View Full Version : Steelers on Browns: what rivalry?

09-13-2008, 04:13 PM
Steelers on Browns: what rivalry?
Nine-game winning streak places burden of proof on Cleveland Intelligencer Journal
Published: Sep 13, 2008
01:28 EST
OH, Cleveland

By MATT PAWLIKOWSKI, Sports Correspondent
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, shown here during the first quarter against the Ca...(more) 1 of 1Remember the old Drew Carey show? One of the theme songs was "Cleveland Rocks." It has also become a favorite at Cleveland stadium when the Browns take the field.

When it comes to playing the Pittsburgh Steelers, though, Cleveland rocked would be more appropriate. True, the game is one of football's greatest rivalries, as the two cities are just 120 miles apart, and there is no love lost for each other.

But Pittsburgh has won nine straight games, the longest current streak in the NFL against an opponent, and 15 of the last 16, not to mention the fact the Browns are 1-8 at home against Pittsburgh since 1999, and coach Romeo Crennel is 0-6 overall.

"They have to beat us," Steelers safety Troy Polamalu said. "That's the bottom line. Until they do, it's not much of a rivalry."

So much for the trash talk of the past, even though the Browns have been picked by most to win the AFC North.

"They were a 10-6 team, they won 10 games last year and they had some impressive free agent acquisitions in the off season," Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said. "You've got to acknowledge that. I think that one thing that permeates throughout this building is that we've got a great deal of respect for those guys over there, players and coaches, and we know what they're capable of. It's going to be a tall task to go in there on Sunday night and perform well enough to win."

Ben Roethlisberger, who has a 100-plus passing rating during the streak, and has played extremely well when back in his home state, agreed with his coach.

"It doesn't mean anything to us," Roethlisberger said of the streak and rivalry. "It's a new year, new team, and we're coming out trying to get this win. I think both teams know how important this win is, and this game, it's going to be a good one. It always is, every time we play each other, and I expect nothing different this time."

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The Browns, on the other hand, know the importance of this game, and what it means not only to them, but also to the community, since it is hosting its first nationally televised "NBC Sunday Night Football" contest.

"This is still a great rivalry and it goes way back, even before any of us were thinking about football," Browns center Hank Fraley said. "These cities hate each other. I know that because I went to school in Pittsburgh, and as players we know how much a win means to each city."

So what do the Browns need to do to beat the Steelers in a game Browns general manager Phil Savage has said is a must win for the team?

"I have mentioned (the losing streak), but I don't try to dwell on it," Crennel said. "I don't want them to get that mindset and be thinking about all that. I want them to be thinking about how we can win a game as opposed to how many we have lost. We are going to have to see if we can get off to a good start, and then see if we can finish a game."

For now, Steelers-Browns week is just another chapter in a 16-page book for the Steelers, this being Chapter Two.

"We're not worried about what anybody else says, we're only worried about ourselves here," Casey Hampton said. "They haven't beaten us, so it's just another game on the schedule for us until they beat us."

09-13-2008, 04:18 PM
"They have to beat us," Steelers safety Troy Polamalu said. "That's the bottom line. Until they do, it's not much of a rivalry."

Good to see this type of smack comming from Polamalu!! Very unlike him!!!



09-13-2008, 05:10 PM
I dont really like this type of stuff. This is what predicates a big day for the Browns.