BALTIMORE – One of the biggest plays in the Bills comeback win over Baltimore was a catch in the end zone — and it wasn’t for a touchdown.
Jordan Poyer’s interception with 4:15 left in regulation that not only prevented the Ravens from scoring but also allowed the Bills to start their next drive at their 20-yard line was a huge play.
“He [Devin Duvernay] was wide ass open and I kind of peeked at him, he was in the corner of the end zone and Lamar didn’t see him at first so I peeked back at Lamar, he was scrambling and as soon as I peeked at him he was kind of raising his hands up like he wanted the ball so I took off and Lamar saw him open and he kind of floated it in the air and I just went to go make a play on it,” Poyer said after the game.
“I was proud of the way we executed our defense and got the takeaway. I think that was big was the takeaway as opposed to hey ball sails out of bounds and we get the ball at the minus 3-yard line there. IT’s a little bit different so that takeaway by Jordan Poyer, the rush by our defensive line I thought worked well together,” Sean McDermott explained in his postgame press conference.
The Ravens started that drive on their 5-yard line and drove all the way down to Buffalo’s 2-yard line going 93 yards on 14 plays in 9 minutes and 29 seconds. Baltimore decided to go for it on 4th and 2 and that’s when Poyer made, in my opinion, the play of the game for the Bills. To not only stop Baltimore from scoring but give your offense better field position on what ended up being the game-winning drive was big.
“That’s why we love him, he’s gonna put his body on the line, the interception at the end there was huge,” Josh Allen said after the game.
“It gave us better field position instead of being backed up. To get the ball at the 20-yard line now, but again just the way he plays man, the intensity, the love that he plays with for those guys on the field and on the sideline you can’t replicate it.”
“Obviously probably a ball Lamar wants back, I was just able to play with some vision and just take advantage of his throw that he made,” Poyer said.
The Bills were able to erase a sloppy first half where they turned the ball over twice, had a bunch of dropped passes, tipped passes and miscues. At one point they were down 20-3 but were able to score 20 unanswered points to come back and win it 23-20 on a Tyler Bass field goal as time expired.
“Von always tells us don’t blink you know, it’s a good offense, good quarterback, one of the best in the league and trying to contain him is a tough job so he made some plays with his feet guys didn’t blink though,” Poyer explained.
And Poyer’s interception in the end zone was actually his second of the game. He came up with his first pick of the night that stopped the Ravens previous drive. Lamar Jackson’s pass bounced off Prince Emili’s helmet, flew up in the air and Poyer was able to come down with it preventing Baltimore from putting points on the board and keeping it tied at 20.
“Our d-line like they’ve been doing all year just getting hands up and being able to get hands on the football, it was kind of one of those balls in the air, it seemed like it was in the air for 30 minutes, just waiting for it to come down and was able to make a play. It was a huge play for us, stopped their momentum” Poyer explained.
You can’t say enough how much Poyer means to this defense and even more so now with Micah Hyde out for the season with a neck injury. Poyer now has four interceptions on the season and what’s even more impressive is he’s done that in just three games after missing last week’s game in Miami with a foot injury. Poyer has at least one pick in every game he’s played this season.
His performance was all part of the Bills big comeback in the second half as the defense shutout Lamar Jackson and Baltimore’s offense in the final thirty minutes.
“I think early on in the game defensively we just got in some tough situations. Obviously you wanna come out and try to find ways to get them to just kick a field goal in those situations but we knew we were gonna come alive at some point and we just had to keep trucking just one play at a time. It’s the NFL, things happen quickly, things can turn quickly in the NFL,” Poyer said.
Last week after that tough loss to Miami, Von Miller said adversity reveals character and he was excited to see how this group responds and that response was on full display in the second half of this game, pulling out a gritty, gutsy win bouncing back after a sloppy first half.
“It really showed a lot about how we were able to handle adversity today. Probably a lot of people counted us out early on in the game, down 17 against a really good football team so we were able to come back and keep our heads straight, don’t blink and found a way to win,” Poyer said.
Heather Prusak is a sports reporter who joined the News 4 team in 2020. See more of her work here.