The fear Jackson created with his legs, along with the mild balance provided by his throws, kept Cincinnati from committing to an eight-man front, and that led to a huge day running the ball for Baltimore. Gus Edwards, an undrafted rookie, was just behind Jackson with 115 rushing yards on 17 carries as part of a team effort that generated 265 yards.
But while the whole team worked for the win, the day was defined by Jackson. His 27 rushing attempts as a quarterback were the most in at least 20 seasons, with Tim Tebow of the Denver Broncos having the previous high in that span, with 22 in a win over the Chargers in 2011.
According to ProFootballReference, the last player to have 25 rushing attempts and 10 passing attempts in the same game was Joe Geri, a halfback for the Steelers, who did it in a win over the Giants in 1950.
On Sunday, the Ravens had to adjust to playing without Flacco, who led the team to a Super Bowl in the 2012 season. They even got Robert Griffin III, the team’s third-string quarterback, into the action. The former Washington star lined up as a receiver and served as a decoy on a quarterback sneak by Jackson that converted a first down.
The Bengals, who were down 13-7 at halftime, did their best to stay in the game, at one point scoring 14 unanswered points and taking a 21-13 lead. But their defense could not hold it, allowing the Ravens to get 11 unanswered points of their own.
Cincinnati got the ball back on its own 10-yard line with 2:45 remaining in the game, but on a 4th-and-3 from the 37-yard line, Marlon Humphrey was able to outfight Cody Core for the ball, forcing it to the ground and turning things over on downs. That allowed Jackson to come out and kneel on the ball to run the clock out and secure the victory.
The Jackson experience, while a success, was likely a one-week affair, as Flacco, who had previously missed just six games in his career, could be back for Baltimore’s home game against the Raiders next week.