Posted by Josh Katzowitz
With Browns rookie QB Colt McCoy set to make his NFL debut today, he’s going to need some major help. Consider: the Steelers have the fourth-ranked defense in the league, and they’ll have an emotional reunion with QB Ben Roethlisberger.
Consider: the Steelers are coming off a bye week and should be completely rested, while the Browns are coming off a disappointing home loss to Atlanta in which Cleveland had a chance to win.
Consider: Heinz Field probably will be a tad rough on McCoy.
Browns RB Peyton Hillis will try to help ease McCoy’s transition. Although Hillis, with a sore thigh, is listed as questionable on the weekly injury report, he said he plans on playing.
"I'll be very surprised if I'm not 100 percent," Hillis told the Cleveland Plain Dealer. "I feel great right now and with wrapping it up and keeping it warm, it should be fine."
Hillis reaggravated his injury last week against the Falcons, and he didn’t practice this week until Friday. But with a big rivalry game against the Steelers on the horizon, he doesn’t plan to stay on the sidelines. And, just because the Steelers have the No. 1 run defense in the NFL, that doesn’t intimidate Hollis.
From the Plain Dealer:
And they'll be doing it against the best rush defense in the NFL, one that's putting up some daunting statistics. The Steelers are surrendering a league-low 62.3 yards per game and no back has rushed for more than 42 yards against them this season. That was Atlanta's Michael Turner, who averaged 2.2 yards on his 19 attempts.
The Steelers held Tennessee's Chris Johnson to 34 yards on 16 carries, snapping his 12-game streak of rushing for more than 100 yards. What's more, the Steelers have allowed only one 100-yard rusher in the past 38 games.
"There's no doubt they're a good defense," said Hillis. "But we're not looking at (all the stats). They're human just like we are. They put their pants on one leg at a time and we've just got to approach it like that."
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