The Baltimore Ravens took advantage of a Pittsburgh offense lacking the potency of Ben Roethlisberger to grind out a 13-10 win over the Steelers, tightening their grip on the AFC North division.
The Ravens did not enjoy a spectacularly offensive night but with quarterback Roethlisberger nursing a sprained shoulder and injured ribs, they did not require one in a critical road victory that put them two games ahead of Pittsburgh (6-4).
Jacoby Jones lifted the Ravens (8-2) with a 63-yard punt return for a touchdown, giving the team a 10-7 lead just before halftime, and the defence did the rest during a typically gritty battle between the divisional foes.
Roethlisberger's replacement Byron Leftwich was solid in his first start since 2009 but did not impact the game enough as he finished with 201 yards passing and one interception.
Leftwich enjoyed a promising start when he scrambled for a 31-yard touchdown on the game's opening drive but he seemed to be struggling with a shoulder ailment and never looked comfortable.
After Baltimore grabbed their three-point lead by halftime, the teams traded field goals in the third quarter and Pittsburgh's final chance to tie game in the fourth faded with a series of Leftwich incompletions.