Steeler loss shows importance of bye week

January 09, 2012 | Paul Hoke

I, along with most of Ravens Nation, reveled in the Pittsburgh Steelers 29-23 Wild Card loss to the Denver Broncos at the hands of Tim Tebow.  The battered, bruised, and more importantly, fatigued Pittsburgh team looked as if they had simply run out of gas by game’s end.

And I loved every minute of it.  Watching Ben Roethlisberger hobble around, and seeing the Pittsburgh secondary look old and slow made my Sunday night, almost as much as a Ravens’ win would have.  But it also showed, to me, just how important it was for the Baltimore Ravens to secure that first round bye, and not be the team to head on the road for the Wild Card game in Denver.

Imagine, if you will, if the Ravens had lost to Cincinnati in the final game of the regular season.  They were the walking wounded coming out of that game.  If they had to go on the road in the playoffs, again, I certainly would not like their chances.  That week off, coupled with a home playoff game is going to make the difference, should the Ravens now go on a run to the Super Bowl.  I can guarantee that had they entered the postseason yet again as a wild card and fifth seed, this would have been a short postseason trip for our Ravens.

All in all, I have done everything I can to soak in last week and enjoy the fact that the Ravens were able to rest and relax and get ready for this Sunday’s game against the Houston Texans.  Let’s paint the town purple this week, and bring all our Raven passion out as we get ready for one of the most important football games in this city, in a long time.

Go RAVENS!!!!!