December 04, 2014

PITTSBURGH (10-6) at CINCINNATI (12-4)

Saturday, 8:15 p.m., CBS

OPENING LINE - Pick `em

RECORD VS. SPREAD - Steelers 8-5-3, Bengals 12-3-1

SERIES RECORD - Steelers lead 57-35

LAST MEETING - Steelers beat Bengals 33-20, Dec. 13, 2015

LAST WEEK - Steelers beat Browns 28-12; Bengals beat Ravens 24-16

AP PRO32 RANKING - Steelers No. 9, Bengals No. 7

STEELERS OFFENSE - OVERALL (3), RUSH (16), PASS (3).

STEELERS DEFENSE - OVERALL (21), RUSH (5), PASS (30).

BENGALS OFFENSE - OVERALL (15), RUSH (13), PASS (15).

BENGALS DEFENSE - OVERALL (11), RUSH (7), PASS (20).

STREAKS, STATS AND NOTES - Teams met one other time in playoffs, first-round game at Paul Brown Stadium during 2005 season. Carson Palmer suffered major knee injury on his first pass, and Steelers pulled away to 31-17 win on way to Super Bowl. ... Steelers are 14-3 all-time at Paul Brown Stadium, which opened in 2000. ... Teams got into scuffle during pregame warmups on Dec. 13, but nobody was fined. League fined five players total of $118,649 for infractions during game. Bengals LB Vontaze Burfict was fined $69,454 for three infractions: roughing passer, grabbing facemask, and unnecessary roughness. ... Steelers' 28 playoff appearances since merger in 1970 are most in league. ... Pittsburgh has played in 56 postseason games, trailing Dallas (60) for most in history. ... QB Ben Roethlisberger is 10-5 all-time in postseason. ... WR Antonio Brown has 136 catches for 1,834 yards and 10 TDs. He's only player in NFL history with at least 125 catches, 1,800 yards receiving and 10 TD catches. ... Bengals haven't won playoff game since 1990 season, sixth-longest streak of postseason futility in NFL history. ... Bengals have lost opening-round game in four straight seasons, NFL record. ... Bengals coach Marvin Lewis is 0-6 in playoffs, tied with Jim Mora for most consecutive playoffs losses to start career. ... Bengals matched club record with 12 wins. Other two times they went 12-4 were 1981 and 1988, and they reached Super Bowl both times. ... Bengals' defense allowed club-record 279 points, fewest in AFC. ... QB AJ McCarron took over when Andy Dalton broke right thumb in Dec. 13 game. McCarron went 22 of 32 for 280 yards with three sacks, two TDs and two INTs, although much of yardage came after game was out of reach. In his three starts, Bengals went 2-1 and McCarron was 54 of 83 for 552 yards with four TDs, no INTs, one fumble and passer rating of 100.1. ... McCarron trying to become first NFL QB to win playoff game with three or fewer career starts since Gifford Nielsen led Oilers over Chargers in 1979 season. ... Fantasy Tip: Roethlisberger is 20-4 in games in his native state of Ohio: 11-2 in Cincinnati, 9-2 in Cleveland.

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