Steelers Today - A Pittsburgh Steelers blog


Steelers get ugly win over Ravens

December 28, 2009 By: Admin Category: Post-Game Reports

It wasn’t pretty, but a win is still a win.  That’s the way most of Steeler Nation must have been feeling after watching the Steelers defeat the Baltimore Ravens 23-20.

Following a 5-game losing streak, the Steelers have won two consecutive games to keep their playoff hopes alive.  Both wins have been narrow wins, but we’ll take wins of any type at this point.

Santonio Holmes runs for TD

There were quite a few positive aspect to the game.  Probably the most important is that the Steelers defense did not allow a single point during the fourth quarter.  When was the last time we were able to say that?

Not only did the defense not allow the Ravens to score in the fourth quarter, but they also made key defensive plays in the 4th quarter to stop the Ravens.  That has been one of the primary differences between the 2008 Steelers defense and the 2009 edition.  The 2008 unit made plays when the team needed them, while the 2009 unit doesn’t.  At least they didn’t until this game.

On the Ravens final possession of the game, the Ravens were driving when LaMarr Woodley sacked Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco on 2 consecutive plays.  On the second sack, Woodley also forced a fumble which was recovered by rookie Ziggy Hood.  That pretty much sealed the victory for the Steelers.

Other positives for the Steelers included Rashard Mendenhall surpassing 1,000 yards rushing for the season.  That is a first for Mendenhall.  Hopefully, it will be the first of many for the talented young rusher.

RB Rashard Mendenhall

Another milestone was Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger becoming the first Steelers quarterback to pass for over 4,000 yards.  As Big Ben is so fond of reminding us, the Steelers are now a pass-first team.  His new Steelers passing record just proves that point.

Despite the win and the many positive performances on the Steelers side of the ball, the game was not a total masterpiece.   The Steelers allowed the Ravens to rush for 175 yards.  Ray Rice accounted for 141 of those yards.  I don’t know about the rest of you, but I am really starting to hate that guy.

Besides the rushing yards allowed, the Steelers also got some lucky breaks due to penalties by the Ravens.  The Ravens had two touchdowns called back due to penalties.  They had a third touchdown dropped in the endzone by Derrick Mason, who is usually their most dependable receiver.

So just as the Steelers have often left games this season feeling that they beat themselves, the Ravens probably felt the same way.  But who cares how the Ravens feel?  This win keeps our playoff hopes alive, and so we’ll happily accept it.

Playoff picture:

The NFC playoff teams are set.  The only thing that has to be resolved is the playoff seeding.

In the AFC, on the other hand, things are as clear as mud.  Seven teams have a chance to win the two remaining wildcard playoff positions.  Five of the teams have an 8-7 record going into the last week of the season, and two teams have a 7-8 record.  Tie breakers are certain to be needed to determine which teams will ultimately make the playoffs.

The only thing that we know for certain is that the Steelers have to win their final game.  If they don’t do that, all other discussion becomes moot.


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7 Comments to “Steelers get ugly win over Ravens”

  1. They did it, despite being totally out played in the 3rd qtr. If the Ravens had not pulled out their gun and started shooting themselves in the foot, we are probably not talking about a win, are we? The chances of the playoffs are still slim even with a win in Miami, and that will not be easy.

  2. My guess is we win a close one against Miami and NE beats Houston but the Ravens or Denver or Jets win. Oh well as some of the players said yesterday there is no one to blame but this team if they don’t make the playoffs this yr.

  3. Interesting…one noticeable difference in the Steelers on Sunday…the Killer Instinct. Remember Reason #4 that we were having a lousy season. Why was it there on Sunday (& clearly not in certain previous weeks?) Down the stretch, we got a better rush and generally maintained coverages long enough to force the action. Glimpses of the ‘old Steelers.’ Scheme? Leadership? What was the difference? That answer is the key to our future. With all due respect Coach Tomlin,it was not as simple as a bad bounce or making a single play here and there. The Steelers put together a few series of them on defense for a change. Yes they were aided by Raven miscues-the kind that even out over a season for the good teams. The marked difference was the cohesive effort and execution by the Defense when it mattered. Now, if we only understood how and why we were successful on this Sunday (as opposed to some of the others), we would have something to build upon.I guess the answer to that will be revealed in Miami. Happy New Year Steeler nation.

  4. itiswhatitis says:

    Tomlins “Not dead yet” is the funniest thing ever.I just can’t stop thinking about Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail.When they say “Bring out your deeaad!”and the one guy on the cart keeps saying “I’m not dead yet.”Funny.

  5. I’m not impressed. Overly fortunate to have 23 TDs called back for Baltimore. We can’t even run 2 minutes off the clock without a penalty helping us.

    Guys, please don’t buy into the dream that the Steelers are coming back. Not happening this year, sorry. Just setting yourself up for more disappointment.

    Playoffs!Playoffs? Not a chance. NE and Cin have nothing to play for and that will result in another cakewalk for Jets. And Houston will get one too.

    See you guys next year.

  6. itiswhatitis says:

    Well “We aint dead yet” so I still gotta ride with my boys.And weirder things have happened in the NFL.So i agree we wouldnt deserve it but if we get it in the immortal words of J Peezy”Who rides?We ride!”

  7. It would be great to see the Steelers finish on Sunday with a strong performance. They need some re-tooling but they are still a strong team when they execute like they are capable. Stuff the run against Miami; pressure Henne and it would be nice to see Rashard get >100 yds. Here we go Steelers -one last time in ’09. Finish strong!


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