Steelers playing best ball of season but can’t look past Chiefs

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The Steelers, 5-3, continued on a roll playing their best football of the season as they defeated the NFL champion New York Giants 24-20 to keep them one game behind the Baltimore Ravens, 6-2, in the AFC North.

Hopefully they will not look past the lowly 1-7 Kansas City Chiefs anticipating the head to head clash against the Baltimore Ravens Nov. 18 at Heinz Field on Sunday Night Football.

Steelers
GAME WINNER—Steelers running back Isaac Redman (33) dives for the winning touchdown during the fourth quarter of their game against the New York Giants, Sunday, Nov. 4, in East Rutherford, N.J. The Steelers won 24-20. (AP Photo/The Record of Bergen County, Tyson Trish)

The Chiefs continue year after year of being one of the worst teams in football. They are coming off a 31-13 beating by the hands of the San Diego Chargers. On paper they have no one on their roster who should be a threat to the Steelers. At quarterback Matt Cassel and Brady Quinn have been sharing the position with no one really standing out. Quinn had replaced Cassel, but because of an injury Cassel started last week. Who will start against the Steelers is still not known, most likely Cassel.

Their running game is led by Jamaal Charles who has a good yards per carry average, 4.8, but only had 39 yards against a weak Charger defense, before having to leave the game in the second half. It’s not clear if he’s going to play against the Steelers or not.

Overall the Chiefs are ranked 30th in points scored, 16.6, and 29th in points allowed, 30.

Despite the loss of Troy Polamalu, the Steelers defense have actually improved over the past two games with Will Allen joining Ryan Clark at the safety spots, which has protected Ike Taylor and Keenen Lewis at the cornerback slots, allowing them to play tighter man-to-man defense. The Steelers defense has been solid to the man, especially the past two games. They currently rank second in the NFL overall behind the San Francisco 49ers, and 9th in points allowed.

On offense the running game is back. After Jonathan Dwyer had two consecutive games of 100 yards or more, there was some concern when he went down with an injury, but Isaac Redman stepped in to make it three in a row with 147 yards on just 20 carries.

The Ravens stayed on top of the AFC North with an unexpectedly tough 25-15 victory over the Cleveland Browns, 2-7. They will face the Oakland Raiders, 3-5, at home before they face off with the Steelers on Sunday Night Football.

Week 11 is when flexible scheduling kicks in, allowing the NFL to move a more appealing matchup into prime time if need be. But with the rival Ravens (6-2) and Steelers (5-3) again battling for the AFC North title, NBC is keeping the game.

The league said Monday that the Indianapolis Colts’ trip to play the New England Patriots, matching quarterbacks Andrew Luck and Tom Brady, would move from 1 to 4:25 p.m. EST on CBS that weekend.

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