Tomlin: No time for 'hocus-pocus' theory
By Scott Brown
Published: Tuesday, Jan. 13, 2009,
To get to the Super Bowl, the Steelers must beat the Baltimore Ravens and crush a theory.
You know, the one about how difficult it is for a team to beat an opponent three times in one season.
"I personally don't subscribe to that hocus-pocus," Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said.
The Steelers and Ravens will collide for a third time this season Sunday night at Heinz Field with the AFC championship on the line. The Steelers have been installed as 6-point favorites in the 6:30 p.m. game, and history favors them as well as the oddsmakers.
Twice, the Steelers have beaten an opponent three times in a season — in 1994 and 2002, both against the Cleveland Browns. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, teams that have had a chance to beat a team in the playoffs that they swept during the regular season are 11-7 since 1970.
The Steelers are 7-0 in third games against the same opponent in a season.
Not that Tomlin will put any credence in those statistics.
"What happened in the other two games will have no bearing on the outcome of this game," Tomlin said.
The Steelers and Ravens engaged in hard-hitting, defensive struggles when they played during the regular season. Only a combined seven points separated the AFC North rivals in the two games.
The Steelers defeated the Ravens 23-20 in overtime Sept. 29 at Heinz Field. In the Dec. 14 rematch in Baltimore, the Steelers rallied in the waning moments for a 13-9 victory.
The one advantage the Ravens may have Sunday is the law of average, because they could have easily won either game.
"It's going to be a battle to play a team three times in one year, especially the rivalry that we have," Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger said. "I think it's going to be one for the ages."Additional Information:
Steelers vs. Ravens: Bet me!
As a Steelers fan, do you have a competitive friend from Baltimore who?s rooting for the Ravens• As Pittsburgh heads to the final playoff game this weekend, we?re looking for friendly bets between pals for a pre-game story. Please include your full name, hometown and phone number in your e-mail .
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Steelers defense’s rapid decline looks similar to that of Steel Curtain’s
- Steelers notebook: Roethlisberger comes to Haley defense again
- Woodley says he’s fine with move to right side despite numbers
- Host of Steelers veterans look toward career survival mode
- Steelers film session: Polamalu not at fault on long run
- Expert: KO doesn’t mean ‘worst’ concussion for Pens’ Orpik
- Steelers notebook: Offense fails to make splash; defense lags
- Steelers rookie RB Bell gets respect from teammates, foes alike
- Steelers lineman Adams gets 2nd chance to start