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Third-quarter notes: Ravens 14, Patriots 13

FOXBORO — The third quarter is done at Gillette Stadium [1], and the Ravens hold a 14-13 lead. Here are a few quick notes:

‘€¢The Patriots started their first drive of the second half with their worst field position of the night — their own 9-yard line. A 24-yard connection from Tom Brady [2] to Wes Welker [3] was amplified by a personal foul on Bernard Pollard [4] for a post-completion hit on the receiver. That got the Patriots to the Baltimore 36-yard line, but a Welker drop on third down — it would have been good for a first down if he had caught the ball — forced a New England punt.

‘€¢The Ravens took advantage and had their best drive of the quarter on the ensuing possession — that’s when Joe Flacco [5] really turned it up, going down field with a 22-yarder to Dennis Pitta and adding a 15-yarder to Ray Rice [6]. The Ravens took the lead on a five-yard pass from Flacco to Pitta (one play after Pitta was absolutely crushed by linebacker Jerod Mayo [7] on a reception) to make it 14-13 with 6:14 left in the third quarter. It was an impressive 10-play, 87-yard drive for the Ravens, who appeared (at least for that drive) to move away from a reliance on the deep ball for more underneath stuff. Regardless, the two scoring drives for Baltimore went 90 and 87 yards.

‘€¢The Ravens were knocking on the door at the end of the third quarter, thanks to another nice sequence that started in earnest with a 23-yard completion from Flacco to Torrey Smith [8] — at Alfonzo Dennard‘s expense — that got Baltimore into New England territory. Bernard Pierce picked up 11 yards on a third-down run, and the Ravens were into the Patriots’ red zone.