THE OPPOSITION: Pittsburgh Steelers

Baltimore Ravens v Pittsburgh Steelers

If you missed the Pittsburgh Steelers playoff game last season, it’s probably because they did not have one.

In a season that the Ravens hoisted the Lombardi Trophy, the Steelers finished 8-8 and missed the playoffs for the second time in the last four seasons. Could it possibly get any better for Ravens fans?

Seventh year Head Coach Mike Tomlin and his Steelers have a tough task at hand, as they have lost major contributors on both offense and defense heading into 2013. We know that Baltimore and Pittsburgh rival in plenty of areas, and the most recent is in number of new faces.

During the first moments of free agency, wide receiver Mike Wallace took his “talents to South Beach” and signed a five-year $60 million contract with the Miami Dolphins. Wallace was arguably overpaid by Dolphins ownership, but after the Steelers committed $42.5 million to Antonio Brown, who only had five touchdowns in 2012 and two touchdowns in 2011, the chances of Wallace remaining in Pittsburgh went from slim to none very quickly.

Can we go back to that for a moment?

$42.5 million for seven touchdowns in three seasons — Wow!

On the defensive side of the ball, had it not been for the Elvis Dumervil fax machine fiasco, linebacker James Harrison may have ended up in a Ravens uniform. However, even though he didn’t go to Baltimore, “Debo” indeed left the Steel City after eight seasons with the Steelers, moving from western Pennsylvania to Cincinnati, where he signed a two-year contract worth $4.45 million.

What to watch for:

Look Out: After the combination of Harrison’s decline in production, as well as a disappointing season from LaMarr Woodley, the Steelers immediately addressed their needs by drafting Georgia Bulldog Jarvis Jones with their 17th pick in the first round. Jones is a linebacker coming from a very good program, and he will be able to learn from veterans. He could step in and immediately improve the Pittsburgh pass rush.

Not So Hot: The largest void for the Steelers is at the running back position. Injuries cannot be predicted, but they can run an offense down, literally. And with an injury-prone quarterback in Ben Roethlisberger, the running game is crucial. The guys currently on the roster did not light up the turf last season, so the Steelers drafted Michigan State running back Le’Veon Bell in the second round. Along with drafting Bell, they also signed five-year veteran LaRod Stephens-Howling.  In addition, veteran Rashard Mendenhall, the Steelers’ first-round pick in 2008, left in free agency for Arizona.

The Raven Edge: Pass Rush vs. New O-Line: Terrell Suggs has made it known that, “God can have [Roethlisberger’s] soul, but his ass belongs to me.”

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With an able-bodied Suggs and the addition of Dumervil, Ben should once again be shaking in his boots when he looks across the line of scrimmage and sees purple. The new offensive line in Pittsburgh will have a tough task, as they are young and inexperienced (in fact, no player on the line has more than four years’ experience.) The Steelers also made a change at the offensive line coach position, hiring Jack Bicknell Jr., who was the O-line coach for the Kansas City Chiefs in 2012.

The Ravens and Steelers split their games last season, and this year the rivalry will conclude – at least for the regular season – on Thanksgiving night. As Orioles center fielder Adam Jones would say, “stay hungry.”

Ravens @ Pittsburgh week 7: October 20 at 4:25

Pittsburgh @Ravens week 13: November 28 at 8:30

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About Tyler Seabolt

Tyler Seabolt
A recent graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Tyler is now furthering his knowledge of the Communications Media field with Russell Street Report. Tyler is very passionate about the Ravens, Orioles, Terps, and anything related to the great state of Maryland. He enjoys keeping up with the most recent news...more

22 Raves on “THE OPPOSITION: Pittsburgh Steelers

  1. g money on said:

    I’m not concerned about the Steelers this year. I think we take both games from them. they will be battling Cleveland for 3rd in the division this season.

    • Tyler on said:

      I’m with you. I think the steelers will be an irrelevant team for the foreseeable future. Ben is the only one carrying that team, and he’s only got a few productive years left(if he stays healthy, that is) so like you(and everyone else in the league) I’m not worried about the steelers.

    • Tyler on said:

      I’m with you. I think the steelers will be an irrelevant team for the foreseeable future. Ben is the only one carrying that team, and he’s only got a few productive years left, if he stays healthy. So like you, and everyone else in the league, I’m not worried about the steelers.

  2. Anonymous on said:

    So Can’t Wait For season To Start I Think We Gonna Win The Division Again & Hopefully A Home Playoff GamE EVen A Bye Would Be nice

  3. Big Perm on said:

    This is the most excited I’ve been for the upcoming season that I can remember. I have no concern about the steelers. We rule this division now. It is ours and will be for a long time.

  4. Anonymous on said:

    The steelers made the playoffs in two of the last three seasons, not the other way around. In 2012 they missed, prior to that, they lost to Denver in 2011, they lost to the packers in 2010.

  5. Bandzz on said:

    I wouldn’t underestimate the steelers…I think we will sweep but it won’t be pretty. This all depends on how we come out of training camp..I’m cringing as each day approaches because we also tend to lose players during training camp…Just hope we don’t lose Dumervile or Torry Smith or Ngata etc…those kinds of injuries would be game changers

  6. Paul Lukoskie on said:

    Any Given Sunday.

    The Steelers could absolutely beat the Ravens. One of the issues with Baltimore over the last few years has been playing down to lesser teams; especially on the road. The Chiefs, Titans, Jags, and Redskins come to mind.

    As long as #7 is under center for the Black-n-Yeller, they’ll be competitive.

    • Big Perm on said:

      Sounds like a Steelers fan. I think having “#7″ under center helps the Ravens. We own ben. The dude is a liability. And now he’s fat and out of shape. What do you think he’ll do when he looks across and sees the Ravens front seven. We are a different team with an explosive offense and much younger/faster defense. Playing down to lesser teams is something the Ravens used to do. A thing of the past.

      • g money on said:

        anybody can beat anybody on Sunday, except for the steelers beating the ravens. that ain’t gonna happen. believe that. The only people that Ben scares are unwilling women.

  7. Steel City all day on said:

    You’ll said that with our back up QB in your house. We are not worried about the RAT BIRDs at all, see you soon. OH and Catch up.

      • Big Perm on said:

        Laughable. You would NEVER catch me looking at a steelers fan site. Oh and we’ll catch up. But it won’t take us 70 years.

        • g money on said:

          of course you wouldn’t look at a steeler fan site. it would be in some caveman style language anyway, using shapes and objects to convey their points.

  8. Anonymous on said:

    most of these squeeler “fans” couldn’t name their QB that was before Rapistburger. what a collection of a holes

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