The (9-5) Pittsburgh Steelers will play the (4-10) Baltimore Ravens Sunday on the road and here are the six biggest storylines currently surrounding the Week 16 game.
Two Killer B’s back for Baltimore – The last time the Steelers played the Ravens back in Week 4 they didn’t have quarterback Ben Roethlisberger or wide receiver Martavis Bryant. Even without those two players the Steelers still should’ve won that game. Roethlisberger will be looking for just his third career win in Baltimore on Sunday and he’s never thrown more than two touchdowns in a game against them on the road. As for Bryant, Sunday will be the first time that he’s played at M&T Bank Stadium.
QB mystery for the Ravens – As of right now, we still don’t know which quarterback will start for the Ravens. While there’s a good chance that Jimmy Clausen will start against the Steelers, the Ravens might want to see Ryan Mallett at some point in their final two games to see if he can potentially be their future backup to Joe Flacco. Mallett, however, hasn’t played a single snap since signing with Baltimore a short time ago.
Clinching scenario – It’s hard to ignore that there’s a clinching scenario for the Steelers on Sunday as a win combined with a loss by the New York Jets to the New England Patriots will put Pittsburgh in the playoffs. As wide open as the AFC seems to be right now due to quarterback issues on other teams, the Steelers would likely be considered a favorite to make it to the AFC Championship game if they can get in.
30 or more a 7th straight game – The Steelers have scored 30 points or more the last six games, extending a franchise record and the longest streak in the NFL of 30 plus point games. Sunday they will be looking to score 30 or more points for 7th-straight time against a Ravens team that has given up 35 and 34 in their last two games.
Cornerback rotation to continue – How much will Antwon Blake play in this game? If things go as expected, he’ll play the first two or three series in both the base and nickel packages before Brandon Boykin starts seeing the field in the nickel. Last Sunday, Blake played all of 5 snaps in the second half and it will be curious to see if his playing time in the final 30 minutes against the Ravens is also very limited.
Balmy in Baltimore – No need to worry about snow or sleet on Sunday as the current forecast is calling for highs in the 70s at M&T Bank Stadium.