The Ravens destroyed the Steelers on September 11th, 2011 in all aspects of the game. The Steelers won the toss but differed. On the Ravens first play from scrimmage, Ray Rice broke a 30 plus yard run. Two plays later Joe Flacco threw a touchdown to Anquan Boldin. The score was 7-0, 1 minute and 30 seconds into the game.
The Steelers didn’t score until the second quarter and many people thought that the Steelers had hit their stride. They were down 14-7 and then the Ravens scored another touchdown before the half. They went in leading 21-7, just like last years playoff game. Ravens fans had that in the back of their mind, that they would blow the lead just like last years playoff game.
The Ravens never looked back, after the half they scored a touchdown and on the extra point, Sam Koch took the snap and ran into the end zone converting a two point conversion. One might ask, why didn’t the Ravens save that for later in the year? I will address that later.
The Ravens were up 29-7 and before the end of the game, Billy Cundiff hit two field goals. The Ravens finished their beat down on the Steelers 35-7. Roethlisberger’s seven game winning streak versus the Ravens was snapped and Joe Flacco beat Roethlisberger for the first time since entering the league four years ago. The Ravens didn’t just beat the Steelers, they blew them out.
Terrell Suggs sacked Ben Roethlisberger three times and the defense had pressure on him all day. The Ravens defense forced 7 turnovers. Reed had two interceptions and Ray Lewis had an interception. The pressure got to Roethlisberger and it impacted him all day. He fumbled two times and lost it both times. Ngata destroyed Rashard Mendenhall and forced a fumble which he recovered. Ben didn’t get the ball clean and Ngata bursted through the line. He had one of the hardest hits in Ravens history. Ray Lewis had a forced fumble which was the seventh turnover of the game.
The fake field goal. Why would the Ravens do that when winning by 20 points? They did it to just pour it on the Steelers. I don’t know if it was Koch’s call or the coaches but it really took all the life out of Pittsburgh fans. I think that it would have been good to save that for when they really needed it but that play can still work.
On multiple occasions there were scuffles with many players. Some Ravens players in the scuffles were Ray Rice, Michael Oher, Marshall Yanda, Bernard Pollard, Torrey Smith, Vonte Leach, and many others. Some of the Steelers in the scuffles were Hines Ward (obviously), Troy Polamalu, Casey Hampton, Ike Taylor, James Harrison, and many others.
The main one was with the Ravens offense and the Steelers defense. At one point, Michael Oher was taken down by Ike Taylor and a Steelers linebacker. This resulted in a referee getting knocked down. In the same play, there was a scuffle with the Steelers defense and the Ravens offense. Troy Polamalu took down Ray Rice after he was taken off of a pile by Yanda. Polamalu was then pulled off of Rice, but before he was, he and other Steelers and Ravens jumped on to try and help their star players. Joe Flacco stayed out of this which is good because the Ravens didn’t need their franchise quarterback getting hurt.
Later in the game the Steelers offense and the Ravens defense got into it. One Raven pushed a Steelers player into the ref, who fell down, while Hines Ward pleaded that the Raven should be ejected. The Ravens banged up Big Ben all game and they got their shots on Hines Ward. Ward was coming off of the line on a play and Jarrett Johnson decked him within five yards. There was no flag thrown and Ward was upset about that.
The Ravens showed the Steelers that they were here to play and contest for the AFC North. The Ravens beat the Steelers on all aspects of the game. The Steelers know that the Ravens can beat them now, and this game will stick with them for a few weeks. The Ravens have a chance to win the AFC North if they can play like they did against the Steelers. If they play that well, then it will be tough to beat them.