As if enough wasn't on the line late in the season(division championship, first round bye), the Steelers face their most hated rival. To kick off Baltimore week, here are a collection of stories and videos.
Charles Robinson at Yahoo! Sports names Hines Ward vs Bart Scott the #1 feud in the NFL
1. Bart Scott vs. Hines Ward
There is a special dark spot in Scott’s heart, and it’s filled with every nasty thing he wants to unleash on Ward. He never liked the Steelers receiver, but his furor intensified Nov. 2007, when Ward blew up Scott and safety Ed Reed on a pair of running plays. Both plays were legal by the letter of the NFL law, but both lit a fuse under Scott, who threatened to kill Ward late in that Ravens loss. Since then – and despite various warnings from the NFL – Scott has continued a slow burn. He’s watched Ward light up several other players, including the jaw-shattering shot on Cincinnati’s Rivers, and dreamt of a day he could return the favor without a fine from the NFL.
“There’s nothing mano y mano about that,” Scott said of Ward’s penchant for peeling back and leveling defenders who aren’t looking. “You put him in a phone booth with half those guys that he’s taking those shots at, he’d get his a** whupped. “If we’re going to play that way, let’s play that way. Let’s not play that way just when it benefits you, let’s play that way all the time. That means when Keith Rivers is defenseless and you take a shot and break his jaw, that means when you come across the middle and you’re defenseless, I get to take that shot. … That’s not man on man. That’s a cheap-shot artist. If you’re going to take a shot, that’s cool. But allow me to take mine without a $35,000 fine.”
Scott’s anger has added intensity to an already white-hot disdain between the two teams. A disgust that included linebacker Terrell Suggs at one point suggesting the team had a bounty on Ward and running back Rashard Mendenhall. The Ravens knocked out Mendenhall with a season-ending shoulder injury when the teams met in September. Suggs later recanted the notion of a bounty, but only after an NFL official met with him about it in Baltimore.
Asked about Suggs’ talk of a bounty, Scott replied, “Whatever Suggs said about Mendenhall or Hines or whoever, everything was done cleanly on our side. Mendenhall got put out the game legally. What he said about a bounty, I don’t understand why people deem that as something dirty.”
When you talk to Ward about it all, he gives only a Cheshire grin. It seems there is a certain sense of satisfaction to be gotten when other players are out there thinking about you.
“I’d be mad too if a 200-pound wideout knocked me out,” Ward said. “I’d get upset at that, too. He has every right to be upset. But a cheap shot? If that’s what he wants to call it, then I’m a cheap shot.
“Maybe they feel like their defense wants to bully everybody, and we’re not bullied by them. We know they’re going to hit us in the mouth and we’re going to hit back. And they don’t particularly like that.”
The aforementioned Hines Ward hits on Ed Reed and Bart Scott.
Let's not forget James Harrison's incredible game on MNF last year. His stat line looked like this: 3 forced fumbles, 1 fumble recovery, 1 interception, 3.5 sacks, and 9 tackles. The always respectful Ravens said this after the game: "when a little 5-9 linebacker gets four sacks. That will never happen again in his life. He knows that.”
You stay classy Baltimore