Big Ben’s Absence Looms in Rivalry Game
While the rib injury Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger sustained on Monday is a rare one, Big Ben being out of the lineup for the bi-annual Steelers/Ravens AFC North showdown is not rare at all.
Since becoming the starting quarterback as a rookie in 2004, Roethlisberger has missed four games against the Baltimore Ravens. The Steelers are 0-4 without Roethlisberger under center.
The oddsmakers, as expected, have adjusted the line accordingly. The Steelers, expected to be a 3.5-point favorite with a healthy Roethlisberger are now +3 or higher at most sportsbooks. The adjustment is an enormous one for an NFL game, especially one with a total of only 41. Points are at a premium in this rivalry, and the oddsmakers consider the loss of Roethlisberger to be worth 6.5 points.
Here are the four occasions the Steelers faced the Ravens with someone besides Roethlisberger under center.
Nov. 20, 2005
Pittsburgh at Baltimore
Ravens 16, Steelers 13 (OT)
Roethlisberger was out with a knee injury for the Steelers Week 11 matchup with the Ravens. Without Ben, the 7-2 Steelers fell to the 2-7 Ravens in overtime in Baltimore as third-stringer Tommy Maddox started for the Steelers. The Steelers would go on to win the Super Bowl with a healthy Roethlisberger.
Dec. 30, 2007
Pittsburgh at Baltimore
Ravens 27, Steelers 21
With nothing to play for, the Steelers went on the road to Baltimore with Charlie Batch starting and Roethlisberger resting. Still, the oddsmakers made the AFC North Champion Steelers favorites, but, once again, the Ravens beat a Steelers backup.
Nov. 29, 2009
Pittsburgh at Baltimore
Ravens 20, Steelers 17 (OT)
Dennis Dixon found himself in his first starting role on a Sunday night in Baltimore as Roethlisberger was forced out of the lineup with a concussion. The Steelers were considered underdogs, getting nine points to an above-average Baltimore team. Dixon delivered a gutsy performance and the Steelers forced overtime where the Ravens ultimately prevailed thanks to a Dixon interception.
Oct. 3, 2010
Baltimore at Pittsburgh
Ravens 17, Steelers 14
Serving the final game of a four-game suspension, Roethlisberger was once again unavailable against the Ravens. The Steelers had gone 3-0 without Ben and they were well on their way to a 4-0 start behind strong play from Charlie Batch. However, after leading for a majority of the game, the Steelers defense allowed Joe Flacco to drive down the field with just over a minute left to connect on a game-winning touchdown pass to T.J. Houshmanzadeh with 32 seconds left.
The Steelers are 9-5 against the Ravens with Roethlisberger and 0-4 against them without their franchise quarterback. However the Steelers are 5-1 against the spread over the last five seasons without Roethlisberger, and they have showed gutsy performances against their hated rivals without Roethlisberger. The line movement is significant, especially for a Baltimore team that struggles immensely on the road. And while the Steelers have never beaten the Ravens without Roethlisberger, they have never started Byron Leftwich against them. Leftwich has been a proven starter in the league. Even though the Ravens are 4-0 against the Steelers without Roethlisberger, three of the wins were by exactly three points. So the most important thing may be the line move considering now the Ravens are giving three points and possibly more.
- LA Dodgers
- Larry Ness
- April 28, 2016 - 10:10 PM
- Offered at:
- bookmaker @ -121 LA Dodgers
Fernandez can be had away from Marlins Park & losing FOUR in a row...
Kenta Maeda, the 28-year-old native of Osaka, has had remarkable start to his first season in the major leagues, opening with four straight quality starts. The history book reveals that 76 pitchers have opened their careers with four straight quality starts (since 1913) but Maeda ranks as the ONLY one to allow just one ER in that four-game span. He's worked at least six innings in each of his four outings with that lone ER coming on a solo HR by San Francisco's Joe Panik back on April 17 .
The bad news is, that Miami has limited LA to a measly five runs, 15 hits and an 0-for-13 showing with runners in scoring position over three games to take its first series at Chavez Ravine since 2010. The Dodgers will take the field tonight looking to avoid being swept at home by the surging Marlins for the first time-ever and it's even more of a bitter pill to swallow as Miami is led by Don Mattingly, who managed LA from 2011 through 2015.
Mattingly will hand the ball to Jose Fernandez (1-2, 4.37 ERA), who looks to bounce back from a rough outing at San Francisco this past Saturday (he allowed four ERs on seven hits and three walks in six innings). The 23-year-old Cuban has been a different pitcher on the road during his brief career, going 5-10 with a 3.81 ERA as opposed to 18-1 with a 1.61 ERA at home. Los Angeles has yet to defeat Fernandez, who is 2-0 with a 2.84 ERA in three outings (Marlins are 3-0).