Ravens revitalized after 23-20 overtime win against Steelers

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Ravens Edge Steelers, Avoid 0-4 Start


PITTSBURGH (AP) — John Harbaugh considered going for it. Joe Flacco had other ideas.

Why risk extending the worst start in Baltimore Ravens' history when you've got a kicker with one of the best legs in the game waiting to go do his job?

So Harbaugh — not for the first time — listened to his quarterback. And Justin Tucker — not for the first time — sent the Ravens sprinting off the field in triumph.

Tucker drilled a 52-yard through the tricky Heinz Field winds with 5:08 left in overtime to give Baltimore its first victory of the season, 23-20 over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Thursday night. Tucker's 42-yarder with 3 seconds left sent the game to the extra period and his winner was good all the way.

"It's one of the most electric stadiums to play in in the NFL," Tucker said. "So to be able to come in and win in such a dramatic fashion with just a consummate team effort, it's really special."

The Ravens, desperately trying to avoid a hole that would all but end their playoff hopes a quarter of the way into the season, responded emphatically while rallying from a 13-point second-half deficit. Justin Forsett ran for 150 yards for Baltimore. Flacco threw a touchdown pass and did just enough late, though Baltimore (1-3) got plenty of help from the Steelers (2-2).

"The finish is what counts," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. "The finish is what our guys were able to accomplish."

The Steelers, not so much.

Kicker Josh Scobee, acquired from Jacksonville in August after injuries to Shaun Suisham and Garrett Hartley, had two chances to give Pittsburgh some cushion late in the fourth quarter only to pull both kicks wide left.

"It's pretty frustrating," Scobee said. "I feel like I let the team down. It's not something I ever want to remember doing. It's just a bad feeling."

One he might not get a chance to shake with the Steelers after coach Mike Tomlin promised to "turn the stones over" in an effort to get back on track.

"We have to find ways to win games," Tomlin said. "Obviously, (kicking) is an element of it. It was an element of the outcome tonight."

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Ravens revitalized after 23-20 overtime win against Steelers
ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 14: A fan of the Atlanta Falcons watches the action against the Philadelphia Eagles at the Georgia Dome on September 14, 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA, PA - OCTOBER 11: A Philadelphia Eagles fan looks on during the game against the New Orleans Saints on October 11, 2015 at Lincoln Financial field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OH - NOVEMBER 5: A fan of the Cincinnati Bengals cheers on the team as they play the Cleveland Browns during the fourth quarter at Paul Brown Stadium on November 5, 2015 in Cincinnati, Ohio. Cincinnati defeated Cleveland 31-10. (Photo by Andrew Weber/Getty Images)
FOXBOROUGH, MA - OCTOBER 25: A fan dressed for Halloween, wearing a Gronkowski jersey and Frankenstein costume, seen in the stands during the second quarter. The New England Patriots hosted the New York Jets in a regular season NFL football game at Gillette Stadium, Sunday, Oct. 25, 2015. (Photo by Matthew J. Lee/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 18: Denver Broncos fan cheers in the stands during the first quarter against the Cleveland Browns at Cleveland Browns Stadium on October 18, 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Andrew Weber/Getty Images)
NEW ORLEANS, LA - OCTOBER 15: A fan of the New Orleans Saints cheers for his team prior to a game against the Atlanta Falcons at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on October 15, 2015 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images)
NASHVILLE, TN - OCTOBER 18: Fans of the Miami Dolphins celebrate during a game against the Tennessee Titans at LP Field on October 18, 2015 in Nashville, Tennessee. The Dolphins defeated the Titans 38-10. (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Indianapolis Colts fans Michael Hobson walks outside of Lucas Oil Stadium before an NFL football game between the Indianapolis Colts and the New England Patriots in Indianapolis, Sunday, Oct. 18, 2015. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
GREEN BAY, WI - OCTOBER 11: A fan poses for a photo during the game between the Green Bay Packers and the St. Louis Rams at Lambeau Field on October 11, 2015 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Mike McGinnis/Getty Images)
A Detroit Lions fan wears a enlarged baby face during the second half of an NFL football game against the Arizona Cardinals, Sunday, Oct. 11, 2015, in Detroit. (AP Photo/Paul Sancya)
HOUSTON, TX - OCTOBER 08: Houston Texans fans cheer on against the Indianapolis Colts at NRG Stadium on October 8, 2015 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - OCTOBER 4: An Indianapolis Colts fan is seen before the game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at Lucas Oil Stadium on October 4, 2015 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Indianapolis defeated Jacksonville 16-13. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - OCTOBER 04: A Houston Texans fan sits in the stands in the second half against the Atlanta Falcons at the Georgia Dome on October 4, 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OH - OCTOBER 4: A fan of the Cincinnati Bengals celebrates after Jeremy Hill #32 of the Cincinnati Bengals scored a touchdown during the fist quarter of the game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Paul Brown Stadium on October 4, 2015 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
ATLANTA, GA - OCTOBER 04: An Atlanta Falcons fan cheers in the stands in the first half against the Houston Texans at the Georgia Dome on October 4, 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL- OCTOBER 04: A Raiders fan during a game against the Chicago Bears on October 4, 2015 at Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL- OCTOBER 04: Raiders fans during a game against the Chicago Bears on October 4, 2015 at Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by David Banks/Getty Images)
GREEN BAY, WI - SEPTEMBER 28: A Kansas City Chiefs fan watches the game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field on September 28, 2015 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
A fan cheers before an NFL football game between the Green Bay Packers and the Kansas City Chiefs Monday, Sept. 28, 2015, in Green Bay, Wis. (AP Photo/Mike Roemer)
HOUSTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 27: Houston Texans and Tampa Bay Buccaneers fans kid around before the start of the game on September 27, 2015 at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Thomas B. Shea/Getty Images)
BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 27: Cincinnati Bengals fans cheer prior to a game against the Baltimore Ravens at M&T Bank Stadium on September 27, 2015 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
CHARLOTTE, NC - SEPTEMBER 27: A New Orleans Saints fan looks on before the game between the Carolina Panthers and New Orleans Saints at Bank of America Stadium on September 27, 2015 in Charlotte, North Carolina. (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 27: Houston Texans fan pose before the game between the Texans and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on September 27, 2015 at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Thomas B. Shea/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 27: Oakland Raiders fans looks on during the first quarter in the game against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium on September 27, 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
MIAMI GARDENS, FL - SEPTEMBER 27: Miami Dolphins fans look on during a game against the Buffalo Bills at Sun Life Stadium on September 27, 2015 in Miami Gardens, Florida. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
FOXBOROUGH, MA - SEPTEMBER 27: A Patriots fan in the stands during a game between the New England Patriots and the Jacksonville Jaguars at Gillette Stadium on Sunday, Sept. 27, 2015. (Photo by John Tlumacki/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
A New York Jets fan watches play against the Philadelphia Eagles during the first quarter of an NFL football game, Sunday, Sept. 27, 2015, in East Rutherford, N.J. (AP Photo/Adam Hunger)
GLENDALE, AZ - SEPTEMBER 27: Arizona Cardinal fans cheer prior to the start of a game against the San Francisco 49ers at University of Phoenix Stadium on September 27, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 27: A Cleveland Browns fan cheers during the first quarter against the Oakland Raiders at FirstEnergy Stadium on September 27, 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS, IN - SEPTEMBER 21: Indianapolis Colts fans look on against the New York Jets during the game at Lucas Oil Stadium on September 21, 2015 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - SEPTEMBER 20: Fans celebrate the Oakland Raiders before the game against the Baltimore Ravens at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on September 20, 2015 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OH - SEPTEMBER 20: A fan of the Cincinnati Bengals holds up sign in support of the team as the Cincinnati Bengals play the San Diego Chargers at Paul Brown Stadium on September 20, 2015 in Cincinnati, Ohio. Cincinnati defeated San Diego 24-19. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - SEPTEMBER 20: A Minnesota Vikings fan yells during the fourth quarter against the Detroit Lions at TCF Bank Stadium on September 20, 2015 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images)
CLEVELAND, OH - SEPTEMBER 20: A Cleveland fan looks on during a game between the Tennessee Titans and the Tennessee Titans at FirstEnergy Stadium on September 20, 2015 in Cleveland, Ohio. Cleveland won the game 28-14. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
JACKSONVILLE, FL - SEPTEMBER 20: Fans participate in tailgating activities before the game between the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Miami Dolphins at EverBank Field on September 20, 2015 in Jacksonville, Florida. (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
A Philadelphia Eagles' fan wearing a mitre and dressed as a religious figure cheers during the first half of an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2015, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Michael Perez)
GREEN BAY, WI - SEPTEMBER 20: Green Bay Packers fans (L-R) Jane Thiel and Kris Schuelke of Dale, WI pose together before the NFL game against the Seattle Seahawks at Lambeau Field on September 20, 2015 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, IL - SEPTEMBER 20: Arizona Cardinals fan looks on outside the stadium prior to the game against the Chicago Bears at Soldier Field on September 20, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)
KANSAS CITY, MO - SEPTEMBER 17: A Kansas City Chiefs fan cheers during the game against the Denver Broncos at Arrowhead Stadium on September 17, 2015 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Peter G. Aiken/Getty Images)
A Denver Broncos fan cheers during the first half of an NFL football game against the Baltimore Ravens Sunday, Sept. 13, 2015, in Denver. (AP Photo/Jack Dempsey)
FOXBORO, MA - SEPTEMBER 10: A New England Patriots fan looks on while wearing a snorkel in the rain before the game against the Pittsburgh Steelers at Gillette Stadium on September 10, 2015 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Rogash/Getty Images)
Seattle Seahawks fans cheer during the first quarter of an NFL football game between the St. Louis Rams and the Seattle Seahawks Sunday, Sept. 13, 2015, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Tom Gannam)
ATLANTA, GA - SEPTEMBER 14: A fan of the Atlanta Falcons watches the action against the Philadelphia Eagles at the Georgia Dome on September 14, 2015 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
A Philadelphia Eagles fan watches teams warm up before the first half of an NFL football game between the Atlanta Falcons and the Philadelphia Eagles, Monday, Sept. 14, 2015, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
OAKLAND, CA - SEPTEMBER 13: A fan in the stands watches an NFL game between the Cincinnati Bengals and Oakland Raiders at the O.co Coliseum on September 13, 2015 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - SEPTEMBER 13: A fan in the stands watches an NFL game between the Cincinnati Bengals and Oakland Raiders at the O.co Coliseum on September 13, 2015 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
SANTA CLARA, CA - SEPTEMBER 14: A fan sits in the stand during an NFL game betweent the Minnesota Vikings and San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium on September 14, 2015 in Santa Clara, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
LANDOVER, MD - SEPTEMBER 13: A fan looks on prior to a game between the Washington Redskins and the Miami Dolphins at FedExField on September 13, 2015 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
ORCHARD PARK, NY - SEPTEMBER 13: Buffalo Bills fans cheer for their team against the Indianapolis Colts on September 13, 2015 at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park, New York. Buffalo defeats Indianapolis 27-14. (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)
ORCHARD PARK, NY - SEPTEMBER 13: Buffalo Bills fans cheer against the Indianapolis Colts during the first half on September 13, 2015 at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park, New York. Buffalo defeats Indianapolis 27-14. (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)
GLENDALE, AZ - SEPTEMBER 13: Fans of the New Orleans Saints during the NFL game against the Arizona Cardinals at the University of Phoenix Stadium on September 13, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 13: A Houston Texans fan watches the Texans warm-up before playing against the Kansas City Chiefs in a NFL game on September 13, 2015 at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TX - SEPTEMBER 13: Houston Texans fans were not to happy with results against the Kansas City Chiefs at NRG Stadium on September 13, 2015 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
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Some other takeaways from one of the weirder entries in one of the league's most heated rivalries:

FOURTH-DOWN FLUBS: Scobee's botched kicks forced Tomlin to change tactics in overtime. Twice the Steelers faced fourth downs at the edge of Scobee's range. Twice Tomlin opted to go for it. Twice the Steelers put the ball in the hands of backup quarterback Michael Vick rather than running back Le'Veon Bell. Twice the Ravens came up with the stop

"When you lose, you're open to criticism," Tomlin said. "We lost, so I'm not going to try to justify anything that we did."

RUN FORSETT RUN: An inability to get anything going on the ground was a major factor in Baltimore's winless September. Forsett helped change that with his first 100-yard game of the season, including a 33-yard sprint that kickstarted the Ravens' comeback.

VICK'S RETURN: The four-time Pro Bowl quarterback showed brief flashes of his old self while taking over for injured Ben Roethlisberger. Vick completed 19 of 26 passes for 124 yards and a score but was also sacked four times and the Steelers converted just 2 of 13 third downs.

"I'm trying to fill in for Ben and it's a difficult task," Vick said. "I was up for it. I was excited for it. I haven't felt this pain in a long time."

SKID STOPPED: A loss would dropped the Ravens to 0-4, a mark only one team has ever recovered from to make the postseason. Tucker's blast gives them momentum and a few extra days to prepare for Cleveland on Oct. 11.

"We know where we're at," Harbaugh said. "We know what we have to overcome. You can't get two until you get one. This one was a long time coming."

CHOICE WORDS: Ravens wide receiver Steve Smith caught four passes for 24 yards before leaving in the second half with a back contusion and a bad taste in his mouth. Smith said Steelers safety Mike Mitchell — a former teammate when both players were in Carolina — started jawing at him as Smith slowly made his way to the sideline after getting hurt, something Smith didn't exactly need to hear.

"After he hit me he said 'How do you like that?'" Smith said. "The best thing I could do without threatening him and saying that I will assault you when I see him is saying I look forward to playing him again and he's on my lifetime hit list."

The rematch is in Baltimore on Dec. 27.

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