The Steelers will host the Cleveland Browns at Heinz Field in the AFC Wild Card Round on Sunday, January 10. Kickoff for the game is set for 8:15 pm. and will be broadcast on NBC (WPXI-TV in Pittsburgh).
The Steelers split the series with the Browns this season, defeating them, 38-7, in Week 6 at Heinz Field, and dropping the season finale, 24-22, in Week 17, with several Steelers starters sitting out, including quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.
The Steelers and Browns have played twice in the postseason, the Steelers winning both meetings. In 1995 the Steelers defeated the Browns, 29-9, in the AFC Divisional Round, and in 2002 they beat the Browns, 36-33, in the AFC Wild Card Round.
Home sweet home: Heinz Field has been a popular place for postseason action, with the Steelers hosting 13 playoff games at their home since it opened in 2001.
The Steelers have an 8-5 record at Heinz Field in the postseason, and there have been some memorable moments.
Some favorite moments include:
Steelers 27, Baltimore 10 – AFC Divisional Playoff – Jan 20, 2002
A dominating defense held the Ravens to 22 yards rushing, and 150 yards overall. Amos Zereoue, who was a surprise starter when Jerome Bettis had an adverse reaction to pain medication pregame, scored two touchdowns in the win.
Steelers 36, Cleveland 33 – AFC Wild Card Game – Jan. 5, 2003
The Steelers won in thrilling fashion, wiping out a 13-point fourth quarter deficit. The Steelers scored two touchdowns in the final 3:06, including a three-yard run by Chris Fuamatu-Ma'afala with 54 seconds to play.
Steelers 20, New York Jets 17 – AFC Divisional Playoff – Jan. 5, 2005
The Jets missed two late field goals, including one at the end of regulation, to send the game into overtime. The Steelers would connect on their attempt when Jeff Reed hit a 33-yard field goal for the overtime win.
Steelers 35, San Diego 24 – AFC Divisional Playoff – Jan. 11, 2009
A total team effort gave the Steelers the edge over the Chargers, including a strong performance by the defense, who sacked Philip Rivers four times and Larry Foote also intercepted Rivers.
Steelers 23, Baltimore 14 – AFC Championship Game – Jan. 18, 2009
The defining play in this game is simple. With the Steelers holding onto a 16-14 lead, Troy Polamalu intercepted Joe Flacco and returned it 40 yards for a touchdown that sealed a win and a trip back to the Super Bowl.
Steelers 31, Baltimore 24 – AFC Divisional Playoff – Jan. 15, 2011
With their backs against the wall and down by 14 at the half, the Steelers rallied in the second half for the win over their AFC North rivals. The Steelers scored 24 second half points and the defense forced turnovers on three consecutive Ravens' possessions.
Steelers 24, New York Jets 19 – AFC Championship Game – Jan. 23, 2011
William Gay had one of the day's most exciting plays when he recovered a fumble and returned it 19 yards for a touchdown to put the Steelers up 24-0. The Jets fought back, but it was too little, too late, and the Steelers were Super Bowl bound.
Virtual Sideline Experience: Enter to win a Virtual Sideline Experience for the Steelers Wild Card Playoff Game through SNU. Experience the excitement of the pregame from the sideline virtually. To enter, sign up here: Steelers Virtual Sideline.
Been there before: The Steelers go into the playoffs with a roster that has 26 players with postseason experience. Ben Roethlisberger leads the way having played in 21 postseason games. There are four players who have played in seven post season games, including David DeCastro, Maurkice Pouncey, Stephon Tuitt and Vince Williams. Jordan Berry, Chris Boswell, Alejandro Villanueva and Steven Nelson (Kansas City) have played in six games, and Cameron Heyward has played in five games. Sean Davis, Eric Ebron (Detroit), Jayrone Elliot (Green Bay), Vance McDonald (Steelers and three with the San Francisco) and Cassius Marsh (Seattle) have played in four games. Jordan Dangerfield and Chris Wormley (Baltimore) have played in three post season games and Avery Williamson (Tennessee) and Derek Watt (Los Angeles Chargers) have played in two.
There are seven players who have played in one postseason game, including Tyson Alualu, Kameron Canaday, Joe Haden, Mike Hilton, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Cameron Sutton and T.J. Watt.
New to you: There are a total of 27 players who have never played in the a postseason game on the Steelers roster, including the following: LB Olasunkanmi Adeniyi, LB Marcus Allen, S Antoine Brooks Jr., DL Isaiah Buggs, WR Chase Claypool, RB James Conner, DL Carlos Davis, QB Joshua Dobbs, OL Kevin Dotson, S Terrell Edmunds, S Minkah Fitzpatrick, C J.C. Hassenauer, T Jerald Hawkins, LB Alex Highsmith, OL Danny Isidora, WR Diontae Johnson, CB Justin Layne, WR Ray-Ray McCloud, RB Anthony McFarland Jr., DL Henry Mondeaux, OL Chukwuma Okorafor, CB James Pierre, QB Mason Rudolph, RB Jaylen Samuels, LB Tegray Scales, RB Benny Snell Jr., WR James Washington.
Cheering on the black and gold: What would the playoffs be in Pittsburgh without a pep rally? While the setting might look a little different this year, the excitement will be the same when fans take part in the Steelers Virtual Pep Rally.
The pep rally, which will be hosted by KDKA-TVs Bob Pompeani, will be filled with Terrible Towels waving and plenty of excitement to get everyone ready for the Steelers Wild Card Round game.
The pep rally will take place on Saturday, Jan. 9 at 7 p.m. and streamed on Steelers.com, the Mobile App, Steelers Facebook, YouTube, Steelers Nation Unite Twitter and KDKA-TV in the Pittsburgh market.
You can get involved on social media as well, tweeting photos and using #HereWeGo.
Numbers don't lie: The Steelers have a strong history in the postseason, with their numbers being among the best since the 1970 NFL merger.
The Steelers are 36-24 all time in the postseason since the 1970 merger and have earned 30 playoff berths.
This year was the 24th time the Steelers clinched their division title, including 15 AFC Central Division championships and nine AFC North Division championships after the conference was realigned in 2002 to include the Steelers, Browns, Bengals and Baltimore Ravens.
This is also the seventh time the Steelers have won the AFC North under Coach Mike Tomlin, who has never had a losing season since he was hired in 2007.
Steelers Trivia: Steelers fans can test their knowledge during the playoffs through Steelers Trivia on the Steelers Mobile App. Fans can answer daily questions throughout the playoff by simply downloading the Steelers Mobile App.
Steelers Playoffs Experience: Steelers fans can get ready for the excitement of the playoffs by entering to win the Steelers Playoffs Experience, which will provide you everything you need to enjoy the Steelers in the 2020 playoffs. Enter once and be eligible for the Steelers Playoffs Experience package, which includes:
Large Screen TV
$250 VISA gift card
$250 Steelers Pro Shop gift card
Virtual Call with a Steelers Legend during the game
Steelers Pro Shop Homegating Package