The Ravens now have the NFL's longest losing streak. On most weeks when getting set to face the Pittsburgh Steelers with third-stringers at quarterback and running back, the Ravens would be packing a knife for a gun fight. Given that the Steelers have little to play for, the Ravens might have a shot.
Troy Smith, QB: Troy Smith makes his second NFL start and you can raise the bar a little for your expectations since this will be his first home start. He has thrown only one touchdown -- a late, meaningless strike against the Seattle Seahawks last week -- and hasn't completed 50 percent of his passes. But the Steelers would need to rest several of their defensive parts before I had any confidence in him for my fantasy team. Namely, their whole starting unit. Here's a couple of interesting notes thanks to The Sports Xchange: the Ravens are 0-10 when not scoring first and 0-8 when losing the coin toss.
Musa Smith, RB: It's time to face the Musa as Musa Smith makes his first NFL start. Although that was an awful joke, the reality is that Smith might have some fantasy value. In a year where Ryan Grant, Selvin Young and a slew of other second-day draft picks or undrafted prospects have made significant impacts, Smith might do the same. He should be an OK flex play in a deep league.
Derrick Mason, WR: Even though he found the end zone last week, Derrick Mason is an extremely risky/borderline foolish play because of the quarterback situation. He's the only receiver from this offense worth considering at this point.
Mark Clayton, WR: Mark Clayton is questionable with a back injury. If you are starting him in your championship game, I hope you have a 50-point head start.
Lee Vickers, TE: With Todd Heap on injured reserve and Quinn Sypniewski and Daniel Wilcox ruled out for Sunday, Lee Vickers should see most of the work at tight end. There's no fantasy value to be had at this position.
Baltimore Defense: With Charlie Batch expected to start for Ben Roethlisberger, the Ravens defense might catch a break. The problem is that their success, as usual, hinges on what the offense can accomplish. If they can move the chains, give the defense a break and put up a few points, the Ravens might be a decent play. If they turn it over and put the defense in as many awful situations as they did during the previous meeting, the Ravens defense could get blitzed. On paper, this contest has the appearance of a low-scoring one.