When the Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens take the field Sunday, stat lines, records, injuries, and predictions go out the door.
There is no rivalry in sports less predictable than the Pittsburgh Steelers vs Baltimore Ravens. Whether it’s the 0-3 Steelers vs the 3-0 Ravens, two undefeated teams, the playoffs, first game of the season, heck, this could be an offseason practice, no one has any idea what to expect when Baltimore and Pittsburgh take the field together.
Look at the numbers and this game is split on both sides. Pittsburgh owns the passing game with 700 passing yards, five touchdowns and an interception. compared to Baltimore’s 364 yards, four touchdowns and four interceptions. Rushing the ball is different. The Ravens’ 427 yards and two scores is double the Steelers’ 201 yards and one score.
On the defensive side of the ball, these teams are pretty split. Pittsburgh has allowed less passing yards (410) than Baltimore (681), but the Ravens’ eight interceptions is four-times the Steelers’ two.
Pittsburgh owns the sack competition with 11 quarterback takedowns compared to the Ravens’ eight, but Baltimore has only allowed 336 rushing yards and one score, while the Steelers have given up 368 and four touchdowns.
There’s literally no separation heading into the game – not that it matters. Pittsburgh can come in and intercept four balls and Baltimore can throw four touchdowns. No one has any idea.
To simplify – this is the Steelers vs Ravens. Ravens Week if you will. Fans, coaches and players know that this simple phrase, “Ravens Week,” means everything they know about football goes out the door.
How else do you explain Antonio Brown reaching through what seemed like half a team to win the game after being stopped at the one-yard line? Not the half yard line, either, he literally reached an entire yard to get the ball over the goal line.
You can’t explain this. It’s just the power of Steelers vs Ravens.
So, while you try to mentally prepare yourself for Sunday, just like the rest of us, just remember – you can’t. This is Steelers vs Ravens. The best you can do is get a good night’s sleep the night before, make sure you have a few cold ones from your Saturday with the boys and there are no throwable objects in arm distance.
Outside of that, all you can do is hope.