Steelers need to end turnover drought
December 25th, 2009
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Here is something that does not bode well for the Steelers Sunday, when they play the visiting Ravens in a must-win game for the reigning Super Bowl champions.
Baltimore is 6-1 in games this season in which quarterback Joe Flacco has not thrown an interception. And the Steelers have just eight interceptions this season, none since Nov. 9 when they picked off Kyle Orton three times in a 28-10 win at Denver.
Help for a beleaguered secondary wonít come from All-Pro safety Troy Polamalu, who leads the Steelers with three interceptions despite playing in only five games, for at least another week.
Polamalu (knee) didnít practice again today, and he has been ruled out for the 1 p.m. game at Heinz Field.
Flacco is a different quarterback when he steers clear of interceptions.
In the seven games that he has not committed a turnover via the air this season, the second-year signal caller has a passer rating of over 100 in six of them.
Whether the Steelers harass Flacco into ill-advised passes -- he threw five interceptions in three games against them last season -- or force (and recover) fumbles they need to be more opportunistic Sunday.
They have not had any takeaways since the Ravens lost a pair of fumbles in their 20-17 overtime win against the Steelers on Nov. 29. The Steelers have gone three consecutive games without forcing a turnover, which is unheard of for a team with a well-regarded defense.
If that trend continues against Baltimore, the Steelers may need their offense to win the game for them as what happened last week against Green Bay.