a comprehensive look at what led to justin tucker making the longest field goal in nfl history

the nfl playoffs this year were not as interesting or as much fun without the participation of the baltimore ravens. but this isn’t a woulda, shoulda, coulda post. actually, yeah it is. it’s full of hypotheticals. but rather than bellyache (complain, yes bellyache can be a verb  🙀 ) let’s talk about an exciting moment from earlier this season; in fact the nfl named it the moment of the year!

justin tucker with his hand to his ear celebrating his record breaking field goal--vocabulario en inglés

justin tucker moments after the nfl moment of the year (usa today)

week 3 was not thanksgiving, but the ravens were playing in detroit and clifton brown reported on baltimore ravens.com  that the team was

thankful to have a great kicker who let them off the hook

thankful means u want to say thank u, grateful. the feelings of gratitude (appreciation) for ravens kicker justin tucker were because he won the game by hitting a 66-yard field goal– the longest in nfl history. we say tucker let them off the hook because despite making mistakes and missing opportunities to win the game easily, there were no consequences — the ravens still won the game.

an animation of letting a fish off the hook vocabulario en inglés

letting a fish off the hook. the idiom comes from fishing  🪝🐟 (scoutlife.org)

clifton brown explains that the ravens found themselves in trouble because…

marquise “hollywood” brown dropped three passes that could have been touchdowns.

drop means not catch. and could have been is the first example of many that we will see of past modals. it is used to talk about hypothetical situations in the past and consists of a modal auxiliary verb (would, could, should, might, may, must or better), have and a past participle.

meme of morpheus from the matrix the text reads what if i told u u dropped the ball vocabulario en inglés      meme of dwight from the office with a stern face the text reads when someone drops the ball vocabulario en inglés

drop the ball is an idiom that means fail, miss an opportunity

the article says that the first drop

should have been a 25-yard touchdown reception in the second quarter, when [quarterback lamar] jackson threw a perfect pass to brown who was streaking across the end zone. however, the ball slipped through brown’s hands and forced baltimore to settle for a 39-yard field goal that opened the game’s scoring.

should have been is another past modal example. should used in this structure (aka should in the past) frequently indicates a mistake. threw is the irregular past tense of throw. streak means run fast. end zone is the area at each end of the field where players must enter to score a touchdown. however is for contrasting ideas– like but. settle means that baltimore really wanted a touchdown (6 points) but they accepted  a field goal (3 points).  slip through (his) hands is another way to say drop.  it is often used metaphorically as well to refer to a failed relationship, like in this song by labrinth. listen at 3:25 for…

as i sink in the sand, watch u slip through my hands
oh, as i die here another day, cause all i do is cry behind this smile

it’s hard to tell for sure from the video, but it looks like this ball might have been tipped (deflected) by tracy walker, #21 on the lion defense.
the other two drops came during the ravens’ final possession of the first half. according to (clifton) brown,  marquise brown was streaking again, this time down the right sideline (boundary) after easily getting behind the lions defense. unfortunately hollywood dropped the pass and 3rd conditional was used to describe it…

had brown made the catch, it would have been a 76-yard touchdown play

had brown made the catch means the same thing as the past perfect if brown had made the catch. justin fried at ebonybird.com also used past perfect to talk about the two drops on the final drive of the first half. he wrote

if brown had caught either pass, they likely would have gone into the half with a 17-0 lead.

had caught is past perfect. it’s typical to use past perfect with an if clause in the 3rd conditional but it could be replaced with would have caught. either means one of the two. likely is probably. would have gone is 3rd another hypothetical in the past.
a streaker at a rugby match vocabulario en inglés
streaking also means running naked in public 🙈 (ross land/getty images)
like clifton brown and justin fried, cbs analyst adam archuleta gave a similar description on the game broadcast. he said…

that coulda been a dagger right before halftime

coulda been, the reduction of of could have been, is another past modal. a dagger is a play that secures a victory.  archuleta’s idea is that the ravens could have put the game out of reach (made it impossible for the lions to win) by halftime if hollywood would have made the catch.
but he didn’t. that’s why we are seeing all these hypotheticals 😸
and also why justin tucker’s late game heroics were so important.
woman shouting knives meme where an angry woman has daggers coming out of her mouth and a man has one in his heart vocabulario en inglés
dagger is actually a violent idiom. it gives the idea of a dagger to the heart
additionally, the ravens defense had a play that hypothetically could have been more than it was. the lions tried a trick play (creative, atypical) on their second possession that the ravens blew up (identified and shut down). safety chuck clark hit running back d’andre swift as he tried to throw a lateral back to quarterback jared goff and linebacker tyus bowser got his hands on a ball with a clear path to the end zone, but he couldn’t hold on.  clifton brown uses the combination of past perfect and would in the past to observe that….

had bowser caught the ball cleanly, it would have been an interception that he may have been able to run in for a pick-six.

pick six is football vocabulary. it’s an interception that the defense returns for a touchdown. the record for the longest pick 6 in nfl history is held by ravens legend ed reed.


the ravens were ready to move on (forget about, continue) from the mistakes against the lions immediately.  clifton brown wrote that…

tight end mark andrews, who played with [marquise “hollywood”] brown at oklahoma, has no doubt the talented wide receiver will bounce back.

bounce back means return to normal after a bad moment, be resilient. indeed hollywood  bounced back the next week at denver. against the broncos he had  four catches for 91 yards and a touchdown.

mark andrews signaling first down

mark andrews signaling that he picked up the first down. he was the all-pro tight end in 2021. (associated press)

quarterback lamar jackson commented…

people like me and marquise, we’re going to be talking to each other the whole day like, ‘i effed up,'” but we’re not worried about that. that happened, that’s over with. we won the game.

effed up (or f’ed up) is a nice way to say fucked up, i.e. played bad.

the coyote caught the roadrunner? damn, that’s effed up

it must be said that seconds before justin tucker kicked the longest field goal in nfl history, the ravens picked up (got) a first down on 4th and 19. jackson connected with wide receiver sammy watkins for 36 yards.  one final hypothetical because if jackson hadn’t found watkins, justin tucker wouldn’t even have had the opportunity to try the kick.

virtual yellow line that represents what is required for a first down vocabulario en inglés    football referee signaling a first down vocabulario en inglés

when u are watching football on tv, the virtual yellow line shows how far the offense needs to go to pick up the first down. 

so in addition to being the longest field goal in the history of the nfl, tucker’s clutch kick was a walk-off gamewinner! from 66 yards away, tucker bounced (hit and it went up in the air) it off the crossbar (the bar that connects the posts, it’s horizontal to the ground) for the victory. when a measurement is used as part of an adjective phrase, like it is in the title of the gif below 👇🏽that measurement (yards in this case) becomes singular. thus, a 66-yard field goal.  a yard is slightly more than a meter.

View post on imgur.com

finally, the english practice extra for this post is a tik tok celebrating justin tucker’s moment of the year and briefly remarking on super bowl lvi and the question who dey? who dey, is short for who dey think gonna beat dem bengals? it’s the battle cry (shout that excites and unites) of cincinnati bengals fans. the answer is nobody 😹 the vid contains examples of underdog, though, kinda, folks, in a row, drubbing and  flip as well as bounce & crossbar (defined in the previous paragraph) and shit, which in the video refers to the ball.
@richyrocksenglish richyrocks.con #english #vocabulary #englishpractice #englishcoach #englishteacher #englishlesson #englishclass #ingles #superbowllvi #nfl ♬ Money Trees – Kendrick Lamar

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