Ravens' Steve Smith goes out with loss, mundane game

York Dispatch
  • Cincinnati beat Baltimore 27-10 on Sunday, the Bengals' fifth straight win at home over the Ravens.
  • Baltimore (8-8) failed to reach the playoffs for the third time in four years.
  • Ravens receiver Steve Smith caught three passes for 34 yards in what was likely his last NFL game.


CINCINNATI — Steve Smith wanted to go out with another huge game. Instead, he settled for a mundane one and a chance to start thinking about his family and ice cream — Rocky Road, of course.

Smith caught only three passes while the Cincinnati Bengals beat Baltimore 27-10 on Sunday. Both teams had been eliminated from playoff contention, so the spotlight was on one of the game’s all-time greats.

What was Smith thinking about at the end?

“The pressure I have now is getting the kids to school on time,” said Smith, still dressed in his silver and purple cleats and uniform pants long after the game ended. “Do I eat a pint of ice cream or a gallon of ice cream?”

The Ravens (8-8) had an emotional hangover from a last-minute loss in Pittsburgh a week earlier that had eliminated them from contention.

“For whatever reason — it’s hard to put your finger on it — our emotional level was not where it’s been in the past, and I think it has a lot to do with what happened last week,” coach John Harbaugh said. “It was definitely our worst game of the year as far as the way we played.”

A few other takeaways from the final game:

Ravens' woes in Cincy: Baltimore hasn’t won a game at Paul Brown Stadium since 2011. Their game on Sunday was the sixth time in the past seven seasons that they’ve finished the regular season against Cincinnati. The Bengals have won the past four such games, all of them in Cincinnati.

Stats: Baltimore’s Justin Tucker had a 30-yard field goal, his 38th of the season, matching his club record. Only two kickers have made 40 field goals in a season — David Akers and Neil Rackers. … Joe Flacco was 32 of 49 for 267 yards with an interception in the end zone. He finished with 4,276 yards, topping Vinny Testaverde’s club record of 4,177 yards in 1996. Asked if the record meant anything to him, Flacco said, “Not really.”

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith (89) waves to the crowd after Sunday's game. It was likely Smith's final NFL contest. He's expected to retire.