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Playoff Matchups: Bailey vs. Steelers WRs

Posted on: January 5, 2012 5:07 pm
Edited on: January 5, 2012 5:07 pm

Broncos corner Champ Bailey vs. Steelers receivers Mike Wallace and Antonio Brown -- Wallace and Brown can fly. Both have big-play ability. But Bailey is one of the best man-cover players in the NFL. Who does he take? I would imagine he would be on Wallace, but he might also spend some time on Brown. This is a battle between a smart veteran corner and two young speedy receivers.

Saints guards Carl Nicks and Jahri Evans vs. Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh  -- Evans has already come out and said Suh does some dirty things on the field. That should stoke this fire a bit. Green Bay's Josh Sitton dominated Suh last week and these two guards are in that class. Suh didn't play in the first meeting when he served a suspension, so this should be fun. To get pressure on Drew Brees, it has to come up the middle since Brees he gets the ball out so fast. That means Suh.

Giants left tackle David Diehl vs. Falcons defensive end John Abraham -- Diehl has struggled at times this season, while Abraham has come on lately. He was bothered by a groin injury earlier this season, but he's healthy now. And it's showing up. The Falcons have moved Abraham around some, so he will line up opposite Kareem McKenzie some, but I imagine he will be over Diehl a bunch.

Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow vs. Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau -- The Steelers coordinator is one of the best ever. He has a way of devising schemes to stop different offenses. I expect him to come up with a good one to force Tebow to throw the football. The Steelers will likely play a lot of man coverage and drop Troy Polamalu down in the box. That will force Tebow to throw it. Can he? 

Falcons right tackle Tyson Clabo vs. Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul -- Clabo is a classic self-made player, a mauler who pushes the envelope when it comes to dirty play. Pierre-Paul is an athletic freak who was my pick as the Defensive Player of the Year. Does the mauler win? Or does the special athlete win? This will be fun to watch.

Saints defensive end Will Smith vs. Lions left tackle Jeff Backus -- Smith is the Saints best pass rusher, while Backus is a veteran tackle who has to protect Matt Stafford's backside. Smith isn't as explosive as he once was, but he can still get after the passer. Backus has had trouble with good ends at times this season.

Lions receiver Calvin Johnson vs. Saints corners Jabari Greer and Tracy Porter  -- How do you stop Johnson? You don't. You just try and contain him. Green and Porter are good cover players, but I would think the Saints will give them help over the top. The Saints limited him to six catches and 69 yards in the first meeting. Earlier this season, Green Bay's Tramon Williams did a good job on Johnson but he got the better of the Packers last week. This is big challenge for the Saints corners. Johnson has been on fire.

Steelers outside linebacker James Harrison vs. Broncos left tackle Ryan Clady -- Clady is a good left tackle who has improved as the season moved along, looking more like the 2009 Clady. Harrison is back after missing time with the broken orbital bone and remains a top-level pass rusher. He seems to really excel in the playoffs. Look for Harrison to set the edge to keep Tebow from getting outside the pocket.

Broncos center J.D. Walton vs. Steelers nose tackle Casey Hampton -- If the Broncos want to get their spread-option going, they have to handle Hampton. That means Walton has to get inside push to allow the guards to get out on the inside linebackers. Walton had a tough go of it last week against the Chiefs, which is why Denver didn't run it as well. He has to play better here.

Bengals receiver A.J. Green vs. Texans cornerback Johnathan Joseph -- Joseph gets a chance to face his former team for the second time this season. The first time, the Texans held Green to five catches for 59 yards as Joseph did a nice job on him.  I would imagine the Texans would put Joseph on Green a lot again in man coverage. Green has a size advantage, so that could play out in the Red Zone.


Since: Aug 15, 2006
Posted on: January 8, 2012 9:55 am

Playoff Matchups: Bailey vs. Steelers WRs

spot on analysis

Since: Jul 29, 2011
Posted on: January 7, 2012 4:10 pm

Playoff Matchups: Bailey vs. Steelers WRs

The Texans got nothing. They were running on empty weeks ago, now the engine will finally quit.

Since: Sep 15, 2006
Posted on: January 7, 2012 12:08 pm

Playoff Matchups: Bailey vs. Steelers WRs

there is no love for houston because of the Qb situation if schaub was healthy they would be talking possible Super Bowl for them but Kubiak has played way to conservatively with yates in there he should have used last few games that didnt effect there standing in playoff race to try get him throwing downfield and getting him ready to throw some in playoffs game against the Colts they showed no confidence in Yates at all to the point of running on 3rd and ten almost everytime so no one is showing them love bc they have no confidence in their own QB and neither backup they got is worth a lick Delhomme and Jeff Garcia together dont make one whole good Qb lol

Since: Sep 15, 2006
Posted on: January 7, 2012 11:48 am

Playoff Matchups: Bailey vs. Steelers WRs

You are kidding right even if charlie batch has to play at Qb this will be a no contest the Steelers are goin to eat Tim Tebow alive he is a joke at Qb hes not even a qb hes a RB he sucked at throwing ball in college he sucks at throwing ball in NFL and Dick Lebeau is one of the greatest DC if not the greatest ever the Steelers Defense will score more than the Broncos offense does today and ill take a gimpy Roethlisberger over Tim Tebow everyday of the year

Since: Nov 1, 2009
Posted on: January 7, 2012 9:57 am

Playoff Matchups: Bailey vs. Steelers WRs

While it's hard to look at Denver and imagine them beating a 12 win team it's also hard to look at a banged up Pittsburgh and imagine them winning 12 in their current state.  That game will be closer than expected and don't be surprised if Denver wins 13-10.

Since: Mar 6, 2011
Posted on: January 7, 2012 6:54 am

Playoff Matchups: Bailey vs. Steelers WRs

Giants should eat up that falcon O-line......but as mediocre as pittsburgh's defense has looked this year....old, tried, the LeBeau factor is big. Tebow is a liability at this point, not a plus. Denver's defense however has been great. Von Miller is an elite player.....he can make it tough for Ben all day. Might be a close game. But i cant see Pitt losing. Texans will win this one. Great defense, great game plans all year. Bengals have a tough run defense, but I think Houston can win with Yates, a nice rookie....and houston is at home. The most interesting game is NO vs Detroit. I have a hunch Suh is going to have a huge game. The Lions when they play well, are very very good. Saints defense sucks. Lions might pull of an upset here.

Since: Apr 15, 2008
Posted on: January 6, 2012 9:40 pm

Playoff Matchups: Bailey vs. Steelers WRs

 Pittsburgh coming to Denver, Ben fighting inuries, thin air & travel to mile high, loud crowd, Denver defense, & luck of the Tebow. Pittsburgh hit their peak a couple of years ago. Denver not playing great, but if there was a time to break out of a slump this is it. I just don't see Pittsburgh getting out of Denver w/ a victory. Tebow, or no Tebow.

Since: Jan 21, 2009
Posted on: January 6, 2012 4:16 pm

Playoff Matchups: Bailey vs. Steelers WRs

They have one Champ Bailey. Pittsburgh has Wallace..and Sanders...and Brown.....and Cotchery...and Ward. The Steelers won't play Batch though, so getting the ball to the wideouts is going to basically be up to Redman. Yeah Redman. He runs north/south and usually gains positive yardage. So, if Ben can convert 2nd and short and 3rd and shorts that are set up by 'Red Zone' by hitting  the bubble screens and quick slants, Pittsburgh should be fine.

I agree on most fronts here, however in the case of Hines Ward, and at this point of his career, Ryan McBean could blanket him in man coverage.

Since: Jan 21, 2009
Posted on: January 6, 2012 4:13 pm

Playoff Matchups: Bailey vs. Steelers WRs

I'm not crapping on Prisco for the obvious fluff piece, but seriously folks, if you need an article to tell you what to watch during play-off football you are just in it for the dip, beer and commercials...

Since: Oct 9, 2008
Posted on: January 6, 2012 12:35 pm

Playoff Matchups: Bailey vs. Steelers WRs

No love for the Texans still? How do all of you CBS writers enjoy your crow? Pathetic......
What love can they show for a team with ZERO playoff experience?
You are a favorite in a playoff game things could be worse... 

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or