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Baltimore Ravens edge Minnesota Vikings in wild win

Mother Nature did her best to make this one a snoozer, but no dice.

The Ravens and Vikings combined for 35 points over the final 2:07 minutes of play in a wild affair that wasn't over until quarterback Joe Flacco's 9-yard scoring strike to rookie wide receiver Marlon Brown sealed Baltimore's 29-26 win over Minnesota.

The victory keeps the Ravens (7-6) very much alive for the AFC's sixth playoff seed and -- if the Bengals tumble hard down the stretch -- maybe more.

Here's what else we learned:

  1. Weather was a major factor all afternoon in a game that saw four lead changes inside the two-minute warning. This one looked to be over after running back Toby Gerhart's 41-yard touchdown run gave the Vikings the lead with 1:45 to go. It wasn't. It looked over after Ravens return man Jacoby Jones took the subsequent kickoff 77 yards to the house with 1:27 on the clock. It wasn't. It definitely looked over after wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson -- with 1:01 left -- breezed in for a 79-yard Vikings score. It wasn't. The Ravens never gave up.
  1. Joe Flacco played the hero going away, but the rugged conditions were a factor in his otherwise sloppy afternoon. After opening 4-of-14 passing, the Ravens quarterback threw two uglyinterceptions down the stretch. Flacco's third-quarter pick set up a Vikings touchdown before his fourth-quarter interception snuffed out a Ravens drive in Vikings' territory. Still, Flacco was money when it mattered most.
  1. Vikings running back Adrian Petersonleft the game with what NFL Media Insider Ian Rapoport labeled a right mid-foot sprain. In his absence, Gerhart -- despite being victimized by a questionable call on a fumble -- showed well, rambling for 89 yards on the day at 5.9 yards per carry.
  1. Patterson continues to impress for the Vikings. The rookie is more involved in Minnesota's passing game than ever before and showed speed and a knack for getting open between Baltimore defenders. His 141 receiving yards more than doubled his single-game best on the season.
  1. It's impossible to ignore Baltimore. Coming off an electric win over the Steelers, the Ravens fought for their lives Sunday and look like a good bet for January. Still, facing the Detroit Lions, New England Patriots and Cincinnati Bengals won't make for an easy stretch run.

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