Sports

Steelers' Byron Leftwich earned Ravens' respect

SportsFootballBaltimore RavensPittsburgh SteelersByron LeftwichJameel McClainHaloti Ngata

PITTSBURGH – Byron Leftwich completed less than 50 percent of his throws and earned a 51.3 passer rating in the Pittsburgh Steelers’ 13-10 loss to the Ravens on Sunday night at Heinz Field, but the 32-year-old quarterback earned a measure of respect from a few Ravens defensive players.

Asked if Leftwich is still dangerous in his 10th year in the NFL, Ravens defensive tackle Haloti Ngata replied, “He definitely is dangerous. You saw him throw down the field. [He is] great at throwing that deep ball. He can still throw it low and the underneath throws. We’ve got to get him because we’ll see him in two weeks.”

Aside from his 31-yard touchdown run to open the game, Leftwich was held largely in check by the Ravens. He ended the Steelers’ penultimate series of the contest with an incompletion and a sack and then completed just two of six passes on the final possession of the game.

Leftwich is expected to start in Pittsburgh’s next game at the Cleveland Browns, but he could take a seat when these teams meet on Dec. 2 because starter Ben Roethlisberger might return from the dislocated rib and sprained right throwing shoulder that sidelined him Sunday night.

Still, inside linebacker Jameel McClain left with a favorable impression of Leftwich.

“Like I said before, he’s a very capable quarterback,” McClain said. “He can make all the throws. But it was our day. We got after him like we were supposed to, and the good thing is, we see him in two weeks and go right back into it. The same type of game. It never changes, and it’s been like that forever. So we’ll see them and we’ll see Byron again.”

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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