PITTSBURGH (AP) – Ben Roethlisberger knew what was to come. Call it a byproduct of nearly two decades spent in the familiar rhythms of an NFL season.
So before the question was closed about the significance of Baltimore’s Sunday visit, the AFC North frontman, the longtime Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback rushed to answer.
“(This) is a victory? Is that what you would ask? ” Roethlisberger said this week. “It is. Everything moving forward has to be that way. That’s the hole we put ourselves in, that every game has to be the most important game of the year. “
There is, perhaps, more important than this. The four-match winning streak that pushed the Steelers (5-5-1) back into the game is now a distant memory. Three almost listless weeks including a draw with still-winless Detroit and crushing in Cincinnati will do the trick.
“There were a number of times when we fell short and had to admit it was huge,” said defensive director Cam Heyward. “But to learn from that is even better.”
Pittsburgh needs to be a quick study against Raven (8-3). Baltimore’s offense has been recent, but they’ve found a way to keep winning.
No matter how shaky the Steelers’ defense is – they allowed a staggering 180.5 yards/game in the last month – Raven full-back Lamar Jackson knows better than looking at the numbers and thinking. that somehow things will become much easier for them. usually do when Pittsburgh is on the other side of the line.
“Sure, it’s a rival game,” Jackson said. “We knew it was going to be an intense game, like always, and a very physical one, as always. I am ready.”
Better than he should. Jackson was just 1-1 against Pittsburgh at the start and was on a sloppy four-turnover performance against the Browns. The Steelers have done a solid job at keeping him in check – they tied him to two interceptions and two losses in their win in Baltimore last year – but allowed them to need to go a long way. otherwise their last five games would have been little more than pride.
“If we don’t contribute our time and really lock it up (Jackson), man, he’s going to have a field day,” Heyward said.
FINAL SUCCESSFUL SUMMER
The Raven is February 13, 2018, the best mark in the NFL. Last year, they lost on December 2 in Pittsburgh amid the COVID-19 outbreak that caused the game to be played on a Wednesday. It was originally scheduled for Thanksgiving.
Jackson didn’t play in that game. The last time he played at Heinz Field, he threw three interceptions in 2019 but Baltimore won anyway.
“I played there twice, rookie year and 2019, but last year, I had COVID. So I knew it was going to be noisier than ever,” Jackson said. “I know some of our fans are going there too. I knew ‘Flock Nation’ would be at Heinz Field, but I just couldn’t wait to hear the noise, hear the atmosphere, smell it and feel it. “
This is the 30th meeting between Steelers coach Mike Tomlin and Ravens coach John Harbaugh, including post-season. Only two sets of coaches have faced off against each other more often: George Halas and Curly Lambeau have met 49 times, and Steve Owen and Lambeau have met 31 times.
Tomlin leads the series with Harbaugh 15-14.
“We have a great relationship,” Harbaugh said. “I have a lot of respect for Coach Tomlin, the whole organization there. I have other friends in the organization there. “
Just not for three hours on Sunday.
TAKE THE WIRE DOWN
Team Raven is leading 6-1 in games decided by eight points or less, 4-1 in games decided by scores in the final 2:00 or in extra time, and 3-1 in The game is decided on the last turn.
Tomlin said of Baltimore: “I have always respected their leadership over the years and their unblinking attitude. “I think that always reflects that group. I don’t think this year will be any different.”
The Steelers have a similar resume, with one key note. When it’s tight, Pittsburgh is competitive. When not, the Steelers are toasting. Pittsburgh is 5-1-1 in one-point games this season, but 0-7 in nine or more decisive games as of 2020.
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https://baltimore.cbslocal.com/2021/12/02/afc-north-leading-baltimore-ravens-visit-reeling-pittsburgh-steelers/ AFC Raven Baltimore leads the North to visit Reeling Pittsburgh Steelers – CBS Baltimore