The Pittsburgh Steelers survived a bloodbath of injuries and inconsistent play to beat the rival Baltimore Ravens 23-20 Monday Night. Jeff Reed nailed home a 46 yard field on the Steelers first possession in overtime. The game was marred with injuries for both teams, but more so for the Steelers. Rookie running back Rashard Mendenhall will be lost for the season with a fractured shoulder as will right guard Kendall Simmons with a torn Achilles tendon. Backup linebacker and special teamer Andre Frazier was carted off the field on a stretcher when he was injured on the games opening kickoff. Frazier appears to escaped a serious spinal injury and was in the locker room after the game. Backup running back Carey Davis left the game early on in the fourth quarter with a sprained ankle and will be re-evaluated on Tuesday. With starter Willie Parker sidelined with a knee injury and Mendenhall and Davis injured, the Steelers turned to Mewelde Moore to finish the game. Moore only had 13 yards on 8 carries, but had 3 key catches for 37 yards, the last being a 7 yard game to set up the game winng field goal.
The Steelers will likely call up Gary Russell from the practice squad and will likely sign a free agent running back to add depth. Darnell Stapleton replaced thew injured Simmons and was playing with the first-team offense for the first time in his two years. The Steelers will also likely scout the free agent list for guards to sign as well.
The Steeler defense buckled down in the second half and pressured Ravens rookie quarterback Joe Flacco late in the game. The Steeler offense was a slow starter after an opening drive that resulted in a field goal, the offense didn\’t get back on track until midway through the 3rd quarter. Ben Roethlisberger was 14 for 24 in pass attempts for 191 yards and one touchdown. The offensive line was leaky all night, but played better once the Steelers went to a no huddle hurry up offense.
The Steelers now lead the division with 3 wins and one lost and must now travel to Jacksonville on a short week to play the Jaguars.