View Full Version : Steelers not taking Ratbirds lightly

11-20-2005, 02:18 AM

Steelers linebacker Larry Foote listened intently while somebody rattled off the following information about today's opponent: They're 2-7 ... They're the lowest scoring team in the NFL ... They haven't scored a touchdown in the past 11 quarters ... They've scored just once in the past 19 quarters ... Their star linebacker and star safety are out ... They've lost four in a row.
"Yeah," Foote said, unfazed. "But they're still the Baltimore Ravens. And they always have that extra gear when they play the Pittsburgh Steelers."

That might be true, given the Ravens have split the season series with the Steelers (7-2) the past two years and have won the past two meetings at M&T Stadium, site of today's contest. But it is hard to ignore the fact that they're getting little production out of former 2,000-yard rusher Jamal Lewis (no 100-yard games this season), quarterback and former first-round draft pick Kyle Boller (three interceptions, one of which went for a touchdown, in last week's 30-3 loss to Jacksonville) and an offense that scores about as often as a grade-school soccer team (11.1 points per game).

The Ravens have been held to 10 points or fewer in five of nine games this season and have yet to hit the 20-point mark. Their offense ranks 26th in the league, including 25th rushing and 24th passing.

They're close to hitting rock bottom. Or, at least that's what the statistics suggest.

"It's Baltimore -- and you have to remember that at all times," Steelers cornerback Deshea Townsend said. "That's really all you need to say - it's Baltimore. That's a team that plays us hard every time out. They were going to the playoffs two years ago and we were 6-10 and it was a dogfight. They wanted to beat us. We wanted to beat them. They didn't care that our season was over or that they were playing in a playoff game the next week. It was the Steelers against the Ravens. It was hardcore football. And I don't expect anything less this time around."

The Steelers don't need to be reminded that the Ravens nearly upset them two weeks ago at Heinz Field before kicker Jeff Reed booted a 37-yard field goal with 1:36 remaining for a 20-19 win. Baltimore amassed more yardage than the Steelers, 318-261, and converted 9-of-18 third downs, but couldn't make plays down the stretch to secure the victory.

It was a draining defeat, one that apparently had a hangover effect, considering the Ravens have lost their past two games to the Bengals and Jaguars by an aggregate score of 51-12. Still, the Ravens rank third in the NFL in total defense, despite playing without linebacker Ray Lewis and Ed Reed - the past two NFL Defensive MVPs - the entire month.

"It's hard to get motivated sometimes when you're 2-7, when you've never been 2-7, when you're out of contention for the playoffs, getting a ring," said Ravens offensive lineman Orlando Brown in a profanity-laced interview. "My mindset, my motivation is I'm going to [mess] something up. If I ain't getting a ring, I'm going to [mess] something up.

"This is our job, our career, how we feed our families. So, if you're smart you go out there and do your job."

Boller, who returned to the lineup last Sunday after missing the previous seven games with a hyperextended toe, endured criticism this week from former Ravens tight end Shannon Sharpe, who said, "Kyle Boller can't play."

Boller's response? "Shannon Sharpe, come on man, what he has to say means nothing to me," Boller said.

Ravens coach Brian Billick, under contract through 2007, is even deemed to be on the hot seat by several national publications, despite a Super Bowl win in 2000 and a seven-year mark of 63-49.

"Some will question whether I am the right one to lead this challenge," Billick wrote in his online diary. "That too is justified. Clearly, this is by far the most challenging and difficult a task as I have ever faced in my professional career."

11-20-2005, 05:39 AM
Don`t ever taks anybody lightly! Especially with Tommy at qb.lol

I think we will come all out today. The best thing that could have happened to us, was the close game against the Ratbirds a few weeks ago. We know not to take em lightly!

Go Steelers!

11-20-2005, 05:52 AM
Too big a rival to take lightly. I know Parker is starting but I think Duce could make a difference in this game.

11-20-2005, 06:52 AM
This should be a quick game today, run, run, run, keep the clock moving.

Steelers win.


11-20-2005, 11:10 AM
Definitely will be a tough game. Yeah we should totally beat them, also, do you think the Steelers are also thinking stay rather healthy for next weeks game versus the Co0lts?

11-20-2005, 11:17 AM
1)never take division rivals lightly; throw out the records.
2)lord help us, Maddox is starting.

11-20-2005, 11:47 AM
Definitely will be a tough game. Yeah we should totally beat them, also, do you think the Steelers are also thinking stay rather healthy for next weeks game versus the Co0lts?

Cowher will never admit something like that, u know how he is..but u have to think, when u have a winnable game against an opponent and a super tough game the next week..u rest ur horses if at all possible for the tougher games and the stretch run.

tony hipchest
11-20-2005, 12:25 PM
steelers are lucky to be able to sit alot of nicked up players and maintain a 7-2 record with their running philosophy and defensive scheme. pluss all the back-ups are well prepared. alot of the starters who have missed time might be playing through the pain at 75% under different circumstances or on different teams.

11-20-2005, 12:32 PM
well, this should be a great game. too bad us here in ohio wont get to watch it, because the freakin browns :( and i dont really wanna pay for listening to it on the internet. but i think if they run the ball, and only let maddox throw short passes to his RB's and WR's, they should be able to win, and maybe have no int's