MIKE PRESTON’S KEY MATCHUPS
Steelers WR Antonio Brown vs Ravens CBs Brandon Carr, Jimmy Smith and Marlon Humphrey: Brown, a gamechanger with excellent hands and speed, is Pittsburgh’s top receiver. The Ravens cornerbacks have played well this season and are very physical. Smith has stayed healthy. But the Steelers will challenge them deep a couple of times with Brown, especially if he gets isolated one on one with Humphrey, a rookie and the team’s top draft pick out of Alabama. Steelers RB Le’Veon Bell vs Ravens LBs C.J. Mosley, Tyus Bowser and Matthew Judon: Pittsburgh uses Bell to attack defense. He is a deliberate, disciplined runner who has gained 180 yards on 52 carries. He has great vision and can make jump cuts anywhere along the line of scrimmage. Look for Pittsburgh to try to get one-on-one matchups with the linebackers because Jacksonville had so much success doing so last week. Mosley can hold his own, but Judon and Bowser are liabilities in coverage. Steelers defensive line vs. Ravens offensive line: Pittsburgh has the No. 22-ranked rush defense in the NFL, allowing 123.3 yards a game. Look for the Ravens to try to stay with the run. A key matchup will be in the middle. where Ravens center Ryan Jensen goes against nose tackle Javon Hargrave. Left defensive end Cameron Heyward has played some decent games against the Ravens. Ravens right tackle Austin Howard needs to rebound with a strong game after a subpar effort last week.
Antonio Brown has 26 catches for 354 yards and one touchdown this season.