In a few short hours, the Pittsburgh Steelers will look to move one step closer to .500 when they host the Cleveland Browns at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh. The game will be televised by the NFL Network, so if you don't receive the channel, round up some friends and find a place to enjoy some libations, and hopefully a Steelers victory.
The Browns and Steelers met just two weeks ago in Cleveland, and it took some 4th quarter heroics from Ben Roethlisberger to sneak by the Browns 24-20. The good news is we're coming off a victory and playing at home. That bad news is we're still banged up on both sides of the ball.
Troy Polamalu and Hines Ward are both out, but the injury bug does not stop there. Cedrick Wilson (ankle) and Ryan Clark (groin) have also been scratched from tonight's game. Nate Washington and Santonio Holmes will be our starting WRs tonight...could be problematic. I expect Willie Parker to get the ball 25 times tonight. He's been better at home than on the road, and we really don't have the parts necessary to scare anybody this week in our passing game. I do hope we look for Heath Miller more frequently tonight, especially if we are able to establish the running game early.
I'm excited to see rookie Anthony Smith start in Clark's absence. Smith still has a lot to learn in terms of where to be on the field, but he's made plays when given the opportunity to play, and is certainly capable of making a game-changing play.
The Browns will be starting Derek Anderson, a 2nd year man out of Oregon State. Anderson took over for Charlie Frye last weekend after Frye hurt his wrist against the Kansas City Chiefs. Anderson filled in admirably, leading the Browns to a dramatic come-from-behind 31-28 victory.
I expect the Steelers to confuse and harass Anderson tonight, much like they were able to do against the inexperienced Gradkowski last week. Anderson proved last week that he's not easily flustered, but it won't be as easy in the hostile confines of Heinz Field.
I'm expecting an ugly, low-scoring affair, and I look for the Steelers to hang on 17-13.
If you can't make it out to catch the game, find me on this thread to talk about the game. I'll be here cheering on our Super Bowl Champion Pittsburgh Steelers!
Have fun everybody...