BALTIMORE (AP) — Lamar Jackson hurt an ankle and lost one of his top targets to a more severe injury.
At least Baltimore’s star quarterback was able to keep playing. The Cincinnati Bengals weren’t so lucky.
Jackson threw two touchdown passes in the second quarter — one of which came thanks to a fortuitous carom — and the Ravens beat Cincinnati 34-20 on Thursday night after the Bengals lost Joe Burrow to a wrist injury.
The AFC North-leading Ravens (8-3) completed a head-to-head sweep of Cincinnati (5-5) and moved to 2 1/2 games ahead of the last-place Bengals — but both teams came out of the game with significant health concerns.
Burrow left in the second quarter after throwing a touchdown pass and wasn’t able to return. Baltimore tight end Mark Andrews is expected to miss the rest of the season after hurting an ankle.
“That’s very tough because that’s my boy,” Jackson said. “That’s like receiver one sometimes.”
Ravens coach John Harbaugh announced after the game that Andrews’ injury appears to be season-ending. Cincinnati coach Zac Taylor said Burrow’s injury looked like a sprain, and it’s not clear what his availability is going forward.
The injuries overshadowed this huge divisional matchup, but only to a degree. It was a huge win for a Baltimore team that has been dominant at times but hasn’t been able to pull away in the tough AFC North.
The Bengals were up 10-7 after Burrow’s 4-yard scoring toss to Joe Mixon, but the Ravens answered when Jackson’s pass over the middle bounced off linebacker Germaine Pratt and right to receiver Nelson Agholor, who caught the ball in stride and punctuated the 37-yard touchdown with a flip into the end zone.
“He was flying,” Jackson said. “That’s a Florida boy. We’re known for speed.”
Jackson threw a 10-yard TD pass to Rashod Bateman with 23 seconds left in the half to put Baltimore up 21-10.
Jake Browning, a 27-year-old backup who had played in only one NFL game, relieved Burrow and was able to guide the Bengals to a field goal to start the second half. But that was all he could manage until he threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to Ja’Marr Chase with 1:08 remaining in the game.
Browning was 8 of 14 for 68 yards.
“I felt calm all the time, felt like I threw the ball where I wanted to, but obviously there were too many three-and-outs,” Browning said. “Put our defense in a tough situation and I think when Joe goes down I go in the game fully expecting to win.”
Jackson threw for 264 yards despite losing Andrews on the first drive of the game.
Gus Edwards bookended Baltimore’s day offensively with 3-yard touchdown runs — the first made it 7-0 and the latter 34-13.
Cincinnati won the division the past two years, when late-season injuries kept Jackson off the field for the Ravens. This year Jackson has been able to stay available — he went into the tent after hurting his ankle in the first quarter Thursday but remained in the game — and Baltimore’s AFC North rivals are the ones dealing with health issues at quarterback.
Cleveland, which won at Baltimore last weekend to pull within a half-game of first place, lost Deshaun Watson for the season with a fractured shoulder. Now Burrow is dealing with another injury after he faced calf trouble earlier this season.
The Ravens had five sacks, increasing their league-leading total to 44.
The game was delayed briefly because of apparent drone activity around the stadium.
“We saw them up there, drones. That’s a first,” Harbaugh said. “I thought I’d seen it all with the Super Bowl, the lights going out at the Super Bowl. Now we got drones flying around.”
The lights went out during Baltimore’s victory over San Francisco in the Super Bowl in New Orleans after the 2012 season.
The Bengals have lost 14 consecutive regular-season night games on the road. Baltimore improved to 20-3 at home in that situation since 2008.
“Our fans were really great,” Harbaugh said. “(The Bengals) had to take delay of games, they had a tough time communicating out there. They couldn’t get lined up numerous times as a result of the crowd noise.”
Cincinnati CB Cam Taylor-Britt left the game with a quad issue.
Bengals: Host Pittsburgh on Nov. 26.
Ravens: Visit the Los Angeles Chargers on Nov. 26.
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