Berea – The Browns and Steelers have been going at it for over 50 years and
the team’s will do battle this week on a primetime ESPN game Sunday Night. This
will be the 105th regular season meeting of the two teams, with the Browns
holding a 55-49 advantage over the Steelers.
However, there hasn’t been much of a rivalry --in terms of the Browns being
competitive-- since the team returned in 1999. In fact, the Steelers have won
nine of the 12 meetings between the teams since the return.
In fact, the last time the Browns won was on Oct. 5, 2003 when the Browns won
33-13 at Pittsburgh when William Green rushed for 115 yards—also on prime time.
“I know it’s a rivalry, but it’s the next game that we have to play,” Romeo
Crennel said. “They are a very good football team. That’s the thing that we have
to understand. We’re playing a very good football team in their place. If we
don’t play our best game, it’ll be tough.”
With the advent of free agency and the turnover of players, especially with
28 players who weren’t here last year, some wonder if the players know about the
“There are some new faces but probably not everyone understands the rivalry,”
Crennel said. “But, they know it’s a big game. If they don’t, they will
understand it by the end of the week.
“It’s Pittsburgh and Cleveland,” Crennel said. “Other than the fact it is a
big rivalry, I don’t think any team can underestimate the other guy in a rivalry
For the players who’ve been here, they said it won’t take long for the new
players to understand the intensity of the game.
“I think everyone knows the Browns/Steelers rivalry,” Alvin McKinley said.
“You don’t have to be around here too long to figure it out.”
Ryan Tucker is in his fourth season with the Browns.
“I’m from Cleveland, now,” Tucker said. “I know how important this game is
for the fans, as well as for the team.”
Ben Taylor, who hails from southeastern Ohio in Steelers’ country, knows how
important this game is for the fans of the Cleveland. “There are a lot of
Steeler fans from back where I grew up,” Taylor said. “They always say they’re
rooting for me, but still want the Steelers to win.”
Orpheus Roye played for the Steelers his first four seasons and still gets up
to play the Steelers.
“I always look forward to playing Pittsburgh,” Roye said. “There’s a little
extra energy and adrenaline flowing. I want to have a good game and play well.”
The Steelers know the sense of history, as well, starting with coach Bill
Cowher, who started his playing career and coaching career in Cleveland.
“The history is tied together with the proximity of the two cities and the
history of the teams over the years,” Cowher said.
This week’s starting quarterback for the Steelers, Charlie Batch grew up in
the Pittsburgh area.
“I think the guys have a sense of (the rivalry),” Batch said. “For me,
growing up in Pittsburgh, this is nothing new to me because it’s city to city.
It’s a rivalry game for the fans in both cities.”
Richardson Player of Week: What a difference a week makes as P Kyle Richardson went from as close to the NFL unemployment line as a player could get
to being named the AFC Special Teams Player of the Week.
“The player of the week is by performance and he went out and performed,”
Crennel said. “Particularly, with the wind conditions, he did a great job.”
After shanking three punts in the previous two weeks, Richardson was able to
pin the Titans inside the 20-yard line three times despite the unpleasant
kicking conditions. He had five punts for 203 yards (40.6 avg.), including a
long punt of 54 yards. He also made a key tackle in the second quarter on
Titans’ PR Lamont Thompson to end a 31-yard return.
“It’s quite an honor,” Richardson said. “It’s the first time I’ve received
the award. I’m very happy for it.”
Richardson is the second Browns player to be honored this year with the other
being QB Trent Dilfer, who was AFC Offensive Player of the Week on Sept. 21.
Both players have had their rough spots this season.
“The Player of the Week goes to a player who performs,” Crennel said. “Both
of those guys have been around long enough to know how to work out of some
“Hopefully, they can be Players of the Week the next week and continue to
show more consistency.”
Injury Update: OL Cosey Coleman is doubtful with a sprained knee, as is RB
William Green (ankle).
“We’ll take a look at (Coleman) later in the week,” Crennel said. “It will
come down to a game time decision unless they tell me otherwise. Green is making
improvement, but is doubtful, right now.”
Crennel also said CB Daylon McCutcheon (ankle) will not practice today, but
anticipates he’ll play.
Crennel said Mike Pucillo will start if Coleman can’t go.
“Pucillo did a decent job stepping in last week,” he said. “He played his
Crennel said RB Lee Suggs will practice this week.
“Lee will try to practice this week and we’ll see if he can hang onto the
ball with his thumb.”
Browns Host HS Coaches: The Browns invited the four coaches of the
participants of this Saturday’s Division I Regional Semifinals that will be held
at Cleveland Browns Stadium.
“It’s a big weekend for high school football and we’re glad to be a part of
it,” Crennel said as he introduced the coaches.
St. Edward will play Brush at 1 p.m. and followed by a 5 p.m. kickoff with
Glenville taking on Solon.
“It’s going to be exciting to play in the playoffs,” Brush coach Jason Hall
It’s the first time in school history that Brush has made it to the playoffs.
St. Edwards coach John Gibbons has been on the field before, albeit the old
“I had a chance to play in the old stadium,” Gibbons said. “I was a season
ticket holder and remember running around on the field when the Browns beat the
Colts, 27-0 in 1964.”
Glenville is one of the top teams, not only in Ohio, but in the nation.
“For the kids, I think it will be huge,” Ted Ginn, Sr. said. “We’re thankful
the city and the community is behind our kids.”
“We have a ton of Browns fans in our locker room,” Solon coach Jim McQuaide
said. “To have a chance to play a nationally ranked team like Glenville on their
field, will really be fun.”
Tickets are available at each school until Friday for $10 (adults) and $6
(students). On game day, tickets will be $12 at Cleveland Browns Stadium.