OPENING LINE: Steelers by 1
SERIES RECORD: Steelers lead 62-56
LAST MEETING: Steelers beat Browns 13-9, Jan. 1, 2012
LAST WEEK: Steelers lost to Ravens 13-10; Browns lost to Cowboys 23-20 OT
DID YOU KNOW? Longtime, bitter AFC North rivals meet for first time this season. ... Steelers forced to start 37-year-old QB Charlie Batch because of rib injuries to starter Ben Roethlisberger and backup Byron Leftwich. ... Batch 5-2 while filling in for Roethlisberger. ... Steelers re-signed veteran WR Plaxico Burress. Burress, 35, played five seasons (2000-04) with Steelers, who drafted him with No. 8 overall pick in 2000. ... Burress needed to add depth because of injuries to Jerricho Cotchery (ribs) and Antonio Brown (ankle). Brown could return to face Browns. ... Super S Troy Polamalu hasn't played since Oct. 4 because of right calf injury. ... Coach Mike Tomlin 9-1 vs. Cleveland. ... Steelers 11-2 in Cleveland since '99. ... Steelers 1-3 on road this season.
Browns have lost 16 of 17 to Steelers and 4-23 vs. Pittsburgh since 1999. ... New Browns owner Jimmy Haslam still has minority share in Steelers. ... Browns continue to lose heartbreakers. Sunday's loss in Dallas was fifth this season by seven points or less, and league-leading 18th by less than touchdown since 2010. ... Browns flagged for 12 penalties against Cowboys, who picked up 10 first downs on infractions. ... Browns recorded season-high seven sacks at Dallas. ... Browns expected to get back CB Joe Haden, who missed last game with oblique injury. Browns 0-5 without top cornerback this season.
OPENING LINE: Bears by 6
SERIES RECORD: Vikings lead 52-48-2
LAST MEETING: Bears beat Vikings 17-13, Jan. 1, 2012
LAST WEEK: Vikings had bye; Bears lost to San Francisco 32-7
DID YOU KNOW? Teams meet twice in next three weeks, with Bears visiting Vikings Dec. 9. ... Vikings had dropped two straight before beating Detroit Nov. 11. ... RB Adrian Peterson leadsNFLwith 1,128 yards rushing: more than 21 teams. Has run for at least 100 in four straight games for second time in career. Team record five straight with 100 or more by Robert Smith. Peterson also tied for second in league with seven TD runs. ... WR Percy Harvin tied for eighth inNFLwith 62 receptions. Harvin has caught pass in every game he's played in, including playoffs (56).
Bears coming off back-to-back losses to Houston and San Francisco. ... Chicago leadsNFLwith 30 takeaways: five in red zone, tying New England and New Orleans for league lead. ... Bears have seven defensive TDs, all on interception returns. ... Bears have outscored opponents 249-165 and rank fifth in point differential. ... QB Jay Cutler missed Monday's game with concussion. Has thrown for 11,073 yards as Bear and needs 131 to pass Jim McMahon. Jim Harbaugh second on club's list with 11,567. ... WR Brandon Marshall just two catches for 21 yards last week.
at NEW ORLEANS
OPENING LINE: 49ers by 1
SERIES RECORD: 49ers lead 46-24-2
LAST MEETING: 49ers beat Saints 36-32, Jan. 14, 2012
LAST WEEK: 49ers beat Bears 32-7; Saints beat Raiders 38-17
DID YOU KNOW? 49ers QB Alex Smith had three TDs, 0 INTs and a 103.2 rating when teams last met in last season's divisional playoffs. He also ran for a 28-yard TD. ... When Smith sat out last week (concussion), QB Colin Kaepernick had two TDs, 0 INTs and 133.1 rating in first career start against Chicago last Monday night. ... WR Michael Crabtree has four TDs in past three games.
New Orleans has won five of last six after 0-4 start. ... QB Drew Brees holdsNFLrecords with TD passes in 53 straight games and 20 or more completions in 46 straight. ... New Orleans has allowed at least 400 yards of offense in all 10 games. ... New Orleans has rushed for 140 yards or more in each of last three games, all with RB Darren Sproles out (broken hand). ... WR Marques Colston has 55 career TDs and needs one more to pass Deuce McAllister for most by Saint.
at N.Y. GIANTS
OPENING LINE: Giants by 2½
SERIES RECORD: Packers 31-24-2
LAST MEETING: Giants beat Packers 37-20, Jan. 15, 2012
LAST WEEK: Packers beat Lions 24-20; Giants had bye
DID YOU KNOW? Fourth meeting between Giants and packers in three seasons. Green Bay won two regular-season games, New York won playoff game last season. Packers five-game win streak tied with Denver forNFL'slongest current streak. ... In past seven games, quarterback Aaron Rodgers 6-1 with 24 touchdowns, four interceptions and 117 QB rating. In last two regular-season starts vs. New York, he has thrown for 773 yards, eight TDs, one interception with a 121.2 rating. Packers 25-0 when Rodgers starts and has 115-plus rating. ...Wide receiver Randall Cobb caught six touchdowns in last four games and aims for fifth straight game with TD.
New York comes off bye on two-game losing streak. ... Quarterback Eli Manning has thrown 197 touchdown passes and needs two to tie Phil Simms for most by Giant. ... In past two games against Green Bay, including playoffs, he has a 106.9 rating with six TDs, two interceptions and 677 yards. ...Giants 10-0 when Ahmad Bradshaw runs for at least 100 yards. ... Receiver Victor Cruz has 28 catches for 427 yards and five touchdowns in last four home games. ...Receiver Hakeem Nicks had seven catches for 165 yards and two TDs in playoff win over Green Bay.