Ravens Sweep Steelers and Win at Heinz Field 23-20


For the first time since 2006, the Baltimore Ravens have swept the Pittsburgh Steelers. After a beatdown in week one, week nine proved to be a very different game. The Ravens trailed late in the fourth quarter and put the game on Joe Flacco’s back. Flacco did his best Marshawn Lynch and “put da team on his back”. After a series of drops by Ravens’ wide receivers, Flacco finally connected on a beautiful bomb to Torrey Smith to win it for the Ravens.

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This was a total team effort for the Ravens. The defense played great as always, the special teams delivered when they needed to, and the offense made the big play at the end. To start, let’s focus on the defense.

The first two people you have to mention is Cary Williams and Lardarius Webb. The two Ravens cornerbacks made some outstanding plays that prevented the Steelers from converting on third down. The plays that come to mind are Lar Dar’s great tackle on Rashard Mendenhall as he approached the first down marker and the multiple pass deflections by Cary Williams. The cornerback position was the most scrutinzed position of the Ravens for the past few seasons but they’ve made efforts to fix the problem and it is finally paying off.

Although Billy Cundiff missed a very important kick in the beginning of the game, the rest of the special teams played well. Cundiff rebounded by connecting with two other field goals later in the game and also booted the ball deep into the endzone for multiple touchbacks. David Reed had some nice kick returns that took the ball out close to the thirty which really helped the offense get going on some drives.

And then there’s the heavily criticized offense. No one could have guessed what Ravens’ offense would have shown up tonight. It was up and down for most of the game with one of the high points culminating with a Ray Rice touchdown. The Ravens looked very methodical on that possession and drove down the field with ease. After a three and out late in the game, the Ravens got one last chance to come out of Pittsburgh with a W. Flacco looked like Tom Brady on that drive, starting on his own eight yard line and going 92 yards with 2:16 on the clock. Flacco received little help from his wide receivers with Anquan Boldin dropping a very catchable ball and Torrey Smith dropping a potential game winning touchdown pass. However, Smith got his chance at redemption a caught the game winning touchdown with eight seconds remaining.

This is a great momentum builder for the Ravens as the head to Seattle to face the Seahawks next week. It also shows that they can’t be counted out while down in the fourth quarter. This makes 9 fourth quarter comebacks for Joe Flacco in his career and raises the question: Is Joe Flacco an elite quarterback? Answer in the poll below and make sure to leave your thoughts in the comments.

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