Kickoff: 1 p.m., Acrisure Stadium
TV: WJZ Channel 13 (Baltimore), WUSA Channel 9 (Washington), Paramount + and more. CBS crew Ian Eagle (play-by-play), Charles Davis (analyst), Evan Washburn (sideline)
Radio: WBAL 1090 AM & 98 Rock 97.9 FM, Sirius XM Chs. 134 or 387. Ravens crew Gerry Sandusky (play-by-play), Rod Woodson (analyst); ESPN Radio crew Steve Levy (play-by-play), Sal Paolantonio (analyst)
They split the season series in 2022, but the Steelers have won five of the last six and lead the all-time series, 33-25, including regular season and postseason. They last met in Week 17 last season when Pittsburgh rallied for a 16-13 victory at M&T Bank Stadium. Baltimore led 13-3 in the third quarter, but Kenny Pickett threw a game-winning 13-yard touchdown pass to Najee Harris with 56 seconds left to play. Tyler Huntley tossed a 7-yard touchdown pass to Isaiah Likely in the second quarter and Justin Tucker kicked two field goals including a 51-yarder.
Having already won at Cincinnati and Cleveland, Baltimore can finish a road sweep in 2023 against the AFC North by beating Pittsburgh. The Ravens haven't gone 3-0 on the road against the AFC North since 2019. The Steelers haven't scored a touchdown in five quarters and badly need a strong offensive showing, coming off a 30-6 loss against Houston.
Will the Ravens' defense have another dominant day?
The Ravens have been very good defensively, and don't believe they've peaked. They gave up just three points in Week 4, and now key players such as Marlon Humphrey (foot) and Marcus Williams (pectoral) appear on the verge of returning. The additions of veterans Jadeveon Clowney and Kyle Van Noy have made Baltimore's defense even more versatile and cerebral, and Defensive Coordinator Mike Macdonald is effectively game planning from week to week. Pickett (knee) has said he'll start at quarterback despite last week's injury, and this is a huge game for him. If the Steelers don't find answers to their issues on offense, Baltimore's defense will show no mercy.
Will Lamar Jackson start having his way in this rivalry?
Jackson is playing at a high level as a passer (74.3% completions) and runner (four touchdowns) and was superb in Week 4 against the Browns. However, he has 1-2 career record against the Steelers and has missed the last three games against them. While Jackson has impressive records against the Bengals (7-2) and Browns (7-3), Pittsburgh has been his biggest nemesis in the AFC North. The Steelers have intercepted Jackson six times, and he has also fumbled six times against them, losing two. Jackson's ability to avoid turnovers against an opportunistic Pittsburgh defense will be a key to this game.
Which players will the Ravens get back from injuries, and what impact will they have?
Humphrey, Ronnie Stanley (knee), Odell Beckham Jr. (ankle), Williams, and Rashod Bateman (hamstring) all practiced this week after not playing against the Browns. Stanley returning to left tackle could allow Patrick Mekari to possibly swing to right tackle if Morgan Moses (shoulder) doesn't play. Beckham and Bateman are two of Jackson's top targets who would create more possibilities for the deep passing game. Humphrey is the team's best and most versatile cornerback, while Williams is a ranging playmaker at safety. Getting most or all of them back would be a major lift for the Ravens, who have dealt with injuries all season.
Players to Watch
QB Lamar Jackson
The Steelers have elite edge rushers in T. J. Watt and Alex Highsmith, who can make life miserable for quarterbacks. However, Jackson had a masterful game last week, moving smartly to buy more time and making pinpoint throws that gave his targets opportunities to make plays. Jackson's effective running in the red zone is a strength that many teams can't rely on from their quarterback. If Jackson remains in the groove he was in against Cleveland, the Ravens' offense will be difficult to hold down.
ILB Roquan Smith
Containing Pittsburgh's running game led by Harris is a major goal for Baltimore. Smith and inside linebacker Patrick Queen will be keying on Harris, and Smith could also show up in the backfield as a blitzer in some of Macdonald's schemes. A sack by Smith last season against Pickett resulted in a concussion that knocked Pittsburgh's quarterback out of the game. Smith is the tone-setter for Baltimore's defense, and the Ravens-Steelers rivalry is his kind of atmosphere.
OLB Jadeveon Clowney
Clowney has been able to pressure quarterbacks lining up in multiple spots. The Steelers are expected to start rookie left tackle Broderick Jones, and the offensive line has had protection issues, especially when they have fallen behind. Pickett has been sacked 11 times and Clowney would love to increase that total.