One of the most physical rivalries in the history of the NFL, the Baltimore Ravens and the Pittsburgh Steelers often fight over divisional leadership. This Sunday 20th though, they may not be playing so much to see who gets first place but to see who isn’t last. Granted, the Ravens aren’t doing as bad as the Steelers, but then again Baltimore isn’t just any team; a lot more is expected of them, even if they hadn’t won the Super Bowl last year. The offshore betting spread favors Pittsburgh by one point, but the Ravens may still be the favorites anyway.
Baltimore is coming off a loss versus the Green Bay Packers that put their record at 3-3. Conversely, the Steelers beat the Jets at New York on Week 6, putting a stop to a 4-game losing streak. On Sunday they will host the Ravens, but here’s the deal; more often than not, home teams are assigned a 3-point advantage by default. In light of that, the offshore betting 1-point spread favoring Pittsburgh begins to look even thinner than it already is. The Steelers’ running game has been conspicuous by its absence, but that has been slowly changing since Le’Veon Bell came back from his pre-season foot sprain injury; slowly being the keyword. Still, he may be able to help Ben Roethslinger and Antonio Brown on the offensive.
As for the Ravens, one has to wonder whether their front office is already ruing the day they let eight starters go (a record for a Super Bowl champion) just to keep Joe Flacco around. That’s probably a moot point, though; if it had been the other way around, they’d probably be struggling anyway. And it’s not that Flacco hasn’t held up his end of the bargain either, but football isn’t a one man show, unless your last name happens to be Manning or Brady. On the other hand, Jacoby Jones is back and Torrey Smith has been putting on great performances. All in all, we may not see too many summersaults on Baltimore’s endzone, and not just because Steelers’ head coach Mike Tomlin banned them.