NEW YORK (AP) Comments on the Pittsburgh Steelers by the AP Pro32 panel (ranking in parentheses):
PITTSBURGH STEELERS (11)
Chris Berman (ESPN, 7) - As usual, when back is to the wall is when Steelers are at their best.
Clifton Brown (Sporting News, 10) - Defense and Charlie Batch and can still deliver when Steelers need it.
Cris Collinsworth (NBC Sports, 7)
Rich Gannon (CBS Sports/SiriusXM NFL Radio, 7) - Huge win without Big Ben on the road against the Ravens. Steelers have the better team right now.
Bob Glauber (Newsday, 14) - A week after stinking it up in Cleveland, Charlie Batch plays the hero in Baltimore and keeps the Stillers in the thick of the playoff race. Still need Ben Roethlisberger to make a run, though.
Rick Gosselin (Dallas Morning News, 12) - The Steelers led the NFL in defense in back-to-back seasons in 2007-08. Pittsburgh ranks No. 1 this season and is attempting to go back-to-back again in 2011-12.
Clark Judge (CBSSports.com, 12) - Tackle Max Starks is right: December is when the Steelers stretch their legs. It's also the month they get Ben Roethlisberger back.
Ira Kaufman (Tampa Tribune, 13) - They likely salvaged their season in an unlikely venue - Baltimore.
Pat Kirwan (SiriusXM NFL Radio/CBSSports.com, 11) - Never underestimate the will of a championship team. When Ben gets back this team is moving up. Getting hot at the right time.
John Lynch (Fox Sports, 7) - I moved them to the No. 7 spot with the anticipation of Big Ben coming back. With he and Polamalu back, this team is battle tested in meaningful games and tough to beat.
Alex Marvez (Foxsports.com, 14) - A gritty 23-20 win in Baltimore ultimately could be remembered as the victory that propelled the Steelers into the playoffs.
Dan Pompei (Chicago Tribune, 14) - If they can beat the Ravens on the road with Charlie Batch, who can't they beat with Ben Roethlisberger?