Lamar Jackson ran for 94 yards and a touchdown as the focal point of a relentless rushing attack that amassed 294 yards to help Baltimore Ravens emerge from a COVID-19 outbreak to beat the Dallas Cowboys 34-17.
Returning from a one-game absence after testing positive for the virus, Jackson carried 13 times and threw for two scores.
He was one of 23 Ravens to spend time on the reserve/COVID-19 list while four different strains of the virus swept through the organisation.
The NFL game was played on Tuesday night because Baltimore’s previous game – against Pittsburgh last Wednesday – was pushed back three times while the Ravens had at least one player test positive for 10 consecutive days.
Gus Edwards ran for 101 yards on just seven carries and rookie JK Dobbins – who also missed time on the COVID-19 list – added 71 yards rushing with a TD to help Baltimore (7-5) break a three-game skid and stay alive in its quest to reach the post-season for a third straight year.
Dallas came in with the worst rush defence in the league, and it showed.
The Ravens averaged 7.9 yards per carry and prevailed despite getting only 107 yards passing from Jackson.
The last-place Cowboys (3-9) have lost six of seven.
The game was supposed to feature Ravens receiver Dez Bryant going against his former team, but Bryant left during warm-ups and was scratched with what Baltimore termed “an illness”.
Bryant wrote on Twitter that he tested positive for COVID-19 and later posted: “Yea I’m going to go ahead and call it a quit for the rest of the season… I can’t deal with this.”
He subsequently posted a series of tweets, including, “Yea I’m coming back… I’m being smart”.