The Denver Broncos and Pittsburgh Steelers will meet in the Mile High City this Sunday in the second of two AFC Divisional Playoff games this weekend. The Broncos and Steelers played each other in Week 15 this season, which Pittsburgh won at home, 34-27. The Steelers scored 21 points in the second half while holding the Broncos scoreless, to rally to victory. This will be the eighth time the two franchises go head-to-head in the postseason. Denver leads the all-time playoff series 4-3, including winning three of the last four meetings, the most recent being in the 2012 Wild Card Playoff.
Last week, the Steelers went on the road and defeated their AFC North rival Cincinnati Bengals, 18-16, in the AFC Wild Card. Pittsburgh did not allow Cincinnati to score during the first three quarters, but then the Bengals took the 16-15 lead with less than two minutes remaining. Due to two unsportsmanlike penalties and undisciplined play by Cincinnati, the Steelers were able to move down the field and steal the victory after a late field goal by kicker Chris Boswell. With the victory, the Steelers tied the Dallas Cowboys for the most playoff victories of any franchise, with 34. Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who has a sprained shoulder, will likely play in the game despite being ruled as questionable. However, the Steelers will be without star receiver Antonio Brown, who did not pass NFL concussion protocol, and running back DeAngelo Williams, who suffered a foot injury in the regular-season finale.
On the Broncos side, they have won the AFC West for the fifth straight season and go into the playoffs with a 15-5 postseason record at home. Future Hall of Fame quarterback Peyton Manning is healthy and will get the start over Brock Osweiler. Manning ranks second in NFL playoff history in passing yards, completions, and attempts, behind only New England's Tom Brady. This season, Manning tied Brett Favre for most regular season wins of all-time, with 186. The Broncos were also able to get it done on the ground this year, as they were one of two teams to have two 700-yard rushers this season, led by Ronnie Hillman and C.J. Anderson. However, the Broncos defense is what allowed the team to push through injuries to another AFC West title. Denver's defense led the NFL in total defense and pass defense this year. Outside linebacker Von Miller led the team with 10 sacks this season, joining Simon Fletcher as the only Broncos to have four or more 10-sack seasons. Miller is one of four Denver players that were selected to the Pro Bowl, along with defensive end DeMarcus Ware and cornerbacks Aqib Talib and Chris Harris Jr.