Ravens lose by one after Justin Tucker misses first PAT in 223 tries

BALTIMORE -- Justin Tucker thought he hit the extra point exactly how he wanted and assumed, like everyone else, that he had tied Sunday's game with the New Orleans Saints in the final seconds of regulation.

But Tucker's point-after went from going through the middle of the uprights to veering wide right with 24 seconds remaining, and the Baltimore Ravens suffered a stunning 24-23 loss to the New Orleans Saints at a windy M&T Bank Stadium.

The most accurate field goal kicker in NFL history, Tucker had never missed an extra point in his seven-year NFL career, having made all 222 of them in the regular season. When you include his two years in college at Texas and the NFL postseason, Tucker had been perfect on 316 straight extra points.

After John Brown's 14-yard touchdown catch pulled the Ravens within one point, it seemed like a formality before Tucker tied the game. Instead, he watched his point-after attempt in disbelief, tilting his head to the right as his kick sailed the same way.

"I feel like I cost us the game," Tucker said. "Every single one of my teammates thus far has told me the opposite, and no one play wins or loses a game. But that's a tough thing to grapple with when you're the guy in that situation at the end of the game."

Tucker has repeatedly said over the years that M&T Bank Stadium is the toughest place to kick because of the unpredictable wind patterns. On Sunday, gusts reportedly reached as high as 40 miles per hour.

But Tucker has continually bucked the recent trend of struggling kickers. Since PATs were moved back in 2015, Tucker had been the only NFL kicker who hadn't missed, converting 112 of 112.

"You play long enough, you're going to have a kick that you want back, and tonight was that night for me," Tucker said.

With a victory, the Ravens would've matched their best start in franchise history and stamped themselves as legitimate Super Bowl contenders. The loss dropped them to 4-3 and out of first place in the AFC North, behind the idle Pittsburgh Steelers (3-2-1).

After the game, Tucker stood by his locker as quarterback Joe Flacco, Pro Bowl guard Marshal Yanda and many other teammates walked up to the two-time All-Pro kicker and offered words of support.

Tucker asked the Ravens' public relations staff to talk at the podium so he could address every question from the media. Inside the media room, holder Sam Koch and long snapper Morgan Cox stood in the corner while Tucker spoke.

"He'll handle it great," coach John Harbaugh said. "Justin is the best in the business at what he does. He'll be back next week winning games for us. I'm very certain of that."

Flacco, who led the six-play, 81-yard touchdown drive in the final minute, doesn't always watch the extra point. He looked at this one, staring in shock as Tucker missed.

Flacco refused to put the blame on Tucker.

"We've all been through football games where it looks like you're the guy that's in the spotlight at the end of the game, when it can kind of be determined," Flacco said. "You still have to go into overtime and win that game or prevent them from going down and kicking a field goal. We're a very tight team here, and the first thing you think about is your brother and him dealing with it.

"Justin's the best in the world at what he does, and he's the most confident person that I know. It's not going to be an issue."