Postgame Takes

Steelers defeat Ravens, 26-9

The Steelers took an early lead and never looked back, defeating the Baltimore Ravens, 26-9. The win improves the Steelers record to 3-1, and has them 2-0 in the early going in the AFC North.

"It's great to enjoy this victory in a hostile environment, AFC North football," said Coach Mike Tomlin. "I thought our guys responded in an appropriate way, not only to the environment and the opponent, but largely to the challenge all week. Just being able to stay focused, stay together, that is what professionals are called to do."

Game action photos from the Pittsburgh Steelers' Week 4 game against the Baltimore Ravens.

Running back Le'Veon Bell carried the ball 35 times for 144 yards and two touchdowns. It was Bell's first 100-yard game of the season, and his 15th of his career. Bell also added four receptions for 42 yards.

The Steelers defense was dominant, with two interceptions, a forced fumble and recovery, and four sacks, including two by Cameron Heyward, and kept the Ravens from getting any continuity on offense. Ryan Shazier was on fire, with 11 tackles, including 10 solo stops, and had one of the interceptions and three pass defenses.

The Ravens opened the game with a 23-yard run by Alex Collins, but would only manage five more net yards rushing in the first half. The defense immediately stepped up after that first play, stopping the Ravens on their opening drive.

A balanced offensive attack set the stage early for the Steelers. Ben Roethlisberger was four-for-four for 49 yards on the opening drive, while Le'Veon Bell rushed for 36 yards and James Conner added 21 yards. The Steelers couldn't punch it into the end zone, but Chris Boswell's 30-yard field goal gave the Steelers an early 3-0 lead, and took 10:23 off the clock, the longest any NFL team has held the ball on a drive all season.

After the Steelers defense delivered consecutive three-and-outs, the offense went back to work. Roethlisberger hit JuJu Smith-Schuster for a 19-yard gain to the Raven's 12-yard line, but on the next play a personal foul call on Alejandro Villanueva pushed them back to the 31-yard line. That was as close as they would get, and the Steelers had to settle for another Boswell field goal, this one from 49 yards out to extend the lead to 6-0.

Another stellar showing by the defense gave the ball right back. Cameron Heyward hit Collins, knocking the ball free, and recovered it at the Ravens' 28-yard line.

This time, the Steelers would find the end zone. After a false start on David DeCastro, Roethlisberger hit Jesse James for 18 yards. Conner rattled off a seven-yard run, and Bell came up just one yard short of the goal line on a six-yard run. Bell then punched it in from the one-yard line, extending the Steelers lead to 13-0.

The defense came through forcing another three-and-out, and the offense wasn't about to waste an opportunity with just 2:13 to play in the half. Roethlisberger connected with Bell for 18 yards, and then hit Martavis Bryant for 5, 24 and 19 yards. Roethlisberger capped the drive with an 11-yard touchdown pass to Smith-Schuster. A failed two-point conversion sent the Steelers into the locker room at halftime up, 19-0.

The Steelers got the ball to start the second half, but it didn't go as planned. On third-and-six Roethlisberger went to Brown, who pulled in the reception, and he was ruled down by contact. The Ravens challenged, and it was overturned, ruled an interception by Eric Weddle.   

The Ravens took over at the Steelers' 18-yard line, but the defense held strong, with the Ravens losing six yards on the drive, and had to settle for a 42-yard field goal by Justin Tucker, keeping the Steelers in control, 19-3.

After a missed 44-yard field goal by Boswell, the Ravens went back to work. Collins broke free for a 50-yard gain, and Joe Flacco hit Mike Wallace for a 16-yard touchdown, to cut the lead to 19-9. The Ravens went for two, but after ruling Terrance West's run good, the officials reversed the call.

A defensive battle had both teams exchanging possessions, but it would be the Steelers defense that would come up with two huge plays. Ryan Shazier came up with an interception of Flacco to thwart a drive, and the next time the Ravens got the ball, it would be Mike Hilton who would pick off Flacco to kill another Ravens' drive.

The Steelers put an exclamation point on it, when Le'Veon Bell took it in for a one-yard touchdown, and a 26-9 win. How they scored:A detailed look at today's scoring.

First Quarter: Steelers 3, Ravens 0
Scoring Play: Chris Boswell 30-yard field goal.
Scoring Summary: 16-84-10:23

Second Quarter: Steelers 6, Ravens 0
Scoring Play:  Chris Boswell 49-yard field goal.
Scoring Summary: 9-15-2:59

Second Quarter: Steelers 13, Ravens 0
Scoring Play: Le'Veon Bell one-yard touchdown run.
Scoring Summary:  6-28-2:24

Second Quarter: Steelers 19, Ravens 0
Scoring Play: Ben Roethlisberger 11-yard touchdown pass to JuJu Smith-Schuster. Two-point conversion failed.
Scoring Summary: 8-70-1:35

Third Quarter: Steelers 19, Ravens 3
Scoring Play: Justin Tucker 42-yard field goal
Scoring Summary: 4-(-6)-0:56

Third Quarter: Steelers 19, Ravens 9
Scoring Play: Joe Flacco 16-yard touchdown pass to Mike Wallace. Two-point conversion failed.
Scoring Summary: 3-66-1:03

Fourth Quarter: Steelers 26, Ravens 9
Scoring Play: Le'Veon Bell one-yard touchdown run.
Scoring Summary: 7-49-3:11

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