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mesaSteeler
12-04-2011, 08:59 AM
Bengals vs. Steelers: Inside the Game
http://www.timesonline.com/sports/local_sports/bengals-vs-steelers-inside-the-game/article_f8078b6e-1e78-11e1-9494-0019bb30f31a.html?mode=print
By Mike Bires mbires@timesonline.com | Posted: Sunday, December 4, 2011 8:04 am

BENGALS (7-4) vs. STEELERS (8-3)

1 p.m. at Heinz Field (65,50)

TV

CBS (locally KDKA, Channel 2)

Jim Nantz, play-by play; Phil Simms, analysis

TODAY'S STORYLINE

For the second time in three weeks, the Bengals (7-4) and Steelers (8-3) meet again. This time, the stakes are even higher as both teams try to keep up with the Ravens (8-3) in the AFC North. On Nov. 13, the Steelers won in Cincinnati, 24-17.

STAT SPEAK

0: That's how many touchdowns the Bengals defense allowed in their past two visits to Pittsburgh. Last year in a 23-7 win, SS Troy Polamalu and LB LaMarr Woodley returned interceptions for the Steelers' only TDs. Two years ago, the Bengals won 18-12.

INJURY REPORT

LB LaMarr Woodley returns after missing three games with a hamstring pull. SS Troy Polamalu is also expected to play after leaving last week's win in Kansas City with concussion-like symptoms. C Maurkice Pouncey will also start after missing most of the K.C. game with a stomach virus ... QB Ben Roethlisberger is listed as probable as he continues to play with a broken right thumb. LB Larry Foote (hamstring) is questionable. WR Arnaz Battle (hamstring) and LB Chris Carter (hamstring) won't play.

For the Bengals, backup DE Carlos Dunlap (hamstring) is doubtful. CB Nate Clements (hamstring) and SS Chris Crocker (biceps), both starters, are listed as questionable.

QUOTEWORTHY

"No way I'm going to play if there's any hesitation (from doctors) or if there are any symptoms of a concussion. There is probably no more serious injury anyone can have than a concussion."

-- Troy Polamalu, who's been knocked out of two games this season with concussion-like symptoms

BETTING LINE

The Steelers are favored by 7 points.

WHY THE STEELERS WILL WIN

Andy Dalton has played this season, but he's still a rookie and rookie quarterbacks just don't beat Dick LeBeau-led defenses. Since 2004, the Steelers are 13-1 against rookie QBs. Dalton found that out three weeks ago when he threw two fourth-quarter interceptions in the Steelers' win in Cincinnati. Today, Dalton faces the Steelers again but this time in a hostile Heinz Field environment. So it will be ...

Steelers 28, Bengals 17

-- MIKE BIRES