Justin Tucker’s NFL Record Field Goal Secures Controversial Ravens Win Over Lions

Written By Danny Lawhon on September 26, 2021

Fans of the Detroit Lions are used to bad beats. But the Baltimore Ravens and a Justin Tucker NFL record field goal added a fresh new scar to the list.

Tucker blasted a 66-yard field goal on the final play of the game to set a new league mark and lift the Ravens to a 19-17 victory over Detroit, sending the Lions to 0-3 on the season.

But whether the Ravens should have even been kicking from 66 yards out on the final play is up for an officiating debate.

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Officiating controversy at end of Lions-Ravens game

With Baltimore at the Detroit 48-yard line and seven seconds remaining on the game clock. Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson snapped the ball with the play clock appearing to already have expired. On-field referees, however, did not blow the play dead for a delay-of-game penalty that would have sent a potentially different end-of-game scenario into play.

As it played out, Jackson threw the ball into the stands to stop the game clock with 3 seconds to play, and Tucker trotted out onto the field for the winning kick.

Justin Tucker’s record kick had significant moneyline implications

This is the first full football season where wagering on NFL games is legal in the Michigan sports betting scene, and the tantalizing prospect of a Detroit moneyline upset would have made the final-kick pain all too real this week.

This is a different situation from Week 1. Depending on when bets were made, a late Lions charge against the San Francisco 49ers for a 41-33 loss could have meant a surprising backdoor cover. On this Sunday, the spread was not in doubt, with Baltimore favored by between 7.5 and 8 points by kickoff time at FanDuel Sportsbook and several others after an opening line closer to 10 at most sportsbooks.

But the moneyline issue could have proven costly. At DraftKings Sportsbook, for example, the Lions closed as a +280 underdog straight-up against Baltimore. Over at PointsBet Sportsbook, the Detroit moneyline was as high as +300 leading up to kickoff. And on the other side, the Ravens had surged to a -400 moneyline pick at BetMGM Sportsbook.

That latter figure is important to consider for bettors considering the Ravens as part of teaser bets or a large parlay, not unlike the 16-leg effort at BetMGM last week that resulted in a free bettor being given an option of a six-figure payout before the Lions’ Monday Night Football loss to the Green Bay Packers.

It was one potentially missed delay-of-game call. And one all-time record field goal from Justin Tucker and win for the Ravens.

But the gambling costs of these games can reach far and wide.

Photo by Duane Burleson/AP
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Danny Lawhon

Danny has more than a decade of reporting experience in three states, including nearly 10 years with the Des Moines Register in Iowa. He's covered college and professional sports, the NCAA Tournament and the PGA, LPGA and Champions Tours. Danny is a professional musician in his spare time and plays the piano and pipe organ (seriously). He now covers the online gambling industry in Michigan.

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