The Pittsburgh Steelers sit on top of the AFC North with a 9-3 record after beating the Ravens, 13-10. The Steelers have an impressive 6-1 record on the road this season. The Ravens suffered their first loss at home this season and fall to 8-4 on the season.
It’s second and five with 3:21 left to go. Joe Flacco takes the snap and drops back three steps for a quick throw. As he’s throwing the ball, Troy Polamalu was blitzing from he’s blind side unblocked. He hits Flacco before he makes a throwing motion and creates a fumble. The Steelers recover and returned the fumble recover to the Baltimore nine yard line.
Three plays later, the Steelers took the lead with a nine yard pass to Isaac Redman. If the Ravens stopped them on third down, the Steelers would’ve settled for a field goal to be down by one point. Instead, they put the pressure on the Ravens to make a play being down 13-10.
With 2:51 left in the game, there is plenty of time for the Ravens to drive down the field to tie the game with a field goal or take the lead with a touchdown. The Ravens are on the move and get to Pittsburgh 31 yard line on a fourth and two. Do you take a chance with a 49 yard field goal for the tie with the wind going against them? Or, do you go for it and keep the drive alive to get a better field goal positioning or maybe a touchdown to win the game.
John Harbaugh decided to try to get the first down. Joe Flacco had Ed Dickson open for an easy first down. However, Flacco’s throw came up two yards short and the pass was incomplete.
The Steelers won this game because they held the ball for 34:08 compared to Ravens 25:52. The Ravens committed a costly turnover that easily could’ve been avoided if they just ran the ball. There are just too many risks in throwing the ball that late in the game with a lead.
The Ravens have to travel to Houston next week to play the 5-7 Texans. This is a nationally televised game on Monday night. The Ravens can’t afford another loss if they want to win the division.
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Written by Frisco Fahs