Ravens' Suggs disrupts Steelers' rhythm

BALTIMORE - In the absence of injured Pro Bowl outside linebacker Peter Boulware, Terrell Suggs is emerging as one of the Baltimore Ravens' most disruptive defenders. <br><br> The second-year outside linebacker sacked Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Tommy Maddox once, frustrating Maddox enough to flail and curse at last year's NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year.

During the Ravens' 30-13 victory Sunday, Suggs also returned a Maddox fumble forced by cornerback Gary Baxter 24 yards to the Steelers' 1 to set up a 1-yard Jamal Lewis touchdown.

"Suggs has Pro Bowl-type ability," said safety Ed Reed, one of four Ravens defenders to make the Pro Bowl last season. "He should have made the Pro Bowl last year."

Suggs generated 12 sacks last season to lead Baltimore and all rookies. He said he's eager to join the Ravens' list of Pro Bowl defenders that includes linebackers Ray Lewis and Adalius Thomas (special teams), cornerback Chris McAlister and Reed.

With Boulware out for the first six weeks of the season with a knee injury that has him on the physically unable to perform list, Suggs is being counted on to provide most of the pass rush.

"That's a lot of pressure on me with Pete out," said Suggs, who was caught by Hines Ward on his fumble return. "I'm doing everything I can to get to the quarterback."

Meanwhile, Thomas knocked down three Maddox passes and intercepted rookie quarterback Ben Roethlisberger in the second half.

It was another strong game by the outside linebackers, especially Suggs.

"I'm not surprised," Reed said. "Suggs is a bright young man with a bright future."

Aaron Wilson writes for the Carroll County Times.

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