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Can the Steelers “that dude defense” stop the Ravens and RG3 in their tracks?

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Robert Griffen III is familiar with the Steelers, but will he be able to put a dagger in Pittsburgh’s playoff hopes?

Baltimore Ravens v Los Angeles Rams Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

The current situation the Pittsburgh Steelers find themselves in heading into Week 17 is a precarious one. No longer in control of their own destiny, the easiest way into the playoffs is by beating the Ravens and hoping the Houston Texans can beat the Tennessee Titans.

A lot that needs to take place, but the question remains can the Steelers beat the Ravens as they rest several starters?

Below are the players who won’t be dressing for Baltimore in Week 17 at M&T Bank Stadium:

QB Lamar Jackson
G Marshall Yanda
S Earl Thomas
DT Brandon Williams
RB Mark Ingram

Those are the players head coach John Harbaugh officially listed as out during his Monday press conference, which should be a boost for the Steelers. After all, it is because of this the Steelers are considered 2-point favorites on the road.

There isn’t a lot of optimism surrounding the Steelers’ offense, but their defense is one of the best in the league. They rank 4th overall in terms of yards given up, and are tied for first in the NFL when it comes to takeaways.

Can the defense stand up and shut down the Ravens’ offense with Griffin at the helm? Griffin is preparing for a very good “that dude” defense.

“It’s a very, very, very good defense, great defense, not only statistically, but they’re what you call a ‘That Dude Defense.’ They have that dude and that dude and that dude and that dude, so I know they’re not going to come into ‘The Bank’ and lay down. They have everything to play for, and they have great players.” Griffin told Teresa Varley of Steelers.com.

“It’s going to be a physical game. It always is between the Ravens and the Steelers. That’s kind of what we’re focusing on.”

The Steelers will need their defense to stand tall and not just make plays, but set up their offense with quality scoring options. At this point, some fans are suggesting if the Steelers don’t score a defensive touchdown the team might not be able to put up enough points to actually defeat even the Raven’s backups.

That is a tremendous amount of pressure on the defense, but nothing Keith Butler’s unit isn’t used to throughout the 2019 season with Mason Rudolph and Devlin Hodges filling in for the injured Ben Roethlisberger.

Can the “that dude” defense make enough plays to win and help the Steelers’ odds of making the playoffs? Only time will tell, but it seems as if that might be the only way the Steelers put up points, after scoring just 10 in the last two games.

Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black-and-gold as they prepare for the Ravens in the regular season finale.