As is often case in the Steelers' matchups against the Ravens, the team that makes the big mistake loses the game.
Both teams made mistakes in their meeting Sunday, but it was the miscues by the Ravens that proved to be fatal in this meeting, as the Steelers drove into field goal in the game's closing moments to defeat Baltimore, 17-10, before a crowd of 67,272 at Acrisure Field.
The Steelers (3-2) got a blocked punt from Miles Killebrew and an interception in the end zone in the fourth quarter by rookie corner Joey Porter to help them vault Baltimore (3-2) into first place in the AFC North heading into their bye week.
"It was Steelers-Ravens the way it usually is in that it is a hotly contested game," said Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin, who has now won six of the past seven games against Baltimore.
"In recent years it's been controlled by the defense as it was today. But can't say enough about that significant play by Miles Killebrew. You locked a kick in the National Football League, you usually win football games, and obviously that is a significant contribution. Just appreciative of the effort, it's a good to go into the bye sitting at the top of the North, particularly with all that we've been through."
Following Porter's interception of Lamar Jackson with 4:04 remaining in the game and the Ravens leading 10-8, Kenny Pickett connected with George Pickens for a 41-yard touchdown down the sideline behind cornerback Marlon Humphrey to give the Steelers their first lead of the game at 14-10. The Steelers attempted a two-point conversion, but failed.
The Ravens had 10 defenders at the line of scrimmage at the snap and only one safety deep. The Steelers had seen that on tape leading up to the game and their call to combat that was to take a chance down the sideline to Pickens.
"We came out of the huddle with that play," said Pickens, who finished with six receptions for 130 yards and a touchdown.
"They went (cover) 0 and we were kind of preparing for it all week," said Pickett. "In bigger moments, they'll go 0, and we got the protection right. George ran his route and went up there and won. Big-time player, making plays in those moments, and that's what we've got in (No.) 14."
Game action photos from the Steelers' Week 5 game against the Baltimore Ravens at Acrisure Stadium
Baltimore got the ball back with just over one minute remaining, but Alex Highsmith stripped Jackson on a pass attempt and T.J. Watt recovered the loose ball to the 18.
The Ravens used their remaining timeouts to force the Steelers to attempt a field goal, and Chris Boswell's 42-yard attempt was good, pushing the Steelers' lead to 17-10 with 49 seconds remaining.
The Ravens got the ball back, but Watt sacked Jackson on fourth down, his second of the game, to end it.
The Ravens scored on their second possession after getting the ball back at their own 41, going 59 yards to get a 14-yard touchdown run from Justice Hill around left end to take a 7-0 lead.
Baltimore made it 10-0 after its next possession, driving to the Pittsburgh 4 before stalling.
Jackson's second-down pass from the 4 was too high for tight end Mark Andrews to handle, while his third-down pass bounced off the hands of wide receiver Rashod Bateman to force a 23-yard Justin Tucker field goal and a 10-0 lead.
The Steelers started their next possession at their own 10 following a holding penalty on the kickoff return, but moved the ball to the Baltimore 39 before Pickett was sacked on third-down by former Pittsburgh defensive back Arthur Maulet from the backside to force a punt.
But on Baltimore's ensuing possession, defensive lineman Larry Ogunjobi stripped Hill from behind on a screen play and safety Damontae Kazee recovered at the Pittsburgh 49.
That set up a 43-yard field goal by Boswell that cut Baltimore's lead to 10-3 with 3:21 remaining in the first half.
The Ravens had an opportunity to add to their lead at the end of the first half as Jackson converted a third-and-11 and third-and-18 with passes to Andrews and rookie Zay Flowers, but head coach John Harbaugh eschewed a field goal from the Pittsburgh 23 with 19 seconds remaining in the half to attempt to convert a fourth-and-2 play and Jackson's pass fell incomplete.
Field position – or lack thereof – continued to plague the Steelers in the second half, as the Ravens consistently moved the ball to at least midfield before giving the ball back.
The Steelers mounted the best drive of the third quarter late in the period, starting at their own 15 as Pickett connected on a pair of passes to Pickens to move the ball into Baltimore territory as the fourth quarter began.
But facing third-and-7 at the Baltimore 34, Pickett was sacked by Patrick Queen to take the Steelers out of field goal range, maintaining Baltimore's 10-3 advantage.
The Ravens were called for their first penalty of the game on a first-down screen, something that proved to be significant when the Steelers got a three-and-out and Killebrew sifted his way through the Baltimore line and blocked Jordan Stout's punt. Tight end Rodney Williams nearly recovered the loose ball in the back of the end zone, but his momentum carried him out of bounds before he could recover the ball. Instead of a touchdown, the Steelers got a safety to trim Baltimore's lead to 10-5.
"It's something he practices," said Highsmith of Killebrew's punt block, his fourth in the NFL and third with the Steelers. "To see him get one is great. You like to see that kind of hard work pay off.
The Steelers got some offensive momentum from the block, as Gunner Olszewski returned the free kick to the Pittsburgh 44 and the Steelers used three-straight Jaylen Warren plays to gain 49 yards – two runs and one catch.
But the possession stalled at Baltimore's 7 and the Steelers settled for a 25-yard Boswell field goal that trimmed the Ravens' lead to 10-8 with just over 7 minutes remaining.
The Steelers got a three-and-out stop and looked to be getting the ball back with momentum, but Gunner Olszewski's fumble gave the Ravens the ball back at the Pittsburgh 5. On third-down, however, rookie Joey Porter Jr. picked off Jackson in the end zone on a pass intended for Odell Beckham Jr., keeping the game within reach.
Pickett finished 18 of 32 for 224 yards and a touchdown, as he led a fourth-quarter comeback against Baltimore for the second-consecutive start. Pickett also led a fourth-quarter comeback against the Ravens last season in Baltimore.