PITTSBURGH (KDKA/AP) – Steelers running back Rashard Mendenhall is ready to run the Steelers into the Super Bowl.
Mendenhall is the Steelers leading rusher with 1,273 yards this season. The past two seasons, Mendenhall has either watched the playoffs from the sidelines or from his home. Now though, Mendenhall is hoping for the third time to be a charm.
When the Steelers went to the Super Bowl two years ago in his rookie season, Mendenhall was sidelined with a shoulder injury.
This season, Mendenhall is healthy and one game from reaching the the big game. However, to get therer, the Steelers (13-4) must beat the New York Jets (13-5) and their third ranked rushing defense.
The Jets allowed an average of 90.9 rushing yards per game, and were ranked behind the Steelers and Chicago Bears.
In their two AFC playoff games, the Jets rushing defense has allowed 113 yards against the Patriots and 93 against the Colts.
When the Jets came to Heinz Field in Week 15, the Steelers ran for a total of 146 yards with Mendenhall gaining 99 yards alone.