Cleveland Browns fall to Ravens, 20-10, finish the season 7-9

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BALTIMORE (AP) — The Baltimore Ravens earned a wild-card berth in the AFC playoffs Sunday, rallying to defeat the Cleveland Browns 20-10 while getting the help they needed halfway across the country.

Down 10-3 in the fourth quarter, the Ravens kicked a field goal and then took the lead on a 16-yard touchdown pass from Joe Flacco to Torrey Smith with 7:33 left.

Flacco’s 2-yard TD throw to Kamar Aiken with 3:44 remaining clinched it.

To reach the playoffs for the sixth time in seven years, Baltimore (10-6) needed to beat the Browns (7-9) and have San Diego lose in Kansas City.

That is precisely what happened.

The first part of that equation seemed easy enough, given that the Browns had lost four straight, were starting rookie quarterback Connor Shaw and had dropped 12 of their past 13 against Baltimore.

Shaw started in place of Johnny Manziel, who was  reportedly late for treatment and will be fined by the team.  Manziel landed on the IR with a hamstring injury suffered during the Carolina game last week.

The Ravens prevailed, and the Chiefs completed Baltimore’s dream scenario with a 19-7 win.