Steelers win vs. Ravens shows why Tomlin is one of the best coaches

Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Pittsburgh Steelers are still undefeated after a wild Matchup with the Baltimore Ravens.

The Pittsburgh Steelers were not in control for most of the game. However, the entirety of the game was not as one-sided as many are suggesting. The Ravens first drive ended in a pick 6. However, throughout the majority of the first half, they were rather dominant.

The Pittsburgh Steelers dealt with some major adversity particularly through the first half of the game. The key to the Steelers’ win in Week 8 was not just the turnovers generated, but it was the ability of Mike Tomlin and his staff to make a plethora of adjustments that flipped the entire script of the game.

Adversity was abundant for both teams

Many are going to talk about the injuries to Ronnie Stanley and Tyrie Phillips of the Ravens. The injuries the Steelers were dealing with, however, were more crucial to the Matchup. I’m not trying to make a point that the Steelers injuries were more important from a personal standpoint. It is truly a shame when an athlete goes down with an injury. With that being said, the Steelers’ biggest injury was incredibly important within the flow of the game. You could see the impact the injury to Tyson Alualu was having immediately after his departure. On the Ravens’ second offensive drive, they would march 75 yards down the field and score on a touchdown pass from 6 yards out.

On this 75 yard drive, the Ravens would rush for only 11 total yards. After the second drive, Alualu was not seen much again with what would later be diagnosed as an MCL sprain. They would go from allowing the Ravens to acquire just 25 rushing yards through a little over halfway through the first quarter, to totaling 192 yards rushing in the first half. This does also include Lamar Jackson scrambles, as it is also adjusted for the loss of yards from sacks as well.

This really showed how important Alualu is on the interior of the defensive line. He has been back and forth with Aaron Donald for most of the season for the highest overall PFF grade for interior d-linemen and he was firmly on top of all defenders in the league in their run defense grade throughout the season to this point.