CLEVELAND (6-3)**: Much of what has been happening with the Browns this season hasn't happened in Cleveland in a long time, but Coach Mike Pettine is looking ahead, not behind.
"I don't get into looking back at that now," Pettine maintained after the Browns' 24-3 victory in Cincinnati last week. "We know the history, but we can't let that affect us one way or the other. To me, we are playing well and the players have bought into what we are selling as a staff, and it shows. This is a tight team and they care about each other and it shows on the field. It is a tight group."
QB Brian Hoyer is most impressed with the Browns' chemistry and togetherness.
"The greatest thing about our team is we play as a team," he said. "In the NFL, that's where you have a lot of guys who are out for themselves. This team plays for each other. As long as we do that, we can do special things."
CINCINNATI (5-3-1): The Bengals weren't interested in sugarcoating or over-reacting to QB Andy Dalton's tough night against the Browns.
Dalton completed 10 passes, threw for 86 yards, was intercepted three times, and compiled a passer rating of 2.0.
"He had a bad day," Coach Marvin Lewis said. "He'll come out of this and be fine. We will get him out of this. But it was not a good night."
Not for Dalton and not for the Bengals.
"It all starts with me," Dalton said. "It all goes through the quarterback. I've got to play better and put our team in a position to win. The good thing is it only counts as one (loss). We have to move on from it and be ready to go."
WR A.J. Green had a tough time expressing all that had gone wrong in the Browns game.
"This one has me speechless," he said.
RB Jeremy Hill found the words to characterize Cincinnati's performance.
"It's pathetic," he said. "We're embarrassed."
BALTIMORE (6-4)**: After being carved up by Ben Roethlisberger and the Steelers, 43-23, on Nov. 2, the Ravens made some changes.
CB Chykie Brown and CB Dominique Franks were cut, rookie CB Tramain Jacobs was promoted from the practice squad, and CB Danny Gorrer was signed as a free agent. Franks had started against the Steelers and Brown had played in sub-packages.
S Anthony Levine started at cornerback in last Sunday's 21-7 victory over Tennessee, along with veteran Lardarius Webb.
Facing rookie QB Zack Mettenberger rather than Roethlisberger, the Ravens cut down on the yards passing allowed, from 340 to 179, and the number of passing touchdowns allowed, from six to one.
Rookie S Terrence Brooks came off the bench after being inactive against the Steelers. S Jeromy Miles, Gorrer and S Will Hill also showed up on the defensive stat sheet in support of the two starting cornerbacks and starting safeties Matt Elam and Darian Stewart.
The Ravens didn't have CB Jimmy Smith for the Steelers game and found out they wouldn't have him for the rest of the season prior to the Tennessee game. Smith had surgery on his injured foot and was placed on injured reserve … Baltimore had more sacks (five) than first downs allowed after the first quarter against Tennessee.