I was convinced the battle to watch was our #7 O vs. the Stillers' #1 D. With a couple of 400+ games under our belt and significant improvement since the beginning of the season, an offensive victory would be huge for this team. And, if it was against the #1 D in the league, it would be, like ya know, cool like (been hanging around my teenager too long).
I was convinced, that is, until one of our fine rival bloggers suggested Patriots' D vs. Steelers' O. We've run into this before. Even in 2007, our D was much maligned as having the luxury of a record breaking offense; they had a cushion. Some of the numbers are remarkably similar. As an example, we're at the bottom of the barrel for red zone defense at 31...almost identical to last year. And cornerback is, well, cornerback. Have I mentioned Rodney's IR'd?
I think our rival blogger has a point. The Steelers' D and Patriots' O have already proven their worth and ability. The Steelers' O and Patriots' D could be the battle to watch, IFF (if and only if for the non-boolean logic folks in the crowd) they show up. IFF Big Ben "shows up", we'll be in for a long day, especially in the red zone. Consequently, if our D manages to exert pressure on Ben and make him jittery, it'll give our offense that much more time on the field.
This is gonna be a good one...