Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson’s work in bringing his team back from a 16-point deficit in the fourth quarter on Monday night was called “one of the greatest performances I’ve ever seen” by Ravens head coach John Harbaugh.
The reaction on the other side was different. Colts head coach Frank Reich regretted getting conservative in the fourth quarter when they could have put the game away and the team’s defense was left trying to explain why they went from holding the Ravens in check to being unable to stop them at all.
Injuries in the secondary played a role and Jackson had plenty of time to find open receivers as breakdowns occurred at every level of the defense. The failure led linebacker Darius Leonard to call this the worst loss of his career.
“When the game was on the line, the defense didn’t step up,” Leonard said, via Joel A. Erickson of the Indianapolis Star. “That was really heartbreaking. We believe in this defense, and when you don’t step up, and you don’t win a game for the Colts organization as a defender, it sucks. That was definitely the worst one.”
Given the circumstances, it’s hard to argue with Leonard’s assessment of the magnitude of the loss.