Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN

Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN 13
Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN 10

The Steelers win the toss and defer to the second half. The big story of the pregame was how windy and cold it was in Baltimore.

The Ravens come out passing and Flacco can’t hit anyone. Flacco dances around forever on 3rd down before Ziggy brings him down.

Arians must have been watching the Nevada-Boise St game because the Steelers come out in the Pistol offense. Gotta say, I’ve always been a fan of the Pistol Offense. Ben is able to convert a 3rd and 8 with a swing pass to Redman that he takes up the sideline to get us across midfield. The drive stalls out there when Ngata destroys Ramon Foster on 3rd down. Ngata hit Ben in the face and breaks his nose. No idea how that’s not a 15-yard penalty for a Blow to the Head. But whatever.

The Ravens offense does nothing, and then they attempt a fake punt but it gets blown dead on a false start call. Antonio Brown brings the punt back to the 45.

Ben takes a shot downfield on second down and barely overthrows Mike Wallace. Brown makes a nice catch on 3rd down but comes up just short of the sticks. Sepulveda pins them inside the 10.

The Steelers have the Ravens backed up to the goal line but on 3rd down Flacco goes deep and hits Boldin streaking downfield past Ryan Clark. Boldin takes it all the way to the 35 for a 61 yard gain. Vomit. The refs show early that they’re going to call a fair game, calling the Ravens for holding, but Flacco converts with a few out-routes to move inside the 20. On 2nd down, the Steelers only bring 3 and Flacco is able to roll out and hang in forever, flinging one to a wide open Boldin for 6.

Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN


Raise Some grinds out 8 yards on first down, then Ben almost gets killed on 3rd and 2 but is able to get it out to Moore who scampers and barely picks up the first down.
Second Quarter
Baltimore challenges the spot of the ball and loses. Suggs sacks Ben on 2nd down, effectively ending the drive. Sepulveda kills a punt with the wind at his back but the coverage breaks down and the Ravens bring it back to near midfield.
After two incompletions, Flacco is able to hit Mason over the middle, but the defense keeps him short of the sticks. Cameras show Sepulveda on the sidelines getting his knee looked at. Uh-oh…
Ben comes out and hits David Johnson down the seam for a big gain. The offense keeps rolling with a slant route to Brown to move the chains and get the offense near midfield. Ben takes another shot deep and has both Brown and Wallace in the area but the Ravens corner makes a better play on the ball and picks it off at the 2.
In almost a mirror image of their last drive that started at the 2, the Steelers hold until 3rd down when Flacco finds a wide open receiver downfield for a 60+ yard gain. The Blind Side finally gets called for jumping the snap and Ike comes up with a big sack on 3rd down to push the Ravens out of Field Goal range. Big-time sack by Ike there. Great call by LeBeau.
With 4 minutes to go, Ben starts going to work, hitting Wallace and Sanders on the left sideline to move us up to midfield. Raise Some gets 8 on first down, but the offense can’t convert.
Two Minute Warning
With Sepulveda hurting, Tomlin elects to go for it on 4th and short. Ben looks off 2 receivers and hits David Johnson over the middle to move the sticks. The drive stalls out when Hines can’t come down with a pass over the middle. The O-line did a fantastic job blocking that whole drive. Suisham punts, pinning the Ravens inside the 15.
The Ravens kneel it out. For the few defensive breakdowns we had, being down 7-0 wasn’t bad at all. The O-line played a LOT better after the first two drives.
3rd Quarter
The Steelers pick up right where they left off, moving the ball with Mendenhall then Ben going over the middle to Hines, who atones for his earlier drop. Ben goes to Wallace on the WR screen, and Wallace makes a move and takes it up the sidelines down to the Ravens 30. First time all year the play worked, and it worked because we finally got it in the hands of our fastest receiver. The motif offense gets a try, and Sanders gets his fingertips on the pass but can’t come down with it. Suisham nails it from 45.
That makes Suisham 5/5 from 40-49. Reed was 0/4. Just saying.
The Ravens get their longest run of the game when Rice gets 11 and moves the sticks on a cut-back run. Flacco, like he has done all game, does nothing on 1st & 2nd down, then goes after B-Mac on 3rd down, hitting Mason on an out-route to move the chains. Woodley gets held on the edge, but there’s no flag and Flacco is able to scramble up the middle and get the ball inside the 10. The defense finally gets some pressure on 3rd down and forces a bad throw, holding the Ravens to 3.
The offense looks like it’s going to crap all over itself when Mendenhall gets stuffed on 2nd and short and Ben fumbles on 3rd down, but the Ravens get called for defensive holding, giving the Steelers a first down. The Steelers go to the no-huddle and get rolling with Mendenhall on a swing and Sanders on an in-route. On 2nd and 1, the Steelers get stoned twice. Ben gets the team quickly to the line on 4th down and draws the Ravens offsides. Wow. Heath gets nailed helmet-to-helmet by a safety but there’s no flag. DJ our only healthy TE now.
After a few scary moments of Heath laying on the field he walks off. Even Chris Collinsworth starts asking how it wasn’t a flag. If it’s that obvious that Collinsworthless is questioning the officiating, you know something is bad.

Brown gets another catch on the WR screen and takes it up the sideline for the first down. Mendenhall grinds for 3, putting him over 1,000 on the season. On 3rd down, Ben scampers away from pressure and hits Manny Sanders open at the 2 for a big conversion.

Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN
Huge play to end the 3rd.
Fourth Quarter
Redman and Mendenhall get stuffed in the backfield and Ben tries to use the quick-out to Wallace but he gets held up at the 1. Suisham converts.

The Ravens try an end-around but Woodley blows it up.

Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN

A check-down to Rice gets them back to 3rd and 8 but a corner blitz by Ike forces Flacco to throw early. Punt.

The offense stalls out after an illegal formation penalty. Suisham punts again.
The defense holds when the Diesel gets his paws up and bats down a pass on 3rd down.
Ben gets things rolling with two nice passes to Wallace to get across the 40. Ben gets sacked on 2nd down and David Johnson can’t get to the sticks on 3rd and long. Suisham punts.
Baltimore takes over at the 27 with 4 1/2 to play. Flacco goes to the air and B-Mac gets called for pass interference when Mason pushes off. Whatever. The officiating in this league is a joke. Troy comes untouched around the edge and knocks the ball out of Flacco’s hand. Woodley scoops it off and takes off the other way, rumbling all the way to the 9.

Ben gets rushed by Suggs on first down but is able to push him off and throw the ball away. Heck of an individual effort by Ben. Ben throws it out the back of the end zone on second down. On 3rd down, Ben hits ISAAC F***ING REDMAN on a slant route

Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN
…he runs through about 40 Raves and plows to paydirt.
Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN
For the record, Redman scored on the double-slant route we love to run at the goal line.
Potsie and Silverback storm the backfield on first down and bring Flacco down. On second down, Flacco hits Boldin to get to 3rd and short. Ike makes a huge play on 3rd down to knock the ball out of Douchemandzadeh’s hands. The Ravens go for it on 4th and 2 and the Steelers only rush 4, giving Flacco the time he needs to find a receiver.
Two Minute Warning

Flacco goes back to Boldin, hitting him to get the ball across midfield as the clock ticks to 1:30. B-Mac gets called for another PI, giving the Ravens another first down. Flacco goes deep for Douche and B-Mac makes a great play to get a hand in and knock out the ball.

Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN
Great job by B-Mac stepping up when he needed to after getting picked on all game.

Rice catches a check-down to get inside the 35. Flacco hits some joke out of the backfield but he comes up just short of the sticks. Baltimore uses their last timeout with 37 ticks left and a 4th and 2 at the 36.

Rather than attempt a long field goal, they go for it on 4th down. Flacco looks for Boldin on the quick slant but B-Mac has him blanketed, so Flacco goes the other way and underthrows his tight end, skipping the pass in.
Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN




Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN
Players of the Game
Offensive Game Ball: Ben Roethlisberger
Defensive Game Ball: Troy Polamalu
Honorable Mentions:
Shaun Suisham
Isaac Redman
James Harrison
LaMarr Woodley
James Harrison
Ike Taylor
Mike Wallace
David Johnson
Mr. Yuck Sticker of the Game
Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN
No flags for Helmet-to-Helmet hits
Three plays really stand out in this one. Ben gets hit in the face by Ngata and breaks his nose. No flag, but a blow to the head. Heath gets crushed with a helmet-to-helmet hit. No flag. NBC lets us know that the NFL says it should have been a flag. Question of the night:
Sunday, Bloody Sunday: Steelers WIN
Seth brings up a great point. The NFL has, for a long time, sent Hallmark “We’re sorry we screwed you over during the game but it won’t change the result” cards on Monday or Tuesday to teams that suffered bad calls. But to call them out in the middle of the game? That’s a pretty low blow. It really hurts the credibility of the league. The third call in question was on the Steelers last drive, when Suggs had Ben by the ear-hole of the helmet. Not sure how you can grab the quarterback by the helmet without hitting him in the head. Regardless, the NFL is digging themselves deeper and deeper into a hole, and you’d better believe their phones will be ringing off the hook if the Raven who hit Heath doesn’t draw at least a $50K fine.
Anyone who wants to call or write on your own:
National Football League
280 Park Ave # 12W 
New York, NY 10017-1206 
(212) 450-2000 
Their address and phone number aren’t a big secret. It’s on Google Maps.
Be respectful though. They’ll probably just ignore you if you’re rude.
Final Thoughts
  • What an effort by Ben Roethlisberger playing with a broken nose. How much can you say about him? Holy cow, what a warrior.
  • He’s not going to get a lot of credit, but Ike Taylor played one hell of a game tonight. He might be a Top 5 cover corner in the league.
  • We’re getting really thin at TE and OL with Heath and Flozell going down.
  • Sepulveda has a torn ACL and is out for the year. Who brought the kryptonite in Baltimore?
  • Big Ben is 6-0 against the Ravens since 2007.
  • That was Big Ben’s 19th career 4th quarter comeback and 25th career Game-Winning Drive, his 5th Game-Winning Drive against the Ravens. [Source: Pro Football Reference]
  • Isaac “Red Zone” Redman. What a play on the game-winning score. Great individual effort.
  • I’ve been pretty outspoken about disliking the WR screen in the past, but if they’re going to throw it, I’d rather it go to Wallace. He actually has the speed to make some big plays out of it.
  • The Pistol Formation was a good move by the coaching staff. Nice to see them mixing it up.
  • Arians actually called a pretty good game. Still would like to have better plays inside the Red Zone rather than relying on individual efforts for scores, but we like to give credit where credit is due.
  • Does Dick LeBeau know how to coach or what? The two corner blitzes he sent Ike on resulted in a sack and a rushed throw on 3rd down. Sending Troy off the corner was the difference in the game.
  • Our O-line couldn’t block Suggs all game, but they stepped up when they needed to and got better as the game went on.
  • Did Ed Reed even play tonight? He was a complete non-factor. Best safety in the league, eh Deion?
  • Besides the one drive where we gave up 2 big plays to Boldin, the defense did a great job against the Ravens receivers. B-Mac got picked on but stepped up and made a big play when he had to.
  • James Harrison is a freaking monster. Glad to see a few holding penalties finally get called, but there were also a few big ones that weren’t.
  • People have ragged on our defense for giving up points in the 4th quarter, but guess what? This was the 6th time this year the Ravens D blew a 4th quarter lead.
  • Under-rated play of the game: Ben drawing the Ravens offsides by rushing the team to the line on 4th and 2.
  • Under-rated play of the game #2: Ben rolling away from an unblocked blitzer to find Sanders at the goal line to set up our second FG.
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