The Steelers are one of only three NFL teams, San Francisco and Washington being the others, that haven’t played a divisional game yet this season, but that all changes this weekend with a key AFC North matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals.
“Since I have been here they have been our rivals, the Bengals, Browns and Ravens,” said linebacker Larry Foote. “We need to gain some ground. We need a win and they need a win also. It’s going to be a hard-hitting game.”
The Bengals are 3-3 overall and in second place with a 1-2 division record, but are coming off a loss to the Cleveland Browns. This week pits two teams that like Foote said need a win bad.
“It’s a division game. It’s always going to be tough no matter what the records are,” said tight end Heath Miller. “We are both teams in need of a win this weekend. We have to understand the hunger they are going to play with and we have to bring the same intensity because we need to take a step in the right direction.”
The Steelers have won nine of the last 10 games in Cincinnati, but know that they are going to have a tough battle at Paul Brown Stadium.
“It’s a tough environment,” said Miller. “We know our work is cut out for us every time we go to Cincinnati. We know we are going to have to bring energy, start the game fast because their crowd is going to be into it. It’s a big game for both of us.”
The intensity will definitely be at a fever pitch, especially with it being a nationally televised Sunday night contest, but that is what the players thrive on.
“I am excited about it,” said receiver Mike Wallace. “It’s a division game. You know they are going to come out and give us a great shot and want to play hard at the beginning. We have to come out with the same intensity as those guys.
“It’s one of the toughest divisions in football. It’s going to be physical and fun. It’s a Sunday night game. You can’t ask for anything more.”
Tags: Heath Miller, Larry Foote, Mike Wallace
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