The Pittsburgh Steelers and Baltimore Ravens meet for the second time this season. The Ravens had their best win of the season the last time they came across the Steelers. It was a statement win for the Ravens at Heinz Field on Sunday Night Football in Week 4. Pittsburgh haven’t lost a game since then, with three wins in a row. Meanwhile, Baltimore have gone 1-3, with just one win over the Titans since that game.
So, the recent evidence certainly suggests that the Steelers are on the up and the Ravens are falling. People tend to overreact to things, like the Antonio Brown and Le’Veon Bell situation was going to tear the team apart. The media does a good job of blowing everything out of proportion, and I think by now, most have forgotten about Brown bickering. Winning football games will do that.
Naturally, the public is going to be all over the Steelers in this game. Or, at least, that’s likely how the betting action will unfold. Is it the right bet, though? People have forgotten pretty quickly how the Ravens’ defense ran the table against the Steelers in the first meeting. However, it’s easy to side with the Steelers after watching the last couple of weeks.
The Ravens are coming off a blowout loss to the Panthers in Carolina, while the Steelers blew out the Falcons, a touchdown win over the Bengals, and another blowout win vs the Browns last week. Baltimore frustratingly didn’t have a chance to go to overtime against New Orleans two weeks ago. A rare XP miss by Justin Tucker preserved a 24-23 win for the Saints. The tough loss seemed to impact them the following week in Carolina, because a lot of were expected it to be a competitive game. They can wash it all away with a sweep of the Steelers on Sunday. Head below for our free Steelers vs. Ravens pick.
Pittsburgh Steelers vs. Baltimore Ravens NFL Week 9 Betting Odds:
vs. Ravens -2.5(-110)
Betting odds provided by Sportsbetting.ag
Steelers vs. Ravens Pick:
Roethlisberger was held to 274 yards with a touchdown and interception in his first meeting with the Ravens’ defense. It was his second lowest quarterback rating this season. The best effort came from the Baltimore run stoppers. James Conner is coming off a monster effort last week, with 146 yards and 2 touchdowns rushing. He also hauled in 5 balls in the passing game for 66 yards.
That was not the case when it was the Ravens’ defense. Conner rushed for just 19 yards on 9 carries. Despite Carolina sticking it them last week, the Ravens still have a talented defense. They held one of the best quarterbacks in the NFL in check in the prior week, and have looked strong in every other week except against the Bengals.
Even with the lackluster performance against the Panthers, the Ravens still rank as the best defense in the NFL statistically. It’s not really close either. Baltimore are the only team in the league who are allowing less than 300 yards per game. They’re giving up just 195.6 yards through the air. The Steelers are an obvious challenge here. They’ve already neutralized them once, but it isn’t easy to contain Roethlisberger twice.
Joe Flacco has thrown for 12 touchdowns and 6 interceptions with a 61.1% completion rate. With their defense, Flacco playing an average game should be enough to get them into the playoffs. However, they suddenly find themselves with a record of 4-4. Following Sunday, the best defense in the NFL could be under .500.
The perception here is that the Steelers are playing much better football and it should continue in Baltimore. However, the Ravens are still a team who came a play or two away from beating the Saints just two weeks ago, and have a talented defense who likely respond at home after getting torched a week ago. They’ve allowed only 13.6 points per game in Baltimore. Note that the Ravens are 6-1-1 ATS against the Steelers in their last eight meetings. A lot of people are writing the Ravens off already, but don’t be surprised if they pull everyone back in with a much better performance on Sunday.