats ahead 35-31.
New England Patriots strong safety Duron Harmon (30) intercepts a pass by Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco in front of Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith (82). (AP Photo/Charles Krupa)
Flacco led Baltimore down the field and into striking position, but forced a deep pass to receiver Torrey Smith that was picked off by Patriots safety Duron Harmon, ultimately ending the game.
Baltimore Ravens tight end Owen Daniels (81) catches a touchdown pass in front of New England Patriots linebackers. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)
Flacco completed 28 of 45 passes for 292 yards, four touchdowns, two interceptions and a 92.1 passer rating. Brady completed 33 of 50 passes for 367 yards, with three touchdowns, one interception and a 99.3 passer rating.
Ravens running back Justin Forsett led all runners with 129 rushing yards on 24 carries. Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski led the game with seven catches for 108 receiving yards and a touchdown. New England fumbled twice, but was able to recover both fumbles.
The win marked Brady’s 19th career postseason win, extending his league record. Patriots head coach Bill Belichick earned his 20th career postseason win, tying legendary Dallas Cowboys head coach Tom Landry for the most by a head coach in NFL history.