The Steelers and Browns will meet on Sunday afternoon at Cleveland Browns Stadium in a rematch of the Week 2 game the Steelers came out on top of, 26-22.
The two teams share identical 6-3 records, but the Steelers are ahead of the Browns in the AFC North based on head-to-head record and division record. The Steelers are 2-0 in the AFC North, while the Browns are 2-2.
"Got the 6-3 Steelers coming to town, 6-3 Browns down there on the lake," said Browns Coach Kevin Stefanski. "We're very excited about that and that's where our focus is. We're focusing on going 1-0 this week any which way we can. And that's the exciting part about life in the NFL."
While there has been some talk about the Steelers coming out of Cleveland this week, the majority of the locker room conversation has been centered around their rookie quarterback, Dorian Thompson-Robinson, who will start on Sunday after starter Deshaun Watson was placed on the Reserve/Injured List.
Head Coach Kevin Stefanski on Sunday's matchup:
"That Steelers team is coming in here, as we know, really well-coached, good players. They're a tough matchup. Their defense, that front is stout. Good players in the back end, including Joey Porter Jr. who is playing more and more and playing at a high level for them.
"Offensively, create all sorts of issues with their pre-snap movement. Some new players on that side of the ball as well, think they'll get their tight end back.
"A huge challenge and special teams. I think our special teams made some plays to help us win last week and that's going to definitely be the case again this week."
Linebacker Anthony Walker Jr. on how the Steelers have changed since Week 2 and Jaylen Warren's impact:
"Yeah, offense getting healthy, a lot of guys coming back for them. Jaylen Warren picking up. The run game is really picking up. I think they had over 200 yards last week, so we understand what type of game this is going to be. Like I said, the quarterback has gotten better, they've gotten healthier, so the offense overall has gotten better."
Defensive coordinator Jim Schwartz on quarterback Kenny Pickett's play in the fourth quarter:
"I don't know if I've really studied him that way. We just look at the whole body of work. But you'd always respect that about a player. When the game is on the line, it's time to go make plays. It's our job to go make plays in the fourth quarter, too. So that would be a great matchup on Sunday."
Stefanski on why he is confident Dorian Thompson-Robinson is the guy to lead the Browns against the Steelers:
"I think this week, having a full week of preparation, knowing that he's going to be the starter, I think is important. Every backup will tell you and it's the truth. They have to be ready to go after the first play. After the second play, if the starter needs a shoelace, you have to be ready to go. So, he's prepared himself all season, just felt like this was the right thing for the team."
Guard Joel Bitonio on having Thompson-Robinson starting and what the offense has to do:
"Guys are very locked in now. Everyone knows they have to pick up their slack a little more now. We understand we have a job to do still. We know who is going to be out there. Our goal is to do our part and do it to the best of our ability."
Schwartz on the Steelers being 6-0 in one score games:
"Well, if you just look at their offensive stats, it's not eye-popping, but you look at their win total. I think I've been on the record of saying how we're doing is always 5-3, 6-3. That's how we do. And I think Pittsburgh lives that a little bit. The stat that pops out the most about them is their turnovers. They don't turn the ball over. Now, we got two in the first game, but their defense got three, four, whatever it was, and they're one of the best teams in the NFL at turnover margin. And we all know what an indicator for winning games is. And that's our big challenge, is taking the ball away from those guys because they do a good job of taking care of the ball, and that puts them in the win column more often than not."
Walker Jr. on what he has seen on film from the Steelers:
"Running the football well and stopping the run and playing good defense and then just find a way, whatever it takes to get the win. That's what they do and that's what we have to do."
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