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Pittsburgh Steelers @ New Orleans Saints: Game Preview

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PITTSBURGH STEELERS (5-1) AT NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (4-3)

SERIES

 

STEELERS

SAINTS

SERIES LEADER

7-6

STREAKS

3 of past 4

COACHES VS. OPP.

Tomlin: 0-0

Payton: 0-1

LAST WEEK

W 23-22 at Dolphins

L 30-17 vs. Browns

LAST GAME

11/12/06: Saints 31 at Steelers 38.  Pittsburgh RB Willie Parker runs for 213 yards & 2 TDs as Steelers overcome 24-17 halftime deficit. 

LAST GAME AT SITE

10/6/02: Saints 32, Steelers 29.  New Orleans RB Deuce McAllister rushes for 123 yards & 2 TDs, including 52-yard score, as Saints hold off late Steelers comeback attempt.

BROADCAST

NBC (7:20 PM CT): Al Michaels, Cris Collinsworth, Andrea Kremer (Field reporter).  Westwood One Radio: Dave Simms, James Lofton, Scott Kaplan (Field reporter).  SIRIUS: 127 (WW1), 125 (Pit.), 126 (NO).  XM: 104 (WW1), 102 (Pit.), 103 (NO). 

STATS

PASSING

Roethlisberger: 35-54-559-5-1-122.4

Brees: 200-287-2,029 (1C)-14 (T1L)-10-91.4 (2C)

RUSHING

Mendenhall: 131-532-4.1-5

Ivory (R): 59-325-5.5-0

RECEIVING

Ward: 24-350-14.6-3

Colston: 40-452-11.3-1

OFFENSE

300.7

371.9

TAKE/GIVE

+8 (T2L)

-5

DEFENSE

299.3 (2C)

288.4 (3L)

SACKS

Harrison: 5

Ellis: 3

INTs

Polamalu: 2

4 tied: 1

PUNTING

Sepulveda: 46.8 (3C)

Morstead: 47.6 (1C)

KICKING

Reed: 47 (14/14 PAT; 11/15 FG)

Hartley: 31 (13/13 PAT; 6/10 FG)

 

NOTES

STEELERS:  Club has won 3 of past 4 vs. Saints since '90...Pit has 10-4 record (.714) vs. NFC under MIKE TOMLIN... Steelers seek 5th straight win on road...QB BEN ROETHLISBERGER (19,861) needs 139 passing yards to become 2nd QB in franchise history w/ 20,000 (TERRY BRADSHAW, 27,989).  Has 18-5 record (.783) vs. NFC w/ 32 TDs vs. 16 INTs & 94.2 passer rating.  Had 3 TDs vs. 0 INTs & 127.7 passer rating in only meeting vs. NO on 11/12/06...RB RASHARD MENDENHALL (5) needs 2 rush TDs to tie career high of 7 in '09...WR HINES WARD aims for 3rd game in row w/ TD rec.  Posted 2nd 100-yard rec. game of season last week (131) & 27th of career.  WR MIKE WALLACE has 4 TD rec. in '10 & averages 42.3 yards per TD rec. (169 total)...Defense allows league-low 13.7 points per game this year...Wallace, S RYAN CLARK & CB IKE TAYLOR are natives of La...LB LAWRENCE TIMMONS leads team w/ 60 tackles.

SAINTS QB DREW BREES has won 8 of 9 vs. AFC (incl. SB).  In those 9, has completed 226 of 324 (69.8 pct.) for 2,600 yards with 17 TDs vs. 8 INTs for 100.8 rating.  Last week, became fastest QB in history to reach 20,000 yards with new team (70 games).  Since joining NO in '06, has 20,327 pass yards (most in NFL during span) & is 2nd Saints QB to reach 20,000 (ARCHIE MANNING, 21,734).  Passed for 398 yards & 1 TD in last meeting...RB CHRIS IVORY has 206 rush yards in past 2 (103 per game).  RB PIERRE THOMAShas 4 rush TDs in past 5 vs. AFC...WR MARQUES COLSTON aims for 4th in row vs. AFC with TD catch.  In last meeting, had 10 catches for 169 yards (16.9 avg.).  In only game vs. Pit., TE JEREMY SHOCKEY had 2-yard TD catch (12/18/04 w/ NYG)...LB SCOTT SHANLE had sack in last meeting.  S DARREN SHARPER has 3 TFLs in past 2 vs. Pit.  LB JO-LONN DUNBAR had 1st career sack in Week 7.

 

PITTSBURGH STEELERS (5-1) at NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (4-3) (Sunday night, NBC, 8:20 PM ET)      

Winners of the past two Super Bowl titles will meet in primetime on Halloween.  It's the 5-1 Steelers, who are on top of the AFC North and tied for the best record in the NFL, matched up against the defending Super Bowl champion New Orleans Saints.

The Steelers defense is once again operating efficiently under defensive coordinator DICK LE BEAU - who has led a ferocious unit that allows a league-low 13.7 points per game.  The Steelers are 3-0 on the road this season and are in the middle of a stretch of three straight road games.  Pittsburgh won the first leg of the road trip, defeating the Dolphins 23-22 in Week 7.  The club is 12-3 (.800) in primetime regular-season games under head coach MIKE TOMLIN

Meanwhile, the Saints are focused on a quick turnaround, but are not in panic mode after a 30-17 loss last week to the Browns.

"We're still a work in progress," says head coach SEAN PAYTON.  "We're sitting here at 4-3, and now the good news is, there are nine games left in the regular season.  We're not at the halfway mark yet.  We have all of our division to play again."