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Week 9 NFL Lines And Odds: Ravens Vs. Steelers

The Pittsburgh Steelers own the narrowest of edges against the Baltimore Ravens--just one half-game--for the AFC South lead. They'll put that advantage on the line this Sunday, Nov. 6, when they host the Ravens at Heinz Field.

Given the teams' proximity in the standings, it's no surprise that the game is projected to be fairly close. According to SB Nation partner OddsShark, the oddsmakers favored the Steelers by three points when the lines opened. Since then, some outlets have moved the line further in Pittsburgh's favor, to 3.5 points.

It'd have been difficult to imagine Sunday's game would be close, if the only game you saw either team play this season was the Ravens' 35-7 shellacking of Pittsburgh in the first week of the season. The Steelers couldn't get out of their own way, committing seven turnovers in the game. But Pittsburgh has risen steadily since then, winning six of their last seven and four straight.

Baltimore hasn't done too badly for itself either, surprising loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars on Oct. 24 notwithstanding. Its defense remains among the strongest all-around in football, ranking No. 2 in points allowed, No. 2 in passing touchdowns allowed, No. 2 in rushing touchdowns allowed, and No. 2 in turnovers forced. However, its offense is what one might call a work in progress: quarterback Joe Flacco has completed just 53.4 percent of his passes and has tossed eight touchdowns in 262 attempts.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.