No Better Time To End Big Ben Streak

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The Ravens got their first win in Pittsburgh during the Head CoachJohn Harbaugh-quarterback Joe Flacco era in Week 4.

They've even beaten the Steelers six out of the last seven meetings at M&T Bank Stadium, with the lone loss coming on a controversial touchdown in 2008.

But the Ravens haven't been able to topple Big Ben – not recently at least.

Baltimore hasn't beaten Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger since 2006.

It's a hurdle the Ravens will have to clear if they're going to win Sunday's crucial game for control of the AFC North.

"That's a horrible stat," linebacker Terrell Suggs said. "Well, there's no game better than this one to break that streak."

Roethlisberger owns a career 7-2 mark against the Ravens.

Asked what he attributed that to, Roethlisberger said, "I have no idea. Luck?"

Here's a quick rundown since 2006.

That's the last time the Ravens swept the Steelers. During the two regular season games, Roethlisberger, who was in his third season under center, took a combined 14 sacks and threw four interceptions.

He returned with five touchdowns in his next meeting versus the Ravens in 2007, but didn't play in the rematch in Baltimore. In 2008, Roethlisberger pulled off a three-peat against Baltimore, leading the Steelers to their second Super Bowl victory under his guidance.

Last year, Roethlisberger once again missed the M&T Bank Stadium showdown, as an injury forced backup Dennis Dixon into the starting role. He returned for the Week 16 rematch in Pittsburgh, pulling out a 23-20 win.

Roethlisberger didn't play in Pittsburgh earlier this season, this time due to suspension. He was watching from his home when quarterback Charlie Batch threw an interception to Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis to seal a 17-14 Ravens victory.

Would it have been different with Roethlisberger out there?

"It's too hard to tell," Roethlisberger said.

Lewis certainly thinks it would have. The Ravens' defensive leader, who exchanged text messages with Roethlisberger during his tumultuous offseason, said there's different "energy" with Roethlisberger.

"Ben is the ultimate competitor," Lewis said. "He brings a great confidence to that ball club that [he] can keep plays going when they're not supposed to be going. I just think they are who they are with Ben Roethlisberger."

With or without Roethlisberger in the game, the Steelers run the same offense. But when that offense goes out the window is when Roethlisberger shines. His ability to extend plays has given the Ravens fits over the years.

As cornerback Lardarius Webb said, "the play doesn't start for us until he breaks a tackle."

"[Their receivers] have two routes," Webb explained. "One before the play, and one after he scrambles. You just have to be prepared for the after-the-scramble play. That's how they get their big plays."

Head Coach John Harbaugh doesn't feel the Ravens defense struggles with anything particular when facing Roethlisberger.

"Not that anyone else doesn't struggle with in this league," Harbaugh said. "He's a good player. He's got a pretty good track record."

The stats back him up. Roethlisberger has an 83.6 career quarterback rating against the Ravens, about nine points lower than his career average. He's been sacked 31 times by the Ravens (the most of any team), including eight times by Suggs (the most of any player).

It's really in the win-loss column where Roethlisberger has had the edge.

So what would it mean to the Ravens to finally get that win over Roethlisberger?

"I think no matter what, when you beat the Steelers, it's a good feeling," quarterback Joe Flacco said. "That's all we're focused on. I don't really think it's going to be any different if we beat Ben."

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