Steelers Preview: Breaking down the Steelers vs. Ravens grudge match in Week 4

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Uh-huh. Pittsburgh, Steeler fans welcome back to another installment of the behind the curtain dot com podcast. The Steelers preview and this is a big one. The big one is the Steelers and the ravens week for Sunday night football. It's going to be a huge game and I'm joined with Brian watt. I guess I should introduce myself those. It might be listening for the first time. I'm Jeff Hartmann editor binds joker dot com with me as always Brian, Anthony Davis. How are you tonight? Brian. A, you know what, Jeff, I'm feeling great because it's raven week and I love raven week because it's like, you know, it's like going to your inlaws with your brother in law that you just can't stand to coexist with, and you know you there and you know you have the rival rivalry, you know your son-in-law much better husband than this guy, but you just know that they're always gonna come at you. You wanna be the more than anything, and that is what I'm thinking now. Absolutely. And you know, a lot of people might not know this, but Brian and I both. We live in Maryland. We live in the same town actually. That doesn't need to be said over the air where we live, and it's very difficult being a Steeler fan in Maryland, especially where we live, we're about, I guess you give you a proximity about an hour out of Baltimore, and ultimately there are a lot of Steeler fans. I mean privacy, there's a lot of. Pittsburgh Steeler fans here in Baltimore, come to find out. I'm not from this area and moved here when the Indianapolis Colts the Baltimore Colts left in the middle of the night. Mayflower trucks came and picked him up and they went to Indy. A lot of fans in this area chose to not follow the Redskins. They didn't wanna follow the colts were that angry. And so a lot of them who they watching on TV every Sunday. It was the Pittsburgh Steelers. And so a lot of people became Steeler fans in this area, especially in western Maryland is I will say that I am very happy that there's a lot of fans here. Now, Brian, I didn't talk to you about this before the show, but I wanted to ask you and I'll go ahead and talk about me. I in that wanna get. What is your favorite ravens Steelers, regular season memory and give to think that I think back to a lot of games. Okay. I think back to the the phenomenal game where Troy poem all Lou on Sunday. Night came in and Tomahawk chop flacco arm. And then Woodley ended up picking it up. That was tremendous. I think about Santana homes the catch. Where did he get the? Did the ball crossed the line? Did it not after Ben scrambled? I think about the game where Rob's forget hitting the nose into doesn't ten and broke his nose. They still have come back when I think about the Charlie dach- game when he hit heath Miller, and he Hillard is in his pylon for the w until lassie's knows their last winter MIT Bank stadium. But for me, my favorite Steelers ravens regular-season memory has to be Christmas day two years ago, the immaculate extension as they are now calling it, I guess. And I washed a highlighted that played either day on Twitter in, it's still gives me chills because I, I remember the situation. I remember thinking there's no way they're gonna, throw this pass anywhere near where could be caught and not get in the big in fade route. I'm thinking. That quick out, kind of like the play. They ran of Ryan Switzer on Monday night where it's just a quick out and if he drops it, it's incomplete. They kick a field goal and send it to overtime, Antonio Brown with three guys all over Eric, whittle, rag just poured his facemask extensive all over to me it maybe it's because it's recent. That's my favorite Baltimore Pittsburgh regular season memory. I ask those whether you're watching YouTube now to go into the live chat or comment on this video. What's your favorite regular? She's a memory. Let us know if if you're listening or watching on behind a steel curtain dot com, do the same comments action go down. I wanna know what your favorite Steelers and ravens regular season folks not play us not talking about the playoffs raise Brian. What about you? What is your favorite? Steelers? Ravens, regular season memory. What you know, what are you brought this up? That was the first thing I thought of because what an amazing Christmas that was, I mean, I was feeling amazing. I was watching that gave everybody was around the house, but I was in my jersey with my towel. I was down George, Michael just died. So everyone's freaking out. And then watching that game they were, they were playing terrible. I remember talking to you, you changed your jersey change your at halftime during that game because the color rush benjor's that they were wearing. It wasn't working for you and you got the MO Jo from that. So I remember that being a great game, but when I think of Steelers ravens, one of my favorites is two thousand eight week four. So this is the game where you have no Willie Parker. Willie, Parker's restored. Mendenhall doesn't play that much at all because you know, that's the bounty game the famous Terrell suggs Ray Lewis, putting a bounty on his head in that game. Also also they put one on Hines ward, but they could, hey Hines, but they, they broke his jaw. They broke men in halls jaw, and he was out for the entire season in that game. So it came down to the wealthy more in the world. He carried the ball pretty well. But what happened in that game in the third quarter, it just there was a Santona homes touchdown and the Lamar Woodley. The defense Harrison Woodley broke through Woodley took the ball in two plays. They score two touchdowns. The game went into overtime. Jeff Reed kicked the field goal. They win the game, and that was a huge game getting them to the Super Bowl in. They won the Super Bowl that year. And that was a huge Monday night game. They were stagnant the entire game. They're playing a rookie and Joe flacco and they beat them. They had more trouble than they thought they would like they had his entire time playing in Pittsburgh playing for Baltimore in Pittsburgh in Heinz. Field and they really came through and that was the turning point next week. They'd be Jacksonville, they won on Iran, next thing. You know, it's bend attend in the Super Bowl and they wanted number six. What was the year? You know you were a wealthy more and I thought a mealy for some reason. It's just the way my mind works. I start thinking about other backup running backs that have played a role in 'em easy. I think of Isaac Redman. What year was that is a grad Mun caught that little screen pass spun out of a tackle and ended up scoring the game winning touchdown. You remember that it might not have been a game winning score, but that was a huge turning point. Yes. So that's two thousand ten. That's the broken nose gagging at stake in, and that's that's Paula Malu. It's a Sunday night game in December, and that was a key that was a key game and getting them to the Super Bowl that year to where they eventually lost to Green Bay. Yeah, absolutely. You could go on. We could do an entire show. Just talking about memories between these two teams. On those is because if there's ravens fans listening their thinking about the blow out on opening day, I can't remember what year that was. Maybe two thousand nine or two dozen. Ten eleven is number eleven. Two thousand eleven, and it was a bloodbath horrible Ray rice. Ran all over them. They they'll talk about Bart Scott, almost a cabinet meeting Ben Rothlisberger and that nasty nasty hit. Both these teams has gotten the best of each other. But let's talk about this football Pittsburgh Baltimore in Pittsburgh at Heinz field. I know the John Harbaugh was probably having a connection because he already he always complains about having to play in Pittsburgh on primetime. So let's talk about key matchups here. Brian, you have the one in one Steelers going against the two and one ravens orders match. You. Wanna watch for we'll. We'll list three piece. Give me your top matchup. It doesn't have to be the most important. But one of the three. You don't let me start with Joe Hayden against John Brown. Now less you play fantasy football. The last couple years. You probably don't know who John Brown is, but he did very well for the Zona cardinals came over as a free agent to Baltimore this year when they revamped that entire wide receiver core. And right now he's their top playmaker. They're using him over the middle quite a bit. He is twelve catches two touchdowns in two hundred twenty two yards. And he leads the team and that's on a team with Michael Crabtree who is not having a bad season himself, but Hayden established himself last week as a very indispensable player. We talked about Ben Rothlisberger being indispensable on the offense. I think it's safe to say that Hayden's existence on that team this week on that defense was the difference between a win and a loss because without Joe Haden, I don't think that defense holds up enough to go ahead and win that game, and I'll go as far as. Sing the Joe Hayden against Kansas City. That's a different ballgame because they're, they're going to be going to. You'll keep less teams in the end zone at that point. So Hayden is going to lock down that side against John Brown. John Brown said, goes across the middle. That's an opportunity for the ravens to score, and he's also becoming a deeper threat forum to down the middle. So he could stretch the defense hated needs to lock them down. And I think that's one of the I'm definitely going to be looking at. Yeah, that's a good one. You could probably say the entire second year. I'm going to go a different route and I'm gonna say the Steelers front seven versus the Baltimore Ravens in terms of getting to Joe flacco. Now this is not your grandfather's or eating your father's ravens team. They liked to throw the football bead mentioned the revamped passing attack with Michael Crabtree, John Brown and Willie Snead not to mention some of their tight ends or playing some really good football and Hayden Hearst might make. His debut on Sunday. I did not get to see the injury report today. Nonetheless, they're not the ground and pound ravens that you're used to seeing. I'm sure the check down Joey and Chuck it, deep, Joey, trying to draw defensive. Passer Fearance will still be a large part of their playbook, but this is an offense in the Baltimore Ravens that in terms of overall passing yours ranks ninth in the NFL they are throwing team now because rushing offense of rushing yards per game twenty six. And I said, they're not the team that wants to grind it out there looking to throw the football, it's invoked for the entire league. It's what's trending right now as you wanna throw the football you, that's how you move it. And more good things can have really the bad, so they need to get the flacco. And if you watch the Denver Broncos game last Sunday and I watched a lot of it, they did. The Denver of pass, rush, was able to get the flacco. They were able to cause him to get out of the pocket of the bad thing is that flacco is actu-. Only then very, very well outside of the pocket. I don't have his passer rating in front of me, but I did see on Twitter. Thanks to ESPN's NFL matchup Twitter account. They posted that yards or passer rating outside the tackle box, and they listed the top aide quarterbacks in that area. And Joe flacco was, I think, third. So the Steelers in terms of getting the flacco, they need to keep him in the pocket. It sounds crazy. 'cause we're talking about Joe flacco, but you all we've all seen it when you flacco Kim Bernie with his legs, he can get outside and make plays with his legs and with his arm on the run when you need when you pass, rush, bud, Dupree's, gotta, be disciplined. He can't run the art and lead flacco get underneath, which seems to happen. So many times he needs to stay. Disciplined, pushes, tackle back into flacco force him to step up into the pocket in that is where Cameron Heyward and Steph onto it and eat a Dan mccullers j. Von Hargrave should be collapsing that pocket. They did that a couple times. Ryan Fitzpatrick. They looked good against Ryan Fitzpatrick getting thirteen quarterback hits three sacks. They need to bring the pain on Joe flacco Brian. What's next for you? Well, for me, Jeff, I'm looking at the other side of the ball, and you know, it seems like this guy has been around forever. We talk about Choi, Paula, molars existence in the series the same year that Troy was draft in two thousand three agai was drafted. A few few picks ahead of them named t. sizzle, Terrell, suggs, and you know that guy can still bring it. I mean, the stuff. I mean, I, I can't stand the guy. I never could, but you know that team respects him. I remember, you know, just the other day Ben Rothlisberger called him a first ballot hall of Famer. I've, I've remembered Mike Tomlin in the past, calling him cool of cool and the gang. That's how dangerous they think. This guy is this year, Jeff. He is still bringing it. He has. He has two and a half sacks. Seven tackles forced fumble. He still bringing it. He's dangerous. And we saw the. Problems that JP on Monday night gave Alvin away in coming off that same side big Al has got to account for pieces. So Terrell suggs coming and we've seen them break. Ben Roethlisberger knows before we've seen them just just decimate that offense before in the past. And even as a fifteen year vet going into actually sixteen season, he's still dangerous. So they need Ben to have the game that he had last week. And with the way the Steve fence has been playing, Ben needs to be a three fifty plus yardage guy almost every single week right now until things solidify even more so keeping Ben upright and not getting murdered by guy like Terrell suggs is paramount for album away. So big Al against says is one of my big matchups. Absolutely. I'm gonna go step further. I'm going to stay on that side of the football as well for my. And matchup, and that's the Steelers tight ends versus the ravens defense in multiple ways. I look at the Steelers. I didn't article about the staff counts of last game in I wrote about how the Steelers can finally deploy their two tight end sets, which is something that if you go back to rain defeat time, when he was a coordinator of Memphis, he loved run the twelve personnel. That's one back to tight ends, and they were finally able to do that. And you saw a lot of that. Jesse, James and Vance McDonald almost Plitt kiss, but the snap totals evenly. And then even Xavier, grim will got in the action at times and they even had Chuck's core four came in and he played some of that. You know, you're talking about the the big up front. He might be a designated tight end, but is still a tackle. The one thing I like about that is if they can run two tight end sets, it's going to allow them to chip guys like Terrell suggs is going to help them pass protect her, but it's also going to give them options in the passing game. I'm not sure if CJ Moseley's gonna play in this game or not. He practiced it on a practice on a limited base. On Thursday. Again, I have not seen the injury report on whether he's gonna play. If he does not play, even though the ravens are deep at the inside linebacker position, I think the Vance McDonald and were Jesse. James can abuse the middle because when there's so much attention being given to the outside, we're talking to you Brown. We're talking juju Smith Schuster and even a young James Washington is, do I wanna say that the middle could be open is going to be as gaping open. As we saw Vance McDonald, maybe not the ravens are a better defense Tampa Bay. But at the same time, it's a match up that they can explore dick and move the chains. You go back to those classic batches. When Rothlisberger had heath Miller heath always had big games against the ravens. It just seemed to always work out. There's something about the tight end position and finding those seems finding the soft spots zones and especially in the red zone. That's why I like the Steelers tight ends its match up to watch the Steelers tight ends versus that front seven of the Baltimore. Ravens, both in pass protection, run blocking and as receiving threat. So for me, that's my second key matchup for this game Brian. What is your third and final match for the upcoming game? We know this is not a traditional matchup. This is more of a position versus position matchup, but would you talk about strengths of the Baltimore Ravens for the last seven years? You're talking Justin Tucker, you probably for the last two years, you're gonna throw Chris Boswell in that a question as well. Right now after three games, you're not throwing Chris Boswell in that a question where you had a sore thing. You know of a question Mark so they the place kicking game is very big. In this game. We have seen Justin talker going Heinz field traditionally hard place to kick, especially for the visiting team and he he can hit fifty two yards. Fifty three orders with ease. And you know, when he comes up and you don't have to worry about him whatsoever. Chris Boswell, like we said was the same thing, but now he's having trouble with just extra points. Chris Boswell is also having trouble with field goals. He has one this year. Something's going on. On in his head. He has to get it back together. But the great way for him to get back together is with a big kick against a team like the Baltimore Ravens. Hey, how many times in the last in the entire steers have we seen this game go down to three points. So every single point is precious Boswell has to be perfect. Justin Tucker is going to be perfect, actually you. If you could tell me kicked it, he's missed against the Steelers. I'd like to know 'cause I can't. I can't bring it up in my head. I don't remember him ever missing kick against Pittsburgh. He may have, but that's how money he is, and we need the kicking game to match theirs and then some. So there can be no differential whatsoever. Chris Boswell has to be on just as much as Tucker. You know he's going to be Jeff. Yeah, and to just to talk type of kicker, they if he misses one, you go, Wow. Did add really just happened. He really just missed a field goal and it could be from fifty seven. And even if you miss your, I was really expecting it to go through the uprights. Whereas now Chris Boswell is the complete opposite. If he makes it people like, oh, wow, he just made a field goal or he just made an extra point. It's bad state of affairs for the Steelers kicking game right now and talk about polar opposites when you're comparing Justin Tucker, who is the model of consistency when it comes a field goal kicking and Chris Boswell, who is just if you're a golfer, he's got the in the feud. If you've ever played the game of golf, you know. You know exactly what that is. It's where when you get over the ball, you have no idea what's going to happen. You're basically thinking, is it going to go? Right is going to go left. I. During a bad place mentally when that's happening. The one way to get out of that funk, you think about golfing kicking? There's a lot of similarities, it's it's a pressure packed situation. You only have to rely on yourself really in terms of making the kick, you just have to get through it. You just have to battle your way through it. And so I think Boswell took a step in the right direction on Monday night. I know he missed extra point. I know he missed a field goal. Both of those were off the uprights. The margin of error is getting less. I just all say for me, my final match of is actually two really good friends. People may not realize this and if CJ Moseley is not in the lineup, Ben Rothlisberger versus Eric Weddell, Eric Weddell is the one that will have the green dot on his helmet. If CJ Moseley is not in the game, he'll be the one making the defense of calls and you better believe 'cause they rob Berger and wet or very good friends off the field. And I don't think what since he's come to Baltimore, we hasn't. He's never beaten Ben Rothlisberger. So I think that the mad the chess Nash between those two, the pre snap reads the adjustments made at the line of scrimmage, you'll see what will come up and making changes in Rothlisberger very well could be making changes himself. He could be making dummy changes, which are just bluffs, basically calling out nonsense and trying to make the defense thing that adjusting. He might be sliding protections. He may be changing the place, especially this go up Tempa. That's going to be a really fun match up to watch. Because wells very intelligent Rothlisberger, especially this season has shown that he is more cerebral and it's probably because he has more say in the offense of game planning, but ultimately that matchup Rothlisberger versus Weddell in terms of just how they're going to orchestrate their units. Now, Moseley's in the game, I'm pretty sure the ravens will give him the dot and he'll be the one that's calling everyone around. But if he's not that wet over ses bras, burger, if Moseley's in will say Moseley versus Rothlisberger. A lot of those calls make a huge difference. And I think that's going to be really, really key for this game. So there you have some just very general match ups. If you're listening to this thinking, you know, Brian gave you some very specific ones in terms of teases ultra suggs versus our Elvin away. I give you more general stuff. We're trying to hit on all cylinders here folks. And now we're going to switch gears. We're gonna talk about individual players to watch. We're talking players whether it's ravens or whether it Steelers, I'm going to focus only on the Steelers Bryant wherever he was. Wants players to watch in this game that could have a huge impact on the outcome. We're going to say who they are. Why Brian let you go, I think, is your I will take us your first player to watch this upcoming game on Sunday night football. James, Connor, it's gotta be James. Connor, you know, he's not having a bad season, and I've heard some comparisons in week two and three saying, okay, you're not getting what you got with lady on bell, but look, you don't need to. You haven't the last couple of weeks needed him to go ahead and and get one hundred yard game. He had. He had ninety five purpose yards against Tampa, and he was a pretty big deal in helping close that game down but against a team like Baltimore. Sure. There's going to be a lot of points put up because these teams put up the ravens put up thirty two points again and so you're gonna have to go toe-to-toe with them. But you also want to try to slow it down a little bit in control the line of scrimmage more because they're going to be keying more on the passing game and James, Connor, he can help control this game, but having a solid game, if you can get twenty five to thirty carries out of Connor, you're going to have a pretty good night. It's going to help. Set up the setup the past a whole lot more. Now. It seems to reason weeks. They've been setting up the run with the past, but I think they're going to want to get back to it against the ravens with having the running game helps set up past and and keep them on their toes a whole lot more. And if they can do that, they're going to be a lot more successful. Absolutely need talked about Connor, and this was on our show last night. The standard is a standard when I was did my show with Lance Williams. If you haven't listened to that, I do recommend you go back and it's not because I co host the show. I think it's a very good show, I think is very valuable. You're getting remission. We asked the question because lady on belli's has a number two receiver. I want to be paid. Like number two receiver. In a top running back, we did the numbers and so far Connor, James Connors, averaging five receptions a game. And if he continues that pays, he would end the season with eighty receptions. And so our question was will have more receptions in two thousand eighteen and bell did for this year's and he doesn't seventeen and bell. Finished with eighty five eighty five receptions. So you have to think five receptions a game in this offense is not ridiculous, and having a game where he might have seven or eight isn't out of the realm of possibility either. I think the James Connors proven that he can catch the ball that he can fill a lot of Phil check a lot of the boxes that lady unbelted we wanna see him. I wanna see him gash the ravens because that's what lady on bell did. If you go back to last year, it was week four one save against. He broke out against Kansas City, but he tortured the ravens the following week and he did it again at home at Heinz field. That's what I wanna see. Because ultimately, I think that was leave you on those calling card kindly dantonio homes back at his day, Santona homes, ravens, killer man. If you go back and listen to what we talked about the beginning of the show with these pass match. A lot of them were based around Santana homes with a return or a great catch, and, and so yet James, Connor, I had him on my list. I was waiting to see, you're going to say. I and you did. So for me, I'm gonna go with the guy that's been missing since week one, and that's TJ what I don't know where he went. Where did TJ walk-o has anyone seen TJ watt? Because I've really liked firm to show up at some point. It's not to me says, oh, he gets flexed out a lot. A lot of people make a lot of excuses for for TJ watt and stuff like that, and that's fine. But for me with TJ what I need to see him dominate a few times against someone that's not the Cleveland Browns. All right. That's what I wanna see. Because the last two weeks they played pretty decent, offensive line's really good passers. And the one common denominator between Mahomes Fitzpatrick so far is the amount of how quick they get the ball out of their hands. They don't sit back there and hold onto the football, longtime, Joe flacco will hold onto the football, longtime, if especially he's trying to press it down the field. So TJ watts got to step up and he's got his. Up in coverage. He's got a step up in the run, stopping. He's been solid, run stopping. I don't want to say that, but as a pass rusher in coverage, he has to step up his game. I'm waiting for that signature game. Everyone talks about his performance a week one last year and his performance a week one this year. What's the common denominator? The freaking Cleveland Browns is the common denominator. I wanna see him step up in a big way. I'm talking that Joe flacco force fumble that he had at the end of last season. I wanna see more of that against big in big games against good teams. So that's why TJ what is my first blue? Who's your second there? Brian. Brian's Repin the TJ wide. Very good at says. He's rocking the jurors watch. I like that plays well. Now I'm gonna get a James Connor because I just talked about him. You know what, that's I agree with you on TJ what wholeheartedly. I have. I have been complaining about him dropping back in coverage, but when they game plan for him, he he brings Jeff. So. That's hope. Let's hope they do something and that defense needs the spark for short. So what's your, here's your next player to watch. Oh, I'm sorry. The next player to watch you don't. I'm gonna go with Ryan Switzer. They like to end. He's also he's also my fantasy sleeper here. I'm not trying to go ahead and step on the format here, but kind of guy that that they wanna go ahead and Ben likes them already bents cohesiveness with Ryan Switzer and bringing him in as that fourth receiver, he's made Justin hunter completely irrelevant on that team. I mean, hunter. I mean, everyone thought hunter was gonna be your number four guy. Maybe even sneak up into the number three spot. But with Switzer being out there, they're finding new ways to use him as a runner as on those quick slants he's he's becoming a little Swiss army knife him. I know that was the nickname Jalen Samuels, but this guy Ryan Switzer his become all purpose. He. Reminds me of you just like little guys. We've seen throughout the the league the last few years that could really take over a ballgame. You just don't expect them to. But when Ben gets that report was somebody like we've seen him get that report with Vance McDonald and other players. He really uses them. And once he gets that trust, they're gonna become a weapon. And so with all the weapons that they have on this team, here's a guy that. A defense is going to have to let them go, and they're not going to be keying on Ryan Switzer. But when he's in there, he's going to do something for you. So the more and more we go along in the season, you're going to see him as a bigger part of this offense. So right now, he's kind of a sleeper guy, but he's he's a guy that could be very dangerous to this team and jump out on the statute. It's not going to be amazing. You know, you're not gonna see ten catches for over one hundred yards, but you're going to see him do something big. And as a kick returner as a punt returner PF pro football focus has him listed in the top ten already as a return man. So he's getting it done on this team. He's making a difference already. Okay. So you kind of went into our fantasy segment so we can have cut the players to watch a little bit short and I'll go ahead and give you who I was going to say next for our players watch and it's my fantasy lock now, fantasy football, whether you play the season long game where you and your buddies or you and random strangers get together and you draft and you keep your players and you wash the waiver wire and all that stuff. You might have some of these players on your on your roster already, or you might have to trade for him. These players that are locks are typically not available on the waiver wire. Now, if you play daily fantasy like I do then these players are always available if they're healthy. So for me, my lock in this is kind of going against the grain because he doesn't typically have big games against the ravens. I just feel like he's due in. That's Antonio Brown. And I've been saying for a couple of weeks and you can just feel it. He's winning his one on one match ups. He's beating double coverage, but for some reason, he and Rothlisberger have not been able to connect. You just get the feeling that it's it's it's a matter of time. It's just a matter of time until these to go off and he's gonna pull in one hundred twenty two touchdowns or something like that. If I'm playing fantasy and I have the option frame, Tonio Brown. I'm taking it because it's at home. He's got a lot to prove because he's a aways behind juju Smith Schuster in terms of yardage as a receiver right now, I think he is at two twenty something geez at three fifty. It's a pretty significant margin right now that he's trailing GDP issues during, although he says, I don't care about staffs, blah, blah, blah, yes, you do your diva, wider Seaver. You all care about Sadd's. I think Antonio Brown wants to make a statement and it's on Sunday football aged. Home he wants to play at these guys. My fantasy lock this week is Antonio Brown's, Brian. I hope I didn't steal your thunder there, but what's your fantasy lock of the week? You did, but I can. May I add that I respect your fantasy picks because last week I listened to your fantasy picks and I went in. I've not only did I beat you, but I want our entire fan dole league last week. So little plug. I was first place out of out of ten. Let me let me say if if Kirk cousins didn't crap the dead, I would've had a hell of a team, but he crafted anyways. But Vance McDonald was huge last week, you know what I was looking at your juju being locked this week. Jujubes not really getting the touchdowns. He's getting the yards. He still, he's still a great fantasy play. So you're gonna play guy like like juju, but I'm going back to the well again, like I did two weeks ago, you know Jesse, James, he still going to in a Fanta league when you a daily league when you have to go ahead and pick them up, you're going to get him for a budget of about fifty five hundred or somewhere around there where you can offset a high money guy with a guy like Jesse, James Ben. For bent hit Vance McDonald for that big epic play with a stiff arm last week, but he still going to be looking towards Jesse James, like you mentioned earlier on the podcast. They're looking at two tight end sets somebody's going to be open in Jesse has become so reliable to me that I'm thinking that I would quote a survivor song from nineteen eighty five. I think the search is over for a tight end. I think you just go ahead and sign a guy like Jesse James next year. Bring him back these, your tight end fans McDonald because days the he's your other tight end and you keep it going. But this week you're gonna see a lot of Jesse James with Ben Roethlisberger. He's going to, he's going to soften up the middle and he's going to get open for a lot of big gains. I can actually see an eighty two one hundred yard game out of Jesse. James with one touch down at least throw in about eight catches so you can. Not too good stat line from Jesse, James, I would play them. So you said that's your lock Jesse, James, your lock? That's my luck this week. Holy crap, that that sounds like a sleeper to me, but you're said your sleeper, I'll let you talk about him in a second in case people were just joining us live. I'll go ahead and say my sleeper and some of the you mentioned as a key player to watch and as James Connor look, if you play daily fantasy like we do James Connors points his value in terms of how much cost has gone down as the weeks progress. He was very cheap Ed before week one. He blew up in week one against Cleveland and after week one, he was a very expensive player that is production has gone down so has the price for him. He's a player that I think like you mentioned. I think the Steelers are gonna come into this game with the intent of we want to run the football. We one of us tablets, the run. We don't necessarily want to rely on Rothlisberger throwing the ball forty. Fifty times to win every game. You're hoping that they can sustain dries. Begin attack quick if they have to that, they can also stretch out those drives that are, you know, there's eight minute time consuming drives that are absolutely back breakers. That's what I liked about this Pittsburgh offense by the way, look at the end of the first half against Tampa Bay emitted into change, thinking like minute, fifteen minutes, seventeen. At the most was on the clock. Three timeouts beautiful drive for office for eight for nine touchdown. They have those capabilities. They need to show now that they can just grind it out, get first downs just like they did at the end of the game. I want to. I want this Steelers offense. If people were asking me Jeff, what is your ideal Pittsburgh Steelers offense is that if everyone in the stadium knows what you're going to do and you can still go do it. That's my ideal Pittsburgh Steelers office. And so for me, what they did in Tampa Bay in the fourth quarter, at the end of the game was very impressive. Everyone knew they headed. Run the ball and they did. I understand that you issues to Roth's burger had that big connection, but when they needed a first down, it was James. Connor. He was busted line. I was heavy to see that James Connor sleeper. If you have on your bench, you're not thinking he's going to do much, try AB inserting them into a flex spot if you have him. That's what I would put him on a daily fantasy league. If you have a flex option as for my league, did I set up the Brian's in? I did not put a kick around. I put an extra flex because no one likes kickers anyways, especially me with Chris Boswell with dead Beverly ship right now. But anyways, go ahead, Brian, and talk about your little water bug. Bryan Switzer. Why you think he actually is a good fantasy sleeper, because let's be honest, he's not touching the ball that much. You know what I had premature -cation a little bit ago with, and I kind of. Went to early on Ryan Switzer, but you know what? I think this guy could go ahead and do some things. He's going to break on one of these days, you know, and a lot of leagues we'll give you points for your for any type of score. If it's if it's a score from a kick return or a punt return, he's going to have one soon. I mean, I'm thinking the guy gets about two this year, Jeff. It's possible plus Ben found him for the first touchdown, you know, he's gonna look towards them. They're each week. They're finding more ways to try to use them in practice and he's an extra weapon that they have. So right now, Ryan Switzer if you have to throw in h IPE guy you, this might be a good week for it because this is a defense. This isn't like you said earlier, this isn't your your father's ravens. This is a team that the give up a lot of points. Now they also put up a lot of points now. This. This is a team that this isn't the slobber knocker type defense of game that used to be seventeen thirteen Pittsburgh and Baltimore. This is a game where you're going to see like last year, what was it? Forty two thirty nine the week after on on December tenth of last year. It was just a crazy game in Pittsburgh. Last year they put up almost eighty points combined. You're gonna see something like that. So you're going to see some opportunities for a guy like Ryan Switzer the water bug, like you like to come love that nickname for him, and you know, that's the guy that you can get cheap and you're probably gonna get some points this week. Yeah, the nets. If you wanna go that route, I'm not touching that. Gave it a ten foot pole and fantasy football, but that's just me, you know, you can do. I wanna talk, didn't region our predictions before do that. If you're watching live on YouTube, if you have questions that you want to answer to the end of the show, leaving the live chat. I've got it up here on my phone. I'm checking it. And as scrolling through some of the comments earlier, our good friend, my co-host on the other two other shows the post game show and the standards standard. Lance Williams chimed in with a very, very good point kudos to him tip a cab, my brother, and that is special teams in that the ravens have had to punts blocked already. And so maybe you can see the Steelers going after one. I liked that. I liked that a lot in terms of Jong, not like that guy. So let's go down to some predictions. Let's talk about who we think's going to win who we think's gonna lose, but lemme give you some teams to ticks. I just to kind of wrap your head around things if you're not really familiar with the ravens offense of, let's go down some rank. Ting's offense of yard yards per game, the ravens ranked, thirteenth ofensive points per game. They ranked fifth, they're scoring a lot of points offense, rushing yards per game, twenty six off. It's passing ours per game night. Now let's go to the defensive side of the football defense of yards per game. There I in the NFL passing game their second and rushing yards per game, thirteen. So this is crazy. Okay. They're not running the ball. Well, twenty six breath in the NFL and they're not stopping the run. Well giving of one hundred three point seven yards per game. However, they're keeping people out of the end zone points per game. They're only allowing seventeen points per game as a defense in their offense. We talked about this on our standard is a standard show. Last night has never been stopped in the red zone. Yet this year they're twelve for twelve in the red zone. Pretty impressive stuff there. But Brian, I'm gonna go ahead and toss it to you and give me your prediction and how you see this game playing out. You know what? This is a paramount game for the Pittsburgh Steelers, they're going back home. This should be a win for the Steelers with. Against any other team, but this is the Baltimore Ravens. Joe flacco has never really completely struggled in their thirteen career games. Fifteen touchdowns ten interceptions. He's won a playoff game in Pittsburgh. He is not intimidated by Heinz field, not intimidated by Steeler nation. He's tough to play this game. This is a toss up because we talk about just a little bit ago. We talked about that game in late December last year. How that went down. It looked like a ravens win in Pittsburgh clawed back. It was very emotional game because it was six days after Ryan shades of your went down, but it looked like a Baltimore win. So this game in two thousand eighteen NFL games could change on a dime. We've we've seen that already. We almost saw that Monday night, so I'm cautiously optimistic, but if I think with my head and on my. Heart. I'm actually going to go ahead and say, thirty one, twenty eight in favor of the Baltimore Ravens. You know what? I was the same thing I said to Lance Williams when he predicted the ranger when good pig against them, everyone pick against him. I don't care that. You know what backs against the wall underdogs at home. I like it. I like it a lot. So you know what? I'm gonna take the Steelers. I think that there's something about this team. We let off our show last night and I hate to keep referencing that. But with the question of which half is the Steelers team is the first half against Tampa Bay where they scored twenty three office of points thirty total points or is it the second half of the scored no points and let them right back in? I still think this first half team is the team that we can expect once they kind of get things together, will they get it together? I don't know. But you know what? I'm gonna go with these games are typically what four points are under, right? I'm gonna keep it right at that line. I have the Steelers winning thirty one to twenty seven thirty one twenty seven. It would drop the ravens record to into the Pittsburgh advanced. Two one in one in depending on how the Cincinnati Bengals do against the Atlanta Falcons. They could be right in the thick of things in the AFC and the AFC north division. So Brian picked against the pig issue. He took the ravens, Lance Williams last night at the ravens. I'm taking the Steelers and both times because I don't change my prediction at all. And so we'll see how things play out. Call me journal optimists. That's fine. But we, you know what? I just think that this team is better than what they've put on the field so far. And so Brian, what do you think about that prediction before we get into any questions. You know what I like that prediction to. I'm just being, I'm usually the eternal optimist and something that you said about the Pittsburgh Steelers, first half offense. Just want to let you know something about the ravens. Second, half defense has not allowed a touchdown in the second half at all this year, so they are. They get stronger as the game goes on. I mean, really, I hope I can eat chronics. I hope I'm completely wrong. I hope I've egged on my face next week and I personally will let you go ahead and just make fun of me to the gills and I hope do. I hope I'm dead wrong because I'll tell you what the networks pay me to us to Kate. I'm just going with my head. This is a crazy year already. I think the Steelers have the key of the tools to win this game. I just worry about the momentum that the ravens have right now, and I think they are a better team than a lot of St.. Nation do. So that's why I'm going that way. I hope Lance and I are both rawal. Yeah. Well, you know, I said last night I'll say it again. If you, let's let's look at you. The ravens beat. They beat a high school JV team in the Buffalo Bills and week one that we're starting Nathan Peterman at quarterback. Let me refer. I'll say that again, folks. Nathan Peterman at quarterback. Okay. And it was at home Baltimore's tough MD. Then they lose to the Bengals on a short week and they will crappy in that game. They came back, but those because the Bengals are the Bengals and they find ways to lose or almost lose and then they beat the Denver Broncos team that I'm sorry, just not that good. They're just not that good. Everything about the just not that good. I'm not impressed with the ravens yet. They, they beat the Steelers on Sunday night. I'll I'll be the first to say that if they beat them in the better team kudos to them, I just don't think that I think it's going to be evenly matched game. I don't think one team is drastically. Than the other. But at the same time, as always, I think it's gonna come down to about four points or fewer. So let's dive into these questions here. Brian. I like to do these live Chad questions, rapid fire. Okay. So keep your mic on pay attention. It's going to be quick. Here we go. Do you think he Butler? Keith butlers job is safe. Go ahead Ryan. I don't think I don't think so either. Do you think he could be fired in season. No, I do not. Okay. I agree with that. I don't think it's safe but not during the season. I agree. Okay. Who will win the cornerback q. battle? This is typically from what we've understand is between Cody sense of all cameras sudden and Artie burns. I think Cam Sutton's the guy there. That's right now he's your best bed already. Just a, he snake bitten. Discipline Cody is a backup. Yeah, cody's backup or were already burns? I think wins it because he's a number one draft pick. I think e seen my Tomlin do this before he sending a message trying to light a spark. Don't be surprised if already earns a story to this week in another question was a follow up. Do they do you think that brings someone else in you think the Steelers could possibly make an NC in-season move this year? You know what? They definitely can. They've done it the past couple years here and there they brought offense lineman in. They've definitely brought kickers in. They can go ahead and do it. I mean, hey, they're getting eight hundred fifty five thousand dollars back every single week with slavery on bell. So they're going to have the room to bring somebody in. I just don't know who is on their couch right now. That's good enough to come in and play. You're right. And I don't think there is anyone out that it's worthy of them bringing in right now. So unless there's an injury, I think they stayed put. I don't think they're actually going to do anything. When a question about what's up with number ninety? Two, the rookie that's obviously outside linebacker. Olah Dany he is on injured reserve. He cannot come back until week. Six, I think, is at six or eight Brian. I believe it is week six. Okay. I think it's the stay week. Seven. I think he has to stay out six weeks. All right. Another question from Lance Williams out there watching. How will the Steelers get pressure on Joe flacco on Sunday night. But do pre really needs to bring it. And his stat line is not as bad as you would think with five QB hits two sacks to pass deflections interception of forced fumble. But like you mentioned before he overruns it. So if you can get him from not over running flacco he could get a pressure. And you also mentioned you gotta have a guy like TJ watt step up, but coming from the middle, John Boston is doing more and more each week. And if you bring him in, he can make a little bit of an impact. In my opinion, the Steelers are going to get the flacco. It's going to be because of two players. Cam Hayward Steph onto it because if they're not going to say that here, not getting interior pressure, it's it's not gonna matter. It's not gonna matter. Is it not just Joe flacco? It's not gonna matter against majority of quarterbacks in the league because they're going to be out of step up. They're going to be able to maneuver their way to the pocket, and it's not going to be difficult because, like I said, budget pre runs up the over and over again. It's an easy lane. We saw Aaron Rodgers in the preseason just abuse them with his legs. So there you go. I think if they're going to give pressure has to be with those two two, it's got to play better. He hasn't played well yet, in my opinion, here we go. Lance Williams says, do we think Joey porter will be fired at the end of the year. I don't think so. I think they're married to Joey for some reason. I'm going to say that if if if an outside linebacker doesn't sniff double digit sacks and you just don't seem to development happening even more so than we already have. I think he could be gone. I think he's one of those coaches that it was kind of Carnell lake last year where they might have said, keep an eye on this year. If you don't kind of turn it around could be gone. I think that, yeah, so he would another question does Chris Boswell MS, another kick on Sunday. She better not if wants to keep his job, he'd better not in. Let me tell you something Jeff, three years ago, Chris Boswell, excuse me two years ago, I believe was three, Chris Boswell gut his job because week four prime time. It was a Thursday night game, but a prime time game against the Baltimore Ravens, Josh Scooby, wet the bed. And that's why Chris Boswell is in Pittsburgh. You know, they are not oppo the, they're not going to wait too much longer. I know Tomlin came out and said, he's our guy. He's our kicker, but I don't care what you paid him in the off season. You know, it's a key position we've seen him do before with Todd Peterson, going Jeff Reed. We saw it was Scooby going to Boswell. And then we saw with Jeffrey losing his job to Sean Swedes them back in in two thousand ten. And so those those were all playoff seasons to where those guys came in and did well. So you can see it happen to the answer to your question. The question was, will he miss a kick on Sunday, yes or no? No. No, not going to. I don't think he does either. Better? Not right. You don't miss in my opinion, you don't miss three kicks all year and then just suck. All of a sudden doesn't happen, especially you Scott Scooby coming from Jacksonville to Pittsburgh, you can kind of see, man, that's different. It's a different environment. You playing a meaningful game. There's more pressure boswell's been there done that. He spent successful there. I just don't see him completely collapsing. So I'm gonna say that, no, here we go. Do they pick of Artie burns fifth year option after this year, this going to be very talked about question as the year progresses. You know, that might depend on how well bud depre- does, but you know what my gut is actually saying, no. Especially if they get burnt with bud and I know that's two completely different positions. But you know, they bring it back bud, but they have some options at the corner position, and I think they're going to draft high at corner. Again, you know, if you still have Joe Haden around next year, which kind of expect to know I, I don't think they're going to if he continues having the problems of these having. We're talking about this right now on the live chat. Everyone saying, no, no, no. I think if we talked about this year ago and said, are they going to pick up depre- option? Everyone be saying, no, no, no. And what happened? Yes, yes. Yes. He was signed because this dealers don't like to admit that they whiffed on a first round pick even though they did twice back to back and and l. Busta Jarvis Jones. Let's not forget about that guy. So they don't have the desk pedigree in the first round picking defenders that still. There you go. The questions have run dry. That's fine because I thought this was a good show. I hope that what we gave you tonight is just a little bit of insight on the ravens and Steelers this of coming game because it is different. There was a time where when you say, okay, let's get ready for Steelers, ravens. Everyone say, okay, get ready for a ten, seven game, or let's get ready for nine to six. And it's just not that way anymore. And that's kind of driving with the entire NFL. So there's a lot to talk about. There's a lot of digest and I hope that you all enjoyed the show. I hope you keep watching. You know, it is what it is. I hope this used win. I hope they play well, and it's going to be a good game Brian. What are your final thoughts before we send it off for the evening? You know what? No matter how this game shapes up. It is going to go down as one of the better, the better games in this rivalry. These are two teams that are primed for each other. They play better when they play against each other. And you know, you can throw out record books. The records are close, but it just doesn't matter. It Steelers, it's ravens. It's Yankees, Red Sox to me, it's it's one of the great rivalries. It's becoming penguins capitals. If you wanna go ahead and put it there. But if you even want to throw in a hockey comparison, it's going to be penguins flyers just for the fact that they're going to beat each other up. This is going to be a physical game. It's not gonna be pretty, but it is going to go down to the end and you're gonna hear all Michaels and Chris Collins worth talking about how they had another beauty on Sunday night football. You know what I miss about this. This rivalry. This happened. With the gangs Red Sox to it's it's kind of watered down a little bit. You hear players talking about, you know, we respect these guys and flab that he's a first ballot hall of Famer man. You know what I miss. I miss Hines, ward, cheap, shotting Ed Reed, right in the flip in mouth is what I miss you want outside miss. I've as Joey Puerto going on the team bus trying to go after Ray Lewis. That's what I miss. I'm missed the anger that these two teams out in each other because you know where that when it went to went to Cincinnati and in its, it's Cincinnati really Cincinnati in this year's hate. Each other, the Baltimore Ravens and Steelers used to hate each other. Now that's all we're chummy chummy come on man. This is AFC north football, ravens gimme a frigging break. I wanna see these guys going out killing each other because that's what makes rivalry great. I agree with you wholeheartedly, but we ran about t- years ago we had a rate your hate in the between Baltimore and Cincinnati, and it came out right at the same time that when the vont has Burr fact birthed stuff was happening. And when he was just terrorizing Pittsburgh and Pittsburgh fans were hating more and the consensus was the fact that we hate Cincinnati so much more than we do Baltimore effect. We have a healthy respect, and this is fan saying it and I looked at Baltimore, did the same exact thing at the same time. Because right after birth had a cheap shot, they had one of their tight ends might have been max Williams that that just got completely plastered the next week. Bye bye. Bertha cct and they were in the same boat in. So when I talk about living in Maryland and I talk about, I talked to ravens fan all the time. I say the same joke every single time I. I say, what do Steeler fans and and raven fans have in common. We both hate Cincinnati, and that's words gone too. But trust me, they strapped those helmets on they go up against each other. There's no love lost for sixty minutes. Michael Crabtree has never played in this rivalry. He's already chiming in on what this reverie means for a guy coming in. So I agree with you that then, eh is not there, but it could come back in a heartbeat and I think something's going to something's gonna make it come back just like Steve Smith almost made a comeback a year or two ago. Yeah, my Mitchell tried, but he's an idiot and that's not good representation. Where's the regard Ben? How broken scapula by Ray Lewis and his first game as a rookie like, that's what this. That's what this used to be. He broke his scapula. It wasn't skip you. I'm sorry. I said jaw earlier on what scapula. Thank you. This was compared to you when he broke his. This doctor said. You only see this in car accidents? Not in football games. That's incredible. That's what this used to be. That was a bounty was. Come on, like I care if it makes it more entertaining. That's what I care about. But you know what a anyways. Folks that are listening. We appreciate your time. I do always say that if you're not checking behind this curtain dot com for all your Pittsburgh Steelers needs my gosh, I don't know what you're doing. We're putting them as double digit articles at day. So check throughout the day because there's new stuff. Join the group comment. It's a great community, but also check out the article for this podcast on behind the curtain on it'll run at five thirty AM or six AM tomorrow morning in that article blinks if you're an apple user, if you're an Android user few to go in, subscribe to our channel which is behind this deal curtain podcast network in on their, you'll get everything. You'll get the Steelers postgame with Lance and myself. You'll get the Steelers hangover with Brian and Tony. You'll get the standards, the standard, Lance myself. You'll get this show the Steelers preview and a new show. It's going to air tomorrow and that is gimme five by Zach Parnes. And that's our, that's our line of this five shows. A week. It's good stuff. And if you didn't know you're listening on podcast, holy crap. They have a YouTube channel. We do go to YouTube dot com. We'll search BTS's Steelers, radio subscribe like comment. We appreciate it. So Brian, I thank you for your time listeners. May she a check out all the shows and enjoy the game on Sunday. We'll see you Sunday night late for another Steelers. Postgame have a good one.

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