Steelers notebook: Ravens winning close ones
The Ravens have played six games decided by three points or fewer. They've won five. (The Steelers have lost three such games.) If nothing else, this ability to win close games explains why Baltimore could clinch its second consecutive AFC North title Sunday.
None of those wins was as improbable as the 16-13 overtime decision in San Diego last week that was effectively decided by Ray Rice's conversion of a fourth-and-29 play.
“I've been around, and we've been on the other end of the situation where we found ways not to pull it out,” Rice said. “The growth and maturity of this team, we are just finding ways to win games. I'm in my fifth year. Joe Flacco is in his fifth year. We have a pretty mature team now that is finding ways to win.”
If he keeps this up, Shaun Suisham will have the best season by a Steelers kicker. He is 21 of 22 (95.5 percent), the second time in three seasons he has missed only one kick. He was 14 of 15 after signing in 2010. Based on percentage, the best season was by Gary Anderson (93.3 percent, 28 of 30) in 1993.
Following the 20-14 loss in Cleveland, left tackle Max Starks complained about cut blocking — blocks at knee level or lower — by the Browns, a tactic he said they hadn't used before. Starks has a history with Browns lineman Frostee Rucker, a former Bengals player.
Rucker's response was a head-shaking, “Who, us?”
“We don't come here with excuses if we don't come out on top,” Rucker told the Cleveland Plain Dealer. “We give the team credit. They have more going on negative than we do. We don't come in here and cry about holding calls or anything like that.”
Alan Robinson is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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 â 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.