Pittsburgh Steelers star T.J. Watt is clear to face the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday after being activated from the reserve/COVID list.

The push rusher had been placed on the list on Monday in the latest setback in Pittsburgh's season, the Steelers having previously seen Ben Roethlisberger and Minkah Fitzpatrick also miss time due to positive tests.

Watt had only just returned after injury kept him out of the 41-10 rout at the hands of the Cincinnati Bengals, in which he recorded just two combined tackles.

The Steelers are said to have been sending practice footage to Watt all week so that he is apprised of the team's plan to face the Ravens.

Despite a difficult season for the Steelers (5-5-1) on the whole, Watt is a candidate for the AP Defensive Player of the Year, with 12.5 sacks and 41 tackles in nine games.

His 13 tackles for loss put him fourth in the NFL this season, behind Myles Garrett (15) and Micah Parsons and Nick Bosa (both 16)

The slumping Pittsburgh Steelers have been dealt a blow after placing star T.J. Watt on the reserve/COVID-19 list.

Pittsburgh have been impacted by coronavirus this NFL season, with star quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and Minkah Fitzpatrick both missing time due to positive tests.

Steelers push rusher Watt is the latest to land on the COVID-19 list after returning from a one-week absence caused by knee and hip injuries in Sunday's 41-10 rout at the hands of the Cincinnati Bengals.

Watt recorded just two combined tackles as the Steelers suffered their first season sweep at the hands of the Bengals since 2009, stretching their winless run to three games.

The three-time Pro Bowler, who has missed two games this season, is now likely to sit out Sunday's matchup against the Baltimore Ravens.

Pittsburgh's humbling defeat left the Steelers 5-5-1 but still within striking distance of the final AFC Wild Card spot, which is currently possessed by the Los Angeles Chargers, who defeated Watt's team 41-37 in Week 11.

The Steelers' final six games are all against playoff contenders. They face the Ravens twice and also have games with the Minnesota Vikings, Tennessee Titans, Kansas City Chiefs and Cleveland Browns.

Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh praised Lamar Jackson for his response to the shock of throwing four interceptions against the Cleveland Browns.

Former MVP Jackson became the fourth quarterback in the past 25 seasons to throw four interceptions targeting a single player – in this case, Mark Andrews – in a game after Eli Manning-Hakeem Nicks, Luke McCown-Mike Thomas and Mark Sanchez-Braylon Edwards.

He was also sacked twice on Sunday as he finished with 20-of-32 passing for 165 yards.

However, Jackson's throw for Andrews' touchdown gave the Ravens a 13-3 advantage and they saw out a 16-10 victory to go top of the AFC standings.

The win also ended a run of 41 consecutive games in which a quarterback to throw four interceptions lost the game. The last man to win after such a performance was Andy Dalton for the Cincinnati Bengals against the Ravens in 2013.

The Ravens became the only team in the Super Bowl era to score fewer than 17 points, have fewer than 325 yards in total and throw at least four more interceptions than their opponents and still win the game.

Harbaugh was full of admiration for the way Jackson did not allow himself to be overawed by his mistakes.

"Nobody gets flustered, and it starts with Lamar," he said. "Lamar wants those plays back and he's a massive competitor. Yet he doesn't let it take control of him. He's able to push it aside and he's able to go play the next series and give you great football.

"It's really a rare trait. To me, that's one of the things that makes him the quarterback that he is."

Jackson himself said: "I feel like those drives, when the interceptions came, we could've done something on those drives. We could've put points on the board.

"I just told my team, 'That's me. I owe y'all.'

"I mean, it's one game that it happened. They just made great plays on those interceptions. It wasn't like I was throwing it right to them."

The 8-3 Ravens are at the Pittsburgh Steelers next Sunday.

 

The Baltimore Ravens dug deep to edge the Cleveland Browns 16-10, despite Lamar Jackson's woes in the NFL on Sunday.

Jackson threw a career-high four interceptions at home to the Browns in Baltimore, but the Ravens still prevailed.

Ravens quarterback Jackson threw four interceptions when targeting team-mate Mark Andrews in Week 12 – the former MVP becoming the fourth QB in the last 25 seasons to throw four INT targeting a single player in a game after Eli Manning-Hakeem Nicks, Luke McCown-Mike Thomas and Mark Sanchez-Braylon Edwards.

Jackson was 20-of-32 passing for 165 yards and a touchdown, while he was sacked twice by the visiting Browns.

That touchdown was a rare highlight on a rough night for Jackson, whose 13-yard throw to Andrews was enough to lift the Ravens after he scrambled back to around the 35-yard line before lofting a pass to the latter in the end zone.

The Jackson-Andrews completion gave the Ravens (8-3) a 13-3 lead, which they did not relinquish en route to claiming top spot in the AFC standings.

Cleveland quarterback Baker Mayfield combined with David Njoku for a 20-yard TD pass late in the third period, but it was not enough for the Browns (6-6).

Tyler Huntley came in for unwell Baltimore Ravens superstar Lamar Jackson on a day fellow undrafted quarterback Tim Boyle also made his first NFL start.

Huntley has served as Jackson's backup in Baltimore for the past two years since going undrafted in 2020 but has so far been restricted to just 29 passes and 16 carries across five games in the regular season and playoffs.

He threw 13 passes in last year's playoff loss to the Buffalo Bills, completing only six for a passer rating of 59.8 after Jackson exited with concussion.

Huntley was given his chance from the start against the Chicago Bears with Jackson missing due to a non-coronavirus illness.

The absence of the 2019 NFL MVP came as a blow to the Ravens, whose offense is ranked second in the league with 414.1 total net yards per game this year. Jackson ranks ninth for passing yards (2,447) and seventh for rushing yards (639), leading all QBs in the latter.

Elsewhere on Sunday, Boyle lined up under center for the Detroit Lions against the Cleveland Browns as Jared Goff recovers from an oblique muscle injury.

Boyle had not previously featured for the Lions but did play 11 times across two seasons with the Green Bay Packers, albeit he threw for just 15 yards, was sacked for 11 yards and lost a further 16 rushing.

The Lions' offense ranks 27th (319.4 net yards), with Goff throwing just eight touchdowns and six interceptions across nine games.

Baltimore Ravens star Lamar Jackson is listed as questionable for Sunday's NFL clash with the Chicago Bears.

Ravens quarterback Jackson is in doubt to face the Bears due to an illness, the franchise announced on Saturday.

Former MVP Jackson returned for full practice on Friday, having missed two days with an illness.

Jackson has only missed two games in his four-year career in the NFL – sitting out the 2019 season finale (rest) and a Week 12 fixture in 2020 (COVID-19).

Baltimore's Jackson rushed nine times for 39 yards in the Week 10 loss to the Miami Dolphins for an average of 4.3 yards, his lowest mark since Week 4 against Denver Broncos. However, his 6.0 yards per carry this season leads the league amongst qualified players, according to Stats Perform.

This season, Jackson has completed 199 of his 309 passes for 2,447 yards and 14 touchdowns with a 93.1 passer rating, while he has rushed for two scores and 639 yards.

The Ravens, who top the AFC North with a 6-3 record, have lost their last two games against the Bears but both encounters have gone to overtime and were decided by a field goal.

The Baltimore Ravens are bullish that quarterback Lamar Jackson missing practice due to a non-COVID-related illness this week is not a "big deal" ahead of Sunday's game against the Chicago Bears.

Jackson was not part of Thursday practice due to illness, having been sent home from the team facility on Wednesday morning.

Ravens head coach John Harbaugh clarified the illness was not COVID-related, easing doubts about Jackson's availability for Sunday's game, but Thursday's practice was the fourth time he has missed a session this season.

"I don't really think it's that big of a deal," Ravens center Bradley Bozeman said on Jackson's absences. "I know Lamar is doing his things at home that he needs to do. He's watching plays. He's getting everything right at home.

"When he comes back in, he's not going to miss a step. Week in and week out, he's continued to build on that and step up to the plate when he needs to. I don't see that being an issue."

The Ravens quarterback is enjoyed an MVP-like season, ranking eighth in the NFL in passing (2,447 yards) with 14 touchdowns and seventh in rushing (639 yards) with two touchdowns.

Ravens offensive coordinator Greg Roman added: "I think he's feeling better."

Lamar Jackson could not lead another fourth-quarter recovery as the Baltimore Ravens suffered a shock loss to the Miami Dolphins on Thursday.

The Ravens entered the game 6-2 with their struggling opponents 2-7, but Baltimore have been run close in a number of their wins this season.

Four times they have trailed in the fourth quarter but come back to win, tying the Los Angeles Chargers for the most fightbacks in the NFL. The Ravens had only four such wins across the previous five years.

But a fifth turnaround proved beyond Jackson and Baltimore in a 22-10 defeat.

They had won each of their previous three meetings with the Dolphins by more than 30 points – tying a league record for one team against another – but this time paid the price for a sloppy start.

The Ravens punted on four of their first six drives – including a pair of three-and-outs – and made and missed a field goal from the other two to head in 6-3 down at halftime.

Crucially, there was precious little improvement in the second half this time, with three more punts in the third quarter and then a fumble that Xavien Howard recovered for a Miami touchdown at the start of the fourth.

Jackson, who had 238 yards passing and just 39 yards rushing, finally led Baltimore back down the field to cut the Dolphins' lead to 15-10, only for Tua Tagovailoa – returning from injury in relief of Jacoby Brissett – to run in another TD.

An interception on third and goal capped a dismal night for Jackson and his team, with the tone set right from the start.

"We've been slow, slow every week. It's ridiculous," the quarterback said. "I don't understand it.

"We've just got to do a better job of hitting the ground running like we're supposed to. That starts by staying calm, just doing us, not putting anything else on our mind."

Miami had success in blitzing the 2019 NFL MVP, who had tossed an accurate, well-thrown pass on just 67.9 per cent of his previous attempts when blitzed this year, the ninth-worst rate in the league.

Jackson believes he and the Ravens are capable of dealing with similar defenses, though.

"Play our game, do us. We don't change for anybody, we'll be good," he said. "There were some plays we left on the field, little mishaps."

Indeed, coach John Harbaugh said he was to blame for the offense being exploited.

"This falls squarely on me as head coach," he said. "We were not prepared as we needed to be prepared, our schemes were not up to snuff. We weren't prepared to execute the way we needed to.

"That's it – not on one player. The players played their hearts out, worked hard all week, they did everything they could to be prepared, and we just weren't ready. That's on me."

The Miami Dolphins ended their drought against the Baltimore Ravens after upstaging Lamar Jackson's visitors 22-10 in the NFL.

Miami had lost their last three games against Baltimore entering Thursday's matchup, with each defeat by more than a 30-point margin – 38-6 in 2016, 40-0 in 2017 and 59-10 in 2019. The only other time an NFL team had three consecutive wins by 30-plus points against a particular team was in 1994-1995 when the San Francisco 49ers dominated the Atlanta Falcons, per Stats Perform.

But the streaking Dolphins (3-7) snapped that skid against the Ravens (6-3) as they celebrated back-to-back victories after Tua Tagovailoa sealed the win with a late touchdown.

It was a tense showdown at Hard Rock Stadium, where the Dolphins took a 6-3 lead into half-time via consecutive field goals from Jason Sanders.

Sanders converted another field goal early in the fourth quarter before Xavier Howard's 49-yard fumble recovery stretched the Dolphins' advantage to 15-3.

Lamar Jackson (26-of-43 passing for 238 yards, a touchdown and interception, while rushing for another 39 yards) found Mark Andrews with less than five minutes remaining to close the deficit, but Tagovailoa had the final say with a rushing TD to ensure Miami emerged triumphant in Week 10.

Tagovailoa completed eight of his 13 passes for no TD or interception, though he did rush for a score as fellow Dolphins quarterback Jacoby Brissett was 11-of-23 passing for 156 yards.

Lamar Jackson revelled in another NFL record after leading the Baltimore Ravens to a 34-31 overtime win against the Minnesota Vikings.

Jackson posted his 12th career 100-yard rushing game (including playoffs) – a record for quarterbacks in the NFL – on Sunday.

The former MVP moved past four-time Pro Bowler Michael Vick, who achieved the feat in 11 games across his 13-year career.

Jackson, though, matched Vick in the regular season with his 10th 100-yard rushing game.

"Of course, I respect [Vick's] game. That's cool," Jackson said after rushing for 120 yards on 21 carries at home to the Vikings.

"I don't know what to say. That's pretty cool, though."

Jackson completed 27 of 41 passes for 266 yards, three touchdowns and two interceptions in Baltimore.

"We just had to do what we had to do to get the victory," Jackson said. "We just ran for a lot today. That's just what it was."

Jackson also registered his 22nd career 75-yard rushing game, surpassing Vick, while he tied Cam Newton for the most games with at least 250 passing yards and 100 rushing yards (three) in league history.

With his ninth career performance with at least 200 passing yards and 75 rushing yards, Jackson tied Russell Wilson for the most in NFL history, while his 15th consecutive game with a touchdown pass matched a franchise record he set in 2019-20.

"There are no long-term sustainability observations. That's not even relevant," Ravens head coach John Harbaugh when asked whether Jackson's running game was sustainable.

"Would you rather not run 21 times and lose the game? It's crazy to even suggest that."

Baker Mayfield threw a 60-yard touchdown to Donovan Peoples-Jones as the Cleveland Browns won without Odell Beckham Jr in Week 9, although Joe Burrow contributed to the Cincinnati Bengals' 41-16 defeat.

The Browns made the short trip to Cincinnati with Peoples-Jones back from a groin injury and in the lineup after fellow receiver Beckham was released at the end of a week that began with his father criticising quarterback Mayfield.

Beckham had underwhelmed this year since his return to fitness and his absence certainly was not felt on Sunday as Cleveland moved to 5-4 in a big AFC North matchup.

Before Mayfield came to the fore, though, Burrow endured a miserable start. Moments after a penalty reprieve when he was sacked on third and goal, the Bengals QB threw straight to Browns cornerback Denzel Ward on the goal line, covering Ja'Marr Chase and racing away for a 99-yard defensive TD.

Joe Mixon replied with the first of his two rushing scores, but Nick Chubb battled through contact to finish Cleveland's first drive with a TD, which Peoples-Jones added to as he caught Mayfield's first target to a wideout.

Long scores were the name of the day for the Browns, as Chubb's second saw him go 70 yards to score in the third quarter.

Burrow, who had scored three TDs in each of his previous three games, tying a Bengals record, was then picked off again throwing to Chase – this time by John Johnson III. Chase had earlier fumbled for a turnover of his own on a miserable day for two of Cincinnati's offensive stars.

Mayfield finished with 218 yards, two touchdowns and no interceptions on 14-of-21 passing. His second TD pass to David Njoku was set up by another throw to Peoples-Jones, who had 86 yards on just two catches.

Big upsets for Boys and Bills

The Dallas Cowboys had not lost since Week 1 but have a miserable record against the Denver Broncos, who had won the teams' past six meetings – their best ever run against a single opponent and the Cowboys' worst such streak. And six became seven as the Broncos won 30-16 in Dallas, holding their hosts scoreless until the fourth quarter despite Dak Prescott's return.

The Buffalo Bills also suffered a shock defeat as they went down 9-6 to the Jacksonville Jaguars in a game of zero touchdowns. Jaguars defensive end Josh Allen picked, sacked and recovered a fumble from his namesake, Bills QB Josh Allen.

However, the Baltimore Ravens survived a scare, as Lamar Jackson led them back from 17-3 down to make overtime, where Justin Tucker clinched a 34-31 win. Jackson is now 12-0 as a starter against NFC opponents.

Darnold spooked again

Sam Darnold said he was "seeing ghosts" when he threw four interceptions for the New York Jets against the New England Patriots in 2019, and Bill Belichick's defense has continued to spook the quarterback. He had three picks with the Carolina Panthers on Sunday and now has nine in just four career starts against New England, all four of which the Pats have won.

New England are hot on the heels of the Bills now, while AFC East rivals the Miami Dolphins snapped their seven-game losing run against the Houston Texans despite Tua Tagovailoa sitting out with a finger issue.

Baltimore Ravens linebacker Malik Harrison suffered a "non-life-threatening" injury when he was struck by a stray bullet on Sunday.

The Ravens revealed the bullet struck the 23-year-old's left calf as he was attending a gathering in Cleveland, with Baltimore on a bye in Week 8.

Harrison received medical care at a local hospital but is due to return to Baltimore on Monday.

Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said: "I don't think it's severe at all. They're in the process of getting it checked out with the doctors.

"I haven't heard back on that report yet. It was in the lower leg, I think. I'm optimistic that it's gonna be okay. I feel bad for the situation.

"[I am] Happy that he's okay. Very grateful that he's okay and not hurt worse. I mean, anything can happen, and just a tough situation."

Harrison, picked in the third round of the 2020 NFL Draft, has started five games this season, making 22 tackles.

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