Bengals vs. Steelers: What to Watch For

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Dec 23, 2012; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker LaMarr Woodley (56) lines up against the Cincinnati Bengals during the first half of the game at Heinz Field. Mandatory Credit: Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

Certain teams seem to have a mental edge over other teams. Certain stadiums are harder to play in than others. And certain situations make teams more dangerous. Unfortunately for the Bengals, the Steelers fit all three of these characteristics.

First, Ben Roethlisberger is 14-5 against the Bengals, the Steelers lead the overall series 52-34, and ever since I can remember, the Steelers have seemed to have a mental edge over the Bengals and the Bengals seem to be aware of this – whether they believe it or not. Second, while their 3-3 record at Heinz Field may not make it apparent, beating the Steelers in Pittsburgh is a tough task. Mike Tomlin has a 39-15 home record since taking over the Steelers.

Lastly, we all know how “dangerous a wounded animal” is. Especially a wounded animal with nothing to lose. The Steelers, slight as it may be, still have a shot at the playoffs if they win out, and after this game, they have winnable games against Green Bay and Cleveland. While some may see that as pressure, I see that as a giving them the ability to play loose.

The Bengals have all the pressure in this game and come in favored. The Steelers are going to throw everything they can at the Bengals and capitalize on anything and everything that goes their way….oh yeah, this is also a 2-time Super Bowl winning quarter back we are talking about. 2 game lead in the division or not, this is a very big and very dangerous game for the Bengals.

So, here is What to Look For….