PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – The Pittsburgh Steelers will play host to the New England Patriots Sunday night with taking control of first place in the AFC North on their minds.
With Baltimore (6-3) losing 26-21 on a final-minute drive by the Atlanta Falcons on Thursday, the Steelers (6-2) now have a chance to take sole possession of first place with a win over the Pats.
However, New England (6-2) is also mired in a battle for the top spot in the AFC East with the New York Jets (6-2).
Pittsburgh leads the all-time series 13-7, which does not include a 1-3 record against New England in the playoffs.
Including the playoffs, the Patriots have won six of the previous eight meetings between the two teams.
In their most recent meeting, the Steelers snapped the Patriots’ NFL-record 18-game regular season winning streak in 2008 with a decisive 33-10 win.
It’s no secret that the Pats’ offense is led by quarterback Tom Brady.
So far this season, Brady has thrown for 1,826 yards with 14 touchdowns and four interceptions.
Rookie tight end Aaron Hernandez is building a good rapport with Brady and leads the team with 436 receiving yards. He has also found the endzone twice this season.
Wes Welker is continuing to make big plays and leads the team with 44 receptions.
For Pittsburgh, Ben Roethlisberger hasn’t shown any signs of rust since missing the first four games of the season and is already closing in on 1,000 passing yards.
In four games, Big Ben has thrown for 917 yards with six touchdowns and three interceptions.
Mike Wallace has been taking full advantage of his speed and leads the team with 507 receiving yards and five touchdowns. He’s also averaging 23.1 yards per catch.
Rashard Mendenhall continues to lead the ground attack and has already racked up 702 yards and seven touchdowns.
The Steelers and Patriots will renew their rivalry at 8:20 p.m. at Heinz Field.