Tonight's matchup: The Steelers take on the Cleveland Browns tonight in a key AFC North matchup. Both teams have identical 1-1 records and are coming off losses last week.
Tonight will be the 142nd overall meeting between the two teams, and the 139th in the regular season. The Steelers lead the overall series 79-61-1.
The Steelers have won 16 of 23 games at FirstEnergy Stadium.
Stopping the run: The Steelers run defense will have their hands full on Thursday night against the Browns with Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Chubb has 39 carries for 228 yards and three touchdowns through two games, while Hunt has 24 carries for 104 yards and a touchdown.
It's going to be a challenge for the defense, one Coach Mike Tomlin knows is a primary focus this week.
"I think if you're playing these guys, and you're looking at their offense, boy you better minimize Chubb and Hunt," said Tomlin. "A lot of ball rolls to those guys. They're not 1 and 2, they're 1 and 1A. I think Chubb's got 76 snaps on the season; I think Hunt's got 74.
"Man, both guys are capable. Both guys are good in all schematic circumstances, be it the run game, the passing game, check downs, screens, inside and outside. They are a formidable tandem and probably the most complete tandem in football and so we got out work cut out for us there."
A lethal tandem: The Browns run game is going to present a challenge to the Steelers on Thursday night, with the combination of Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt. Chubb has 39 carries for 228 yards and three touchdowns through two games, while Hunt has 24 carries for 104 yards and a touchdown.
"They have a good stable of backs," said linebacker Malik Reed. "We watch film on them. Even now they talk about playing against those guys, them being one of the best tandems in the league. I know we have to do a great job against them."
The Browns have had their share of success running the ball, and while it's Chubb and Hunt who get most of the credit, their offensive line has been solid providing them the holes they need.
"They have some athletic guys, smart guys," said Reed. "Know what they want to do in the run game. We have to do a good job of preparing and preparing quickly in the short week."
The defense wants to come out strong after not being able to get off the field on the final drive last week, when the Patriots got the ball with 6:33 to play on their own 30-yard line and were able to move the ball to the Steelers 15-yard line where they were able to just run out the clock.
"It's just being on top of the details," said Reed. "In those last few seconds, those critical moments, we have to be sharp on those things and execute when it comes down to it. When the game hangs in the balance, get another chance for the offense to go out there and make a play if we get off the field at that point. It's getting off the field in those critical moments."
He said it: Linebacker Alex Highsmith is pumped to be playing on Thursday Night Football, especially in an AFC North Matchup on the road against the Cleveland Browns.
"I am excited for this," said Highsmith. "It's my first time being there for a primetime game. I have heard the atmosphere is crazy there for primetime games. I know it's going to be loud. I know it's going to be a challenge for us to go in there. I know it's going to be hostile. I am looking forward to going to that environment and cause some havoc. That's what we've got to do. We've got to cause havoc and take the crowd out of it."
Added on: The Steelers elevated linebacker Delontae Scott from the practice squad to the Active/Inactive Roster for Thursday's game against the Cleveland Browns at FirstEnergy Stadium.
Scott, who was also elevated to the Active/Inactive roster for the Patriots game, was originally signed to the Steelers practice squad in 2021 and spent time on the Active/Inactive roster as a game day call up last season as well, and played against the Los Angeles Chargers in Week 11 of 2021.
Scott was signed by the Green Bay Packers as an undrafted rookie free agent following the 2020 NFL Draft. He played at SMU where he appeared in 40 games and had 97 tackles, 36 of them for a loss, with 18 sacks and five forced fumbles. In his senior season he had 10 of his 18 sacks as well as three forced fumbles.
Scott can revert back to the practice squad following the game without having to clear waivers.
Downfield threat: On Tuesday morning, quarterback Mitch Trubisky said he wants to give "our playmakers more of a chance."
"I could take more opportunities down the field where we could get our playmakers the football," said Trubisky. "I think it's better decision making and just taking those opportunities for sure."
Receiver Chase Claypool, a proven deep threat, likes Trubisky's mindset and knows they have the weapons to make it work.
"I think we're a group that can do that," said Claypool. "I think defenses are going to be on the lookout, so were not going to be able to do it every time. Sprinkle it in here and there."
Claypool would like to see the deep ball be a part of the offense on Thursday night when they play the Browns. It would give them the splash everyone is searching for.
"I think you can take advantage of some things down the field," said Claypool. "It would be nice to have every scoring drive five plays. Sometimes it doesn't work out that way."
Whatever the plan is on offense, Claypool knows it has to be one to counteract a Browns' defense that is going to be coming at them hard as they are trying to rebound from a late loss to the New York Jets.
"I think they are a super aggressive defense that likes to disrupt plays, so they're going to give us a challenge in terms of getting those deep shots, or even running the ball," said Claypool. "They're going to rally to the ball."
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WATCH/STREAMThursday Night is now Amazon's Prime Night of Football.Game coverage begins Thursday at 8:15 p.m. ET; Al Michaels (play-by-play), Kirk Herbstreit (analysis) and Kaylee Hartung (sideline reporter) are on the game call.Fans can watch the game from anywhere in the country - on any connected device - at home or on the go. Visit amazon.com/tnf for more information.If fans need additional support, they can visit the Thursday Night Football Help Hub here.The game will also be broadcast locally in the Pittsburgh market on WPXI (NBC).The NFL also offers fans a number of ways to watch this regular season game on their digital devices:NFL+ Premium gives you the freedom to watch LIVE local & primetime Regular Season and Postseason games on your phone or tablet, full & condensed replays of every game, and MORE! Whether you are at the stadium or on-the-go, you will never miss a moment with NFL+. NOTE: NFL+ is only available to users within the United States. For a full description of features, requirements, limitations, and other information, visit NFL+ SupportFans outside of the United States can stream the game via the NFL's GamePass International product.Don't forget all Steelers postgame press conferences are streamed live on Steelers.com, the Steelers Official Mobile App, Facebook and Twitter.LISTENSteelers Radio Network - Game coverage begins at 8:15 p.m. ET; Pregame programming begins at 4:15 p.m. ET; Postgame coverage starts immediately following the game.Bill Hillgrove (play-by-play), Craig Wolfley (color analyst), Missi Matthews (sideline) and Max Starks (sideline) are on the call.Fans in the Pittsburgh area can listen locally on WDVE 102.5 FM & WBGG 970 AM.The Steelers Radio Network will broadcast the game live through our radio affiliates. Click here for a list of our radio affiliates.The game broadcast is also carried on Steelers Nation Radio (SNR). SNR is streamed on Steelers.com and the Official Steelers Mobile App. Fans can listen to pregame and postgame programming from anywhere in the world on these platforms. NFL geographical restrictions apply to the game broadcast stream for mobile web and mobile app users. Desktop user may listen to this broadcast from anywhere in the world on Steelers.com.SiriusXM subscribers can listen to Steelers game live. Please visit SiriusXM's Steelers broadcast page for channel details.CONNECTCheck out Game Day Central on Steelers.com for up to the minute stats and more.On the go? Download the Steelers Official Mobile App and follow along with our Game Center that features stats and drive charts.Play the YinzChat presented by UniBet the Steelers Official Mobile App prior to each week's game to win prizes.Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat. Don't forget to use #HereWeGo.Don't miss live pre and postgame programming on FacebookWatch Coach Mike Tomlin's press conference, LIVE immediately following the game, on Steelers.com, the Steelers Official Mobile App, Facebook and Twitter.