Print and Go Back ESPN.com: AFC North [Print without images]

Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Scouts Inc. on Big Ben vs. Joe Cool

By James Walker
ESPN.com

Posted by ESPN.com's James Walker

In this week's visit to the film room, we check in with Scouts Inc. to examine the intriguing quarterback matchup between Joe Flacco of the Baltimore Ravens and Ben Roethlisberger of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Roethlisberger Flacco

Flacco, a rookie, is 0-2 against the Steelers this season. But he led his team to Sunday's AFC Championship Game and became the first quarterback to win two road playoff games in his first season. Roethlisberger has already won a Super Bowl and is a proven winner playing in his third AFC title game in five years.

Here is comprehensive film analysis from Scouts Inc.'s Keith Kidd:

To me, two of the key elements in the postseason revolve around the "key" production and game management at the quarterback position. Simply put, don't force the issues that result in game-changing mistakes, especially against these two great defenses that thrive on different looks, disguises and pressure schemes. Both quarterbacks are very similar in that they are tall, smart, athletic, mobile and have the arm strength to make all throws. However, Flacco has a stronger running game and better offensive line that allows him to manage the game while making the proper decisions. Roethlisberger is more dangerous in the pocket at keeping plays alive and has a stronger supporting cast out on the perimeter in the passing game. And don't discount his experience in the playoffs. Both teams are going to have a very difficult time committing to the run, and the team that makes the most explosive plays in the passing game, while converting third-down situations, will win on Sunday. Advantage: Roethlisberger.