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Ravens vs. Steelers final recap: Baltimore falls to 4-5 with third straight loss

Pittsburgh Steelers v Baltimore Ravens Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

The 4-4 Baltimore Ravens hosted their arch-rivals, the 4-2-1 Pittsburgh Steelers in a must-win divisional game.

Pittsburgh won the opening coin toss and deferred, giving Baltimore the ball to start the game. The drive ended in a punt after a pair of first downs, including a 20-yard catch from rookie tight end Mark Andrews on 3rd-and-9.

The Steelers were forced to punt the ball on their first drive as well, despite several solid runs from running back James Conner.

The Ravens put the first points on the board on the next drive with a Justin Tucker 23-yard field goal, and the highlight of the drive was a 30-yard catch by Chris Moore. However, quarterback Joe Flacco missed a wide open Lamar Jackson for an easy touchdown on 3rd-and-goal.

Unfortunately, Pittsburgh responded with points of their own, albeit with a touchdown instead of a field goal. It was James Conner who found the end zone with a seven-yard run, putting the Steelers up 7-3.

Following a punt from Baltimore’s offense, Pittsburgh found the end zone once again, this time Ben Roethlisberger was able to find wide receiver Antonio Brown for a six-yard touchdown pass, extending their lead to 14-3.

With the first half winding down, the Ravens were able to cut into the lead with another field goal. A defensive pass interference penalty against John Brown on a deep pass was the crucial play on the drive, giving Baltimore 33 yards. Once again, Flacco missed a wide open receiver for a touchdown, this time Michael Crabtree when he under threw him.

The Steelers opened the second half with a long drive that lasted 8:14 and ended in a touchdown on a quarterback sneak. Pittsburgh exploited the middle of the Ravens defense all day long with short underneath throws and crossing routes, which was on full display for this drive. Still, a missed extra point kept the score at 20-6.

This time, Baltimore was able to rally for a touchdown in response. Running back Alex Collins ran it in for a one-yard touchdown, cutting the lead down to 20-13.

The offense was unable to keep their foot on the gas, going three-and-out on their next drive after forcing a three-and-out on defense. The Steelers were then able to put together another clock-killing drive, lasting 5:49 and ending in a field goal to make it a two-possession game again.

The Ravens were able to notch one last field goal, making the final score 23-16. Flacco had a poor performance, and the defense was unable to contain Conner on the ground or through the air. Even when Roethlisberger left the game with a shoulder injury for a play, backup quarterback Joshua Dobbs converted a 2nd-and-20 with a 22-yard pass to JuJu Smith-Schuster.

Flacco finished the day 23/37 for 209 yards, zero touchdowns and no interceptions. Collins was the leading rusher with only 35 yards on nine carries. Willie Snead IV led all receivers with 58 yards on seven catches with Andrews just behind him with 50 yards on three catches. The defense allowed 405 yards while forcing zero turnovers and sacking Roethlisberger only once.

Baltimore has a chance to get healthy with a bye week now. But At 4-5, there will be speculation of incoming changes in the organization.