Matt Canada and the Steelers offense can thank their lucky stars that Pittsburgh was able to emerge victorious in Week 5 against the Baltimore Ravens. Following a dreadful performance from the offense last Week in Houston, the Steelers needed to take a big step forward against the Baltimore Ravens. They did not.
From their very first drive of the game, Pittsburgh looked incredibly flat. Kenny Pickett and company were forced to punt the ball away on three straight possessions to open the game. When the defense did create a takeaway to put the team in an advantageous situation, the offense failed to capitalize.
As usual, this team relied on the defense to bail them out. T.J. Watt helped hold QB Lamar Jackson in check all game (though the Ravens narrowly missed on a few massive plays down the field). Pittsburgh's special teams was up and down. A blocked punt that resulted in a safety gave the Steelers two free points. However, Gunner Olszewski nearly fumbled the game away.
Joey Porter Jr. should get the game ball for this contest. After Olszewski's fumble, the Ravens had a chance to put the game on ice. Fortunately, Porter saved seven points with an incredible interception in the endzone late in the fourth quarter.
Following this, the offense was finally able to string together a touchdown. Late in the fourth quarter, Pickett hit WR George Pickens in stride on a 41-yard play down the right sideline for their first and only touchdown of the game. This gave Pittsburgh a 14-10 lead.
The Ravens had one last chance to answer back with a score of their own -- needing a score with just 1:17 remaining in the game. After one big passing play down the field, it was Alex Highsmith and T.J. Watt who, once again, came up big in the clutch. Highsmith forced a fumble on Jackson and Watt scooped it up.
Steelers defense bails out the offense in the win
While Pittsburgh's offense finally showed some signs of life with under two minutes remaining in the game, there's no question that the defense and special teams bailed them out in this contest. The Steelers would have never been in a position to win without several big defensive and special teams plays -- the biggest being the Joey Porter interception.
The Steelers officially capped off the victory with a T.J. Watt sack on Lamar Jackson on 4th down (what else).
This offense still has a ton of work to do. They scored just 15 points points in the 17-10 victory. Additionally, the offense finished with just 289 total yards and 4.4 yards per attempt, per ESPN stats. It might not have been the prettiest win, but the Pittsburgh Steelers are (somehow) in first place in the AFC North entering their Week 6 bye.