Win and division is theirs

The Steelers have the perfect scenario facing them this week when they head to Cleveland to take on the Browns.

While they have already secured a playoff spot, a win Sunday afternoon would wrap up the AFC North title and a first-round playoff bye without having to worry about what anyone else does.

"It's the perfect position you want to be in, having control of your own fate," said running back Mewelde Moore. "It's all about us doing what we have to do to get this win."

It won't be easy, though. The Browns 5-11 record isn't indicative of how they have played this season, with upset wins over the New England Patriots and New Orleans Saints under their belts.

"When you look at them on tape, their record might be different, but they are a sound team, a power team and get right after it," said Moore. "It's a tough matchup and something we have to be ready for."

The AFC North has come down to a two-team race in the final week of the season. If the Steelers win, they get the title. But if the Steelers would lose to the Browns and the Baltimore Ravens defeat the Cincinnati Bengals, the Ravens would win the title.

"It's a big week," said nose tackle Chris Hoke. "Last year we went up there and got beat. We have to make sure we prepare every single moment we have. It's going to be a tough, hard-fought game. We have to go there and take care of business. If we go there and do what we do and play Steelers football, everything will be fine."

The Steelers lost to the Browns 13-6 last year at Cleveland Browns Stadium and it still stings some of the Steelers players.

"It doesn't get any better than this," said defensive end Nick Eason. "This is a huge game. Last year we went down there and they beat us so we have a huge chip on our shoulder. We have to get ready to play.

"In this game anyone can beat you if you don't prepare well. Cleveland has a good team. We can't take them lightly. It's our goal to try and win out. We always said winning games in the season will put you in position to get in the playoffs. We let three or four slip away from us this year, but we worked hard to get where we are and we are just concentrating on winning."

In addition to the AFC North title, a win would give the Steelers a bye week and provide some much needed time off for the black and gold.

"It's important to rest up and get rejuvenated and fresh legs under you," said Moore. "It's big and something we need."

A bye would benefit some of the players that are bruised and battered, but would also leave a little more time for preparation as well.

"The bye is always good to have to let guys rest," said Eason. "It also lets us study our opponent and have more game-planning time. It's huge."

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