The Ravens (1-1) were in total control of their on-field
performance but the result remained of secondary interest to the
continued fallout from Baltimore's recently banished running back
The 27-year-old was released by the Ravens and suspended
indefinitely by the league earlier this week when fresh video
evidence surfaced showing disturbing images of Rice involved in an
act of domestic violence in February.
Rice had originally been suspended for just two games prior to the
release of the new footage and an investigation has now been
launched into the NFL's handling of events.
On the football field, Baltimore made short work of their AFC North
rivals, getting two touchdown passes from Joe Flacco and 152
combined rushing yards from promoted running backs Bernard Pierce
and Justin Forsett.
"The message was pretty straight forward," Ravens coach John
Harbaugh told reporters. "We have a football game to play. We care
about our families. We care about the Rice family.
"I thought our guys handled it tremendously with class, with
character and they responded."
Baltimore seized a 10-0 lead in the second quarter and Pittsburgh
(1-1) responded with two field goals before the Ravens closed the
game with 16 unanswered points.
Flacco connected with tight end Owen Daniels on both touchdown
passes, putting his home team ahead 17-6 on the second strike late
in the third. In the fourth quarter, Baltimore kicker Justin Tucker
booted three of his four field goals to complete the scoring.
[to top of second column]
Pittsburgh had opened the season with a nail-biting 30-27 win over
Cleveland on Sunday but failed to reach the end zone in Baltimore.
Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger threw for 217 yards but most of that
distance came with the game out of reach. He tossed one interception
and the Steelers also coughed up a pair of fumbles.
"We just kept getting behind the chains and we can't do that,"
Roethlisberger said. "I don't think it was horrible. You have to
give them a lot of credit. They are a good defense."
(Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; Editing by John O'Brien)
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