The Ravens’ overwhelming 35-7 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday earned the team a measure of respect from Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth.
Collinsworth, a commentator for NBC’s Sunday Night Football, pointed out that the Steelers were one of four division winners from last season who flopped in their season openers.
“The thing that is most interesting about today as far as I was concerned, four division winners from a season ago – Pittsburgh, Indy, Kansas City and Atlanta – none of them scored more than 12 points on the afternoon,” Collinsworth said. “All of them got blown out. It’s one thing to lose on opening day. It’s another to get embarrassed in many ways. For Pittsburgh, maybe they said one too many things about [quarterback] Joe Flacco this offseason. The Ravens came out to play.”
Michaels, who joins Collinsworth as a commentator on those Sunday night contests, said the Ravens-Steelers series has emerged as the most intense in the NFL.
“This has become the best rivalry in the National Football League at this moment in time, and more certainly now than before because Peyton Manning is not with Indianapolis and doesn’t figure to be for a while,” Michaels said. “So I’m going to say that this has supplanted Indianapolis-New England. A big, big, big leg up for the Baltimore Ravens today. A tremendous win for them and this is a team right now that really has to be considered a very serious Super Bowl contender.”Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun