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Is this more than just a loss?

Posted Nov 19, 2012

This one took some getting over, to the extent that there was disagreement late Sunday night/early Monday morning as to the severity of the blow the Steelers had absorbed via their 13-10 loss to Baltimore at Heinz Field.

“I don’t know if it’s a setback; it’s a loss,” quarterback Byron Leftwich assessed. “I don’t really want to look at it as a setback.

“We just have to find a way to win next week.”

The Steelers couldn’t find a way with Leftwich replacing Ben Roethlisberger (shoulder/rib) in the first of two meetings this season with Baltimore. The Ravens’ victory improved their record to 8-2 and moved them two games ahead of the second-place Steelers (6-4) in the AFC North Division with six regular season games remaining.

“It’s not too big of a setback,” linebacker James Harrison maintained. “It definitely is a setback, but we still have a lot of division games left and we’ll get an opportunity to see them again.”

The Steelers-Ravens rematch is scheduled for Dec. 2 in Baltimore. Up first for the Steelers, though, is a game this coming Sunday at Cleveland. And to linebacker Larry Foote, the Browns encounter will begin a series of must-win games the rest of the way.

“It’s our fourth loss so every game here on out we can’t lose,” Foote said. “We gotta have that mentality.”

The Steelers fell to 6-4 despite statistical superiority over the Ravens in first downs (17-12), rushing yards (134-47), passing yards (201-164), total net yards (311-200) and time of possession (32:54-27:09).

Baltimore didn’t commit a turnover and managed a pair of takeaways at the Steelers’ expense, both of which resulted in field goals.

The Ravens’ only touchdown came via a 63-yard punt return by Jacoby Jones.

“When you play good-on-good you can’t turn the ball over,” Leftwich said. “And you just gotta make more plays than that. We just gotta do a better job of making more plays than that.

“We will respond. It’s frustrating but at the same time we understand we have another game coming up on Sunday. We’ll be ready to roll.”

The Steelers scored on a 31-yard touchdown run by Leftwich and a 22-yard Shaun Suisham field goal.

“For whatever reason we didn’t get it going on offense,” tight end Heath Miller said. “Give their defense credit, but our defense played an awesome game. This kind of falls on our shoulders, we have to put more points on the board and come through for our team.”

Added wide receiver Mike Wallace: “I don’t feel like it’s that big. It’s a division game, obviously, we wanted to win. But we’re still in good position. I feel like we have a team that’s full of fighters. We’re gonna still do exactly what we’re doing, run our game plan, and we’re gonna get back and fight next week.

“We’re going to come out, give our best efforts, and we’re going to continue to be the team we’ve been. I don’t think this is going to do anything to us. We have them again in two weeks.

“It’s not like we came out and just blew the game. We just lost,” added Wallace. “We didn’t get it done, but we’re gonna keep fighting. We’re the Steelers, baby.”

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