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Week Four Steelers Vs Ravens I Second Half Notes And Observations

The Pittsburgh Steelers suffered their second loss of the season on Thursday night at the hands of the Baltimore Ravens, dropping a fourth-quarter lead and coming up short in overtime to the tune of a 23-20 final score. Below are my notes and observations of the first half of the game.

  • The Ravens’ second half started as well as the first half ended for them. on first down, Cameron Heyward got a hustle strip sack on Joe Flacco, which was recovered by Ross Cockrell at the 26-yard line.
  • On the first play of the half, however, DeAngelo Williams was swarmed for a loss of three on just his second carry of the night. Michael Vick scrambled to convert on third and seven.
  • On third down from the eight-yard line, Vick found Darrius Heyward-Bey in the far left corner of the end zone, who just barely caught the ball, initial pinned underneath his left arm to his side.
  • The Ravens responded well, however, embarking on a prolonged drive that was capped off in the end zone to bring the deficit back down to six points.
  • It started with a long gainer from Justin Forsett up the middle, a hole that Vince Williams failed to fill. Only an open-field tackle from Mike Mitchell saved it from being a 77-yard touchdown.
  • A missed tackle from Antwon Blake on the following play resulted in another sizable gain into field goal range, with Kamar Aiken scoring over the head of Cockrell for seven points a couple of plays later.
  • The Steelers’ own response drive was a disaster after Antonio Brown was unable to get his second foot inbounds on a sizable would-be reception on first down. Vick proceeded to take a pair of sacks, neither of which made much sense, to set Jordan Berry up in his own end zone.
  • On fourth and 23 from the seven, Berry’s punt traveled about 41 yards to the 48, but with meager hang time, the Ravens were able to rattle off a return to the 33-yard line, adding on five more due to a penalty on the Steelers.
  • The home team got a break, however, when the Ravens tried to run a fake field goal, which they stopped, from about the 20-yard line, taking three points off the board.
  • Not that the Steelers were able to take advantage, quickly going three-and-out, with Vick taking another sack on third and long. In fairness to Vick, the officials missed a facemask penalty on the sack, a call I believe he is old enough to get.
  • Pittsburgh would have responded with a three-and-out on defense, but the Ravens converted on fourth and one, aided in part by a missed tackle from Blake on a tight end much bigger than he. The opportunity for another third-down stop was wiped out by a penalty on Blake in the secondary, which helped net the Ravens a field goal.
  • Looking to respond, Vick found Heyward-Bey, who skied for a 12-yard reception to start the ensuing drive. Three plays later, however, he through to the receiver well short of the first down for a short loss, sending Berry back onto the field.
  • The punt was downed at the 12 for 51 yards, but only because the returner let it bounce rather than field it for fair catch it several yards upfield.
  • Forsett managed to rip off another long run on the drive, but the Ravens failed to capitalize, getting stopped on second and two, third and one, and then fourth and inches for a turnover on downs at the Steelers’ 42-yard line.
  • In spite of the fact that Le’Veon Bell got the drive started with an explosive run to the 36-yard line, the Steelers also failed to capitalize on their opportunities and field position.
  • Vick fumbled the snap on the next play, and then Josh Scobee missed a 49-yard field goal wide left after Sammie Coates could not handle a third-down pass.
  • The Ravens took over with 2:24 to play and one timeout at the 34-yard line, but the defense stepped up to force three straight incompletions and then a sack from James Harrison on fourth down, giving the ball back to the offense at the 29 with 2:04 to play. The game should have been won here.
  • After three straight runs from Bell for about six yards, Scobee lined up for a 41-yard field goal that he hooked just outside the left goal post. As a result, the Ravens got the ball at the missed spot, from the 31.
  • On third and 10 from the 48, Flacco found Kamark Aike open in front of Blake as he stood in the pocket to take a hit from the blitzing William Gay, into field goal territory.
  • After picking up eight insurance yards, Justin Tucker sent the game into overtime.
  • The Steelers won the toss, with Dri Archer returner the opening kick to the 31-yard line to get things started.
  • Bell somehow found room on the power counter late in the play as he got to the sideline and raced upfield for 21 yards to the 47.
  • Bell got eight yards on two plays to the 39 before Vick took to the air, throwing wide of Brown on a pass that was nearly intercepted. Mike Tomlin chose to go for it on fourth down, rolling Vick out to the short side of the field for a scramble, on which he was bottled up for no gain.
  • The defense responded with yet another three and out, with Mike Mitchell coming up with the hit to jar the ball loose from the receiver’s grasp on third and eight, injuring himself on the play.
  • And Brown did his part on the punt return, after initially muffing it at the 10. He picked it up at the 13 and returned it out to the 41-yard line.
  • After a completion to Brown to the 42-yard line, however, the drive stalled again. From the 34, Bell was tackled after a one-yard gain on a screen pass. They then put the ball in Vick’s hands on fourth and one, and he proceed to miss an easy pitch-and-catch pass to Brown that should have been a four-yard gain, which he sailed over his head.
  • The defense was asked to bail out the offense one too many times in this game, and they ultimately relented in overtime as the Ravens drove from their own 33 to the Steelers’ 35 in seven plays, with Tucker hitting the 52-yard game-winning field goal on fourth and one.
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