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Baltimore Ravens vs. Pittsburgh Steelers: Was it worth it Ravens fans?

Ravens fans had resigned themselves to losing this season to gain in the future. But beating the Steelers elicits all sorts of emotions that should overshadow the feelings of disappointment at falling outside the top 5 in the 2016 draft.

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Win in the short term, lose in the long term. This is the thought that comes to mind for Ravens fans with each win in the lost 2015 season. But with the Pittsburgh Steelers in town fighting for a playoffs spot, the rivalry also plays a crucial role in our minds. Can we as Ravens fans ever root for a loss to the Steelers in the baddest rivalry in professional football?

Either way, what is done is done. The Ravens showed up and finished off a sweep of the Steelers, demonstrating more heart and executing better, despite a litany of penalties. Barring most of the teams ahead of the Ravens winning in week 17, any hopes for uber-talented defensive end Joey Bosa are gone. The same can be said for Laremy Tunsil, proclaimed by some as the next Jonathan Ogden. Both will be gone in the first five picks. Defensive backs Jalen Ramsey and Vernon Hargraeves are still possibilities, but no sure thing to be available at the eighth overall pick, where the Ravens are currently slotted.

While the resulting effect on the draft position is disappointing, beating the Steelers always has a special feel to it. The rivalry is unparalleled in the NFL, and both teams have benefited over the past decade. They say steel sharpens steel, and these two teams have each helped each other be ready for the playoffs each year. The Steelers boast 3 Super Bowl appearances and 2 wins, and the Ravens sport a stellar 10-5 playoffs record and 1 Super Bowl win with Joe Flacco at the helm.

While the games are always close in score, the Ravens seem to currently hold the upper hand with wins in 4 of the last 5 matchups, including the last playoff game. With this season a thorough disappointment, the Ravens will have to enjoy the sweep and hope they can carry over the momentum to next season when the games will hopefully contribute to a playoff berth.

Until then, I have to say the win was well worth it. A good general manager like Ozzie Newsome will pick a great player for us, whether at 3 or 8 or 15. Terrell Suggs, Haloti Ngata, and Joe Flacco are all players he has picked for the Ravens between pick 10 and 20. Barring a week 17 win, this will still be the Ravens highest pick since 2000, when they selected Jamal Lewis at #5. At the end of the day, a sweep is rare in this rivalry, so let's enjoy this one!