Pittsburgh's fifth consecutive victory after a 1-2 start sent the Steelers into Sunday's AFC North showdown against Cincinnati at Heinz Field. The teams are tied at 6-2, and the Bengals own a 23-20 victory over the Steelers.
"It's going to be a war," said wide receiver Hines Ward.
Ward caught two touchdown passes in Denver as the Steelers dominated the Broncos 28-10, even though they played without three starters on defense.
"We got the Bengals at home," Ward said. "That's what we want."
The Super Bowl champions are in the middle of a three-game stretch against teams with some of the best records in the league. They gave the Vikings their first loss, the Broncos their second and have a chance to send the Bengals to their third and break the tie atop the division they have won the past two years.
"We're in position to go on a run. We just have to keep winning," defensive end Brett Keisel said after sacking Kyle Orton twice Monday night. "Obviously we have the biggest test we'll play all year next week."
While the Bengals have been down for most of two decades, the Steelers have been a thorn in their side when Cincinnati did have opportunities. Pittsburgh beat the Bengals in the opening round of the playoffs after the 2005 season at Cincinnati and then went on to win the Super Bowl. The Bengals would have made the playoffs again in 2006 except for a season-ending defeat in overtime to Pittsburgh.
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