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Tomlin Picks Ravens to win AFC in 2009

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

“You have to like Baltimore,” Tomlin said when asked for a prediction yesterday. “They won 11 games last year with a rookie head coach and a rookie quarterback. They have a good football team. They have a great defense, they have a quarterback who proved he’s their quarterback of the future, he’s a guy on the rise. You have to respect that.”

The Steelers beat Baltimore three times last season, each game by a hair. They won the first in overtime and the second on a controversial touchdown pass with 43 seconds left that clinched the AFC North title and a playoff bye. The Steelers then sewed up their AFC championship when Troy Polamalu returned an interception 40 yards for a touchdown with 4:24 left to beat the Ravens, 23-14.

“It’s great to be a part of something like that,” Tomlin said. “We have a great deal of respect for those guys, the competitors, the spirit. When you think about the matchup — and I thought a lot about it since the season ended — I think it indicates the reflection of the leadership. When you talk about guys like Ray Lewis, James Farrior, [Derrick] Mason, [Hines] Ward — those games play out the way they probably should. And the spirited football play from guys, they have a passion for the game and a willingness to compete, is probably unparalleled.”

I’m glad to see that Coach Tomlin understands what his team is up against.

But seriously, I wouldn’t expect the guy to pick his own team. He’d get much more of a negative reaction in the press if he did.

He also threw the Patriots in the mix again as well since Tom Brady should be back.

I should also point out Tomlin’s pick from last year — The Cleveland Browns. And that worked out well.

So, maybe Baltimore doesn’t want his seal of approval.

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