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Old 06-22-2012, 03:25 PM   #1
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Default Best NFL defense: Ravens or Steelers?

Best NFL defense: Ravens or Steelers?
http://www.profootballweekly.com/201...ns-or-steelers
By PFW staff

It’s an AFC North battle in the first semifinal matchup of our “In the Trenches” bracket searching for the best defense in the NFL. The Pittsburgh Steelers take on the Baltimore Ravens to see who moves on to the championship.

It’s up to the fans to decide who moves on, but here’s what the PFW staff had to say about the matchup:

Senior editor Eric Edholm:
“Even with the loss of Terrell Suggs — and I think he will be back sooner than people realize — the Ravens are the better unit overall, despite last season’s small rankings differences. The Ravens were better in the red zone, they are less dependent on so many 30-somethings, and the young, underrated core of talent gives them the edge in depth. The Ravens are more of a playmaking unit overall and were playing their best ball in the postseason. The Steelers’ defense let the team down in the loss at Denver.”

Associate editor Kevin Fishbain:
“This matchup, like when the two face off on the field, is as close as they come. I’m going to give the slight edge to the Steelers, simply because there are fewer question marks. Terrell Suggs’ injury plus Ed Reed and Ray Lewis reaching the end of their careers helps move the needle to Pittsburgh. While the Steelers’ are far from a young and spry unit, there’s enough talent there that still has years left — most notably James Harrison, LaMarr Woodley and Troy Polamalu. Add to that Dick LeBeau, arguably the best defensive coordinator in the game, and the Steelers, who had the league’s top defense last season, should get the win over their rivals in this round.”

Associate editor Arthur Arkush:
“I am going with the Steelers, but this is easily the most difficult matchup thus far. The biggest reason for my decision is the monster offseason injury of Terrell Suggs, the 2011 NFL Defensive MVP and arguably the most dominant defender in the game. Although the Steelers have had several offseason changes of their own, I think they are better equipped to handle the losses of Aaron Smith and James Farrior with Ziggy Hood and Larry Foote, players who have already proven their worth in this league. Given the task of filling in for Suggs, who hopes to return this season, is rookie Courtney Upshaw, who I think was a great pickup but also a guy who will need time to learn in the NFL. The Ravens have better players coming up the pipeline but Pittsburgh still has the makings of the slightly better 'D' in 2012.”

Producer Mark Schoeck:
“An argument that better personnel makes the better defense doesn’t encompass the full scope of a defensive unit. What does? The numbers. The Steelers were first in total defense and points allowed in 2011. They’ve allowed fewer total yards than the Ravens the past two seasons. Forget their age and the blemishes in their secondary; the Steelers have one of the greatest defensive coordinators in the history of the game to make them the most efficient group in the NFL. The Steelers should advance here.”

Contributing writer Mitch Fraser:
“This is an incredibly close battle between two of the toughest defenses in the past 10 years. I’ll give the slight edge to the Ravens’ 'D.' Although Terrell Suggs is hurt, I think he may be back in time for a playoff push, and although Ray Lewis and Ed Reed are approaching the end of their NFL tenures, they are still two of the savviest and most intelligent football players in the league. They’ve proven they can pick it up a notch in the playoffs, unlike Pittsburgh last year against Denver. Surrounded by young up-and-coming talent and an aggressive, hard-hitting mentality, Lewis and Reed should be able to lead by example and give the Ravens a defensive edge over their division foes in the 2012 season.”
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Old 06-22-2012, 04:44 PM   #2
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Default Re: Best NFL defense: Ravens or Steelers?

El Deebo says Steelers.

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Old 06-22-2012, 11:02 PM   #3
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Default Re: Best NFL defense: Ravens or Steelers?

49rs

I think between the ravens and Steelers it varies year to year. This is our year.
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Old 06-22-2012, 11:06 PM   #4
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Default Re: Best NFL defense: Ravens or Steelers?

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Originally Posted by MACH
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Old 06-23-2012, 01:12 AM   #5
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Default Re: Best NFL defense: Ravens or Steelers?

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Originally Posted by Millers the sh!t View Post
49rs

I think between the ravens and Steelers it varies year to year. This is our year.
Agreed, I think most of thr time it's us but they have had some good years in between. This year is ours and we have the ability to be as good or better then San Francisco.
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Old 06-23-2012, 10:58 AM   #6
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Default Re: Best NFL defense: Ravens or Steelers?

Associate editor Arthur Arkush:
“I am going with the Steelers, but this is easily the most difficult matchup thus far. The biggest reason for my decision is the monster offseason injury of Terrell Suggs, the 2011 NFL Defensive MVP and arguably the most dominant defender in the game. Although the Steelers have had several offseason changes of their own, I think they are better equipped to handle the losses of Aaron Smith and James Farrior with Ziggy Hood and Larry Foote, players who have already proven their worth in this league. Given the task of filling in for Suggs, who hopes to return this season, is rookie Courtney Upshaw, who I think was a great pickup but also a guy who will need time to learn in the NFL. The Ravens have better players coming up the pipeline but Pittsburgh still has the makings of the slightly better 'D' in 2012.” Hey Art, Smith has not been a significant part of the Defense for almost 3 years, i can see you know this topic well????
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Old 06-23-2012, 04:38 PM   #7
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Default Re: Best NFL defense: Ravens or Steelers?

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Originally Posted by mesaSteeler View Post

Senior editor Eric Edholm:
“Even with the loss of Terrell Suggs — and I think he will be back sooner than people realize — the Ravens are the better unit overall, despite last season’s small rankings differences. The Ravens were better in the red zone, they are less dependent on so many 30-somethings, and the young, underrated core of talent gives them the edge in depth. The Ravens are more of a playmaking unit overall and were playing their best ball in the postseason. The Steelers’ defense let the team down in the loss at Denver.”
How can that be the conclusion? They lost a lot more then just Suggs this year and will be taking a step back. I don't know the numbers exactly, but they are not young and with our new editions, they are probably the same age as us. On top of that, age hasn't mattered yet and is being blown out of proportion by analysts (note it's never mentioned about the other older teams). The Ravens were more of a play making defense last year, but we have been even more of a play making defense for the previous 3 or 4 years. Last year was a down year but we will be back in the turnover business again this year, and history is proof of that. As far as the defense letting us down last year, it's true, our CB's and replacement Safety weren't able to play man coverage all day like the game plan called for and we dropped a game to an unorthodox style offense. But how many times in the playoffs has it held? Ike had a game so bad that non Steeler fans that I know thought he threw the game and for the game plan that we were running it killed us, if Ike has his normal game that day we win even though we only had a few starters left playing healthy, or playing at all for that matter. We are the definition of playoff defense, we invented playoff defense, and were the #1 defense on a visibly down year, get that Baltimore shit out of here!
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Old 06-24-2012, 07:56 AM   #8
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Default Re: Best NFL defense: Ravens or Steelers?

my first thought when i read the headline was this : NEITHER

There are a few teams out there now with probable better defenses than either one of these teams, most notably the 49ers.
PIttsburgh's next draft can't come soon enough as it should be linebacker/defensive backfield heavy, although i think we still have one of the better defenses in the league.
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Old 06-24-2012, 05:26 PM   #9
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Default Re: Best NFL defense: Ravens or Steelers?

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Originally Posted by MACH1 View Post
El Deebo says Steelers.

Does James have trouble remembering his own name, never seen anyone tat their own name on themselves.
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Old 06-25-2012, 12:32 PM   #10
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Default Re: Best NFL defense: Ravens or Steelers?

2004: 1st Ranked Defense
2007: 1st Ranked Defense
2008: 1st Ranked Defense
2010: 1st Ranked Defense
2011: 1st Ranked Defense

Why is this question even being asked? Has any other defenseive unit occupied the #1 slot (and most of those years, #1 against the run, pass, and in total yards) for as many years as the Steelers defense?
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