The Pittsburgh Steelers are set to make the short trip to FirstEnergy Stadium to take on the Cleveland Browns. Both the Browns and the Steelers are tied with the Baltimore Ravens for first place in the AFC North. If the Ravens lose to the Patriots in week three, the winner of the Browns and Steelers game will take first place. Both teams are coming into the game with a 1-1 record. Last week, Pittsburgh was defeated by the New England Patriots by a final score of 17-14. On the flip side the Browns were also taken down in week two. Cleveland played against the New York Jets and lost by a final score of 31-30. With this being a rivalry game between two divisional foes, expect for it to be a close one.
Pittsburgh Steelers Look to Take First Place In the Division Outright
The Pittsburgh Steelers come into week three hoping to take the first place spot in the AFC North outright. This would be a big shock to many as the Steelers were expected to be by far the worst team in the division. However, even without T.J. Watt playing last week, they have still been able to hold their ground in the standings.
On offense, the Steelers will need a big day from Najee Harris on the ground. With him being the focal point of the offense this season, it will be on Harris to get the offense going to open the game. If they can establish the run game, it may open up the passing game. Last week, the Jets had a great game through the air against the Browns.
On defense, Pittsburgh’s biggest focus will be stopping Cleveland’s rushing attack. Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt have been the main contributors offensively so far this season for the Browns. This likely will not change in week three. As a result of this, the Steelers will have to find a way to put together a good rush defense without Watt on the field.
Cleveland Browns Hope to Bounce Back After Week 2 Collapse
Cleveland comes into the week looking to bounceback after blowing their week two game against the New York Jets. The Browns held a 13 point lead with less than three minutes left in the game, and managed to throw the game away. This was a game that the Browns needed to win if they wanted to still be in playoff contention once Deshaun Watson returned to play. As a result of the loss last week, this game against the Steelers becomes a must win for the Browns.
On offense, the will need to have another big day from the running back duo of Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. The passing game has struggled without Watson under center, and the Steelers’ secondary likely will not give up easy yards through the air.
Defensively, Cleveland needs to take a big step up. They were dominated through the air by a past his prime Joe Flacco. Coming into the year, many thought the Browns had an elite secondary, however, they have not gotten off to a good start this season. Cleveland may begin to look desperate this game and time will tell if that ends up working out in their favor.