clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Matchups to watch in Thursday's Ravens-Steelers game

Performances to highlight for Thursday's game and other things to watch for.

Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

Jimmy Smith vs. Antonio Brown

You're probably starting to notice a common occurrence here. Jimmy Smith vs. (insert receiver here). Well, that's going to be a common theme this season, as the Ravens play many opponents with Pro Bowl caliber receivers (Falcons, Colts, Saints, Bengals, Chargers, Buccaneers, Dolphins and Steelers) and Smith's performance against said receivers will play a part in the success of the Ravens' 2014 season and his own bank account. That being said, Antonio Brown was an All-Pro receiver in 2013, but Smith held A.J. Green to three catches when they lined up against each other on Sunday, so he should be up to the task.

Ravens special teams vs. Antonio Brown*

Antonio Brown was a Pro Bowl punt returner in 2013, so the Ravens punt coverage will have to try and make sure that he doesn't get the chance to return any punts.

Ravens run game

Justin Forsett had 6.3 yards per carry on Sunday and the Steelers struggled to stop the Browns run game. The Ravens should run the ball early and often vs. the Steelers. But even with Forsett shining against Cincinnati, the Ravens have yet to name a new starting running back.

Terrell Suggs and Elvis Dumervil vs. Kelvin Beachum and Marcus Gilbert

The Steelers offensive tackles had a difficult time vs. the Browns on Sunday, allowing quarterback Ben Roethlisberger to get sacked four times. Terrell Suggs and Elvis Dumervil should take advantage of that.

Torrey Smith vs. Ike Taylor

Torrey Smith has usually gone up against Ike Taylor during his career and I don't see that changing on Thursday. Torrey Smith beating Ike Taylor should be a key to victory.

Ravens offense vs. Steelers defense

The Steelers defense struggled against Brian Hoyer, the Browns no-name wide receivers, and Isaiah Crowell and Terrence West. The Ravens offense should be able to exploit the youth on Pittsburgh's defense.