When the Ravens heard that Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was ruled out for Sunday’s game, the reactions were mixed.
The news brought up a popular question from the media on Wednesday: Do the Ravens wish they were going up against the Steelers with Roethlisberger in the lineup?
“I wouldn’t say you are necessarily disappointed when you find out those guys aren’t playing,” quarterback
“We do want them at their best so we don’t hear, ‘Oh we didn’t have this guy, this guy wasn’t at his finest, all that stuff,” Cody said.
The reality is that neither team is at their “best” because they have both dealt with significant injuries.
The Ravens are without linebacker
In addition to Roethlisberger’s injury, the Steelers are likely to be without safety Troy Polamalu because of a lingering calf strain. Running back Rashard Mendenhall (Achilles), wide receiver Antonio Brown (ankle) and safety Ryan Clark (concussion) are also all in danger of missing Sunday’s game.
Both teams are banged up, and Head Coach John Harbaugh didn’t want make a big deal out of the injuries.
“We don’t really concern ourselves with injuries,” Harbaugh said. “We haven’t concerned ourselves with our own team’s injuries. Why are we going to concern ourselves with somebody else’s injuries? Our focus is going to be on the team that we are going to play – it always is – and playing as well as we can play.”
Steelers Head Coach Mike Tomlin took a similar approach.
“We don’t concern ourselves with the injured ones; we concern ourselves with the readiness and the play of the healthy ones,” Tomlin said on a conference call with the Baltimore media. “The guys that have been healthy have delivered above the line of performance for us, and we expect that to continue.”
Few teams in the NFL have the luxury of being a healthy group at this point of the season, and moving on without star players is just part of the game for most teams.
“This is a tough league, and sometimes things happen to guys that don’t allow them to get out there on Sunday.” Flacco said. “That’s just the way it is, and we can’t really put too much thought into that. We just have to go out there and play the game. A win is not going to be any different to us just because a couple of their guys aren’t playing."