10 things to watch for at Cincinnati

What to keep an eye on in the AFC Wild Card Game against the Bengals:


Here is a look at the statistical leaders for the both the Steelers and Bengals heading into their AFC Wild Card game at Paul Brown Stadium.

RED-ZONE SHOWDOWN:** The Bengals' offense finished fifth in red zone efficiency (scoring touchdowns 65.5 percent of the time) and the Steelers were No. 6 in red zone defense (allowing TDs 49.1 percent of the time). The Steelers also led the NFL in opponents' trips inside the 20-yard line that resulted in zero points (14) and came up with seven red zone takeaways (tied for No. 1 in the NFL), including a league-leading six red zone interceptions (two against Bengals QB Andy Dalton). The Steelers were 10th in red zone offense (60.7) and the Bengals were fifth in red zone defense (47.4).

KEEP TRACK OF THE BACKS: The Bengals' 20-17 overtime loss on Dec. 28 at Denver snapped a streak of 22 consecutive victories when Cincinnati had at least 30 rushing attempts (33). The Bengals were 8-1 in such instances this season and are 81-15 all-time under head coach Marvin Lewis (.844). Cincinnati is 37-2 under Lewis (.949) when one running back has at least 25 carries (0-0 this season) and 41-7-1 under Lewis (.846) when a back rushes for 100 or more yards (1-0 this season).

TOP 5 CONFRONTATION: The Steelers finished tied for fourth in the NFL in scoring offense (26.4 points per game). The Bengals were No. 2 in scoring defense (17.4).

FIND REGGIE, AVOID REGGIE: Bengals FS Reggie Nelson had three of his NFL-leading eight interceptions (tied with KC CB Marcus Peters) at Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger's expense. Nelson had two INTs in Cincinnati's 16-10 victory over the Steelers on Nov. 1 in Pittsburgh and another in the Steelers' 33-20 win on Nov. 15 at Paul Brown Stadium.


BEN TO THE END:** Roethlisberger has authored three fourth quarter/overtime game-winning drives among his 10 career playoff victories (10-5, .667), including one that beat the Arizona Cardinals, 27-23, in Super Bowl XLIII.

BEN TO THE END, PART II: The Steelers led the NFL with 92 points inside the two-minute mark of a half this season (65 at the end of a first half, 27 at the conclusion of a second half).

IT MAY COME TO PASS: The Steelers and Bengals were two of the toughest teams to rush for first downs against in 2015. The Steelers finished tied for second in allowing 71 runs that moved the chains. The Bengals finished tied for fourth in that category at 74.

THE LONGEST YARDS: The Steelers and Bengals were also two of the NFL's stingiest teams in goal-to-go situations. The Bengals were No. 2, allowing touchdowns 50 percent of the time (8-for-16). The Steelers were No. 4 at 53.3 percent (16-for-30).

TAKE IT AWAY: The Bengals finished third in the NFL with 21 interceptions and the Steelers tied for sixth with 17.

PLAY FOR FOUR QUARTERS: The Bengals have been outscored in third and fourth quarters by a combined 57-6 in their last four playoff games (all losses). Cincinnati trailed Houston at the half, 17-10, in 2011 and lost, 31-10. The Bengals trailed the Texans at the half, 9-7, in 2012 and lost, 19-13. Cincinnati was ahead at the break against San Diego, 10-7, in 2013 but lost, 27-10. And the Bengals trailed Indianapolis at the half, 13-10, in 2014 and lost, 26-10.

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