Pettine on Browns’ history against Steelers: Recognize it, but break off rearview mirror

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Browns safety Donte Whitner grew up in Cleveland and is aware enough of his team’s history with the Steelers to know that any talk of a rivalry with their AFC North foe has to wait “until both sides throw punches and win football games.”

The Browns haven’t done much of either since returning to the league in 1999. They are 5-26 against the Steelers in that span, something that has nothing to do with first-year head coach Mike Pettine. He’s not shying away from discussing the ugly record, though. He’s used it as a motivational tool for his players, pointing out that no one in Pittsburgh considers in a rivalry and challenging them to break the trend in the season opener.

“When you look at one win in Heinz Field in 14 tries, two wins in the last seven years, five wins in the last 36 times against them, it’s brutal when you truly look at it,” Pettine said, via the Akron Beacon Journal. “But that’s something that’s a big part of our prep, understanding that that has nothing to do with us, that has nothing to do with this game and nothing to do with us moving forward. It was our message back in the spring when we said, ‘Hey, recognize the history, but break off the rearview mirror.'”

Sunday’s game is just one of 16 for Pettine and the Browns and winning it won’t guarantee them anything other than a couple of days of optimism about bright days to come, but that’s not such a bad thing for a team that’s spent so much time under dark clouds of late.

12 responses to “Pettine on Browns’ history against Steelers: Recognize it, but break off rearview mirror

  1. The only people who don’t think Browns/Steelers aren’t still a rivalry didn’t know it was a rivalry to begin with because they don’t follow either team. The score board means very little (Steelers have lost to such hall of fame Browns QB’s as Brady Quinn and Brandon Weeden). The rivalry right now comes from both teams attempting to play “who will put out the other teams QB longer” every year.

    Pretty sure Big Ben, Hoyer and their offensive lines aren’t looking forward to Sunday at all.

  2. After watching the Steelers preseason, I think the Browns have a real chance to win. but I imagine the Steeelers will do just enough to ensure they aren’t completely embarrassed in the opener. IMO it’s going to be a long season for both these teams.

  3. The Browns continue to grasp for straws, how many coaches and how many QB’s and how may questions to Jim Brown and lets bring in an NBA player to fire up the team. Now lets break off the mirror.

  4. The Steelers need to run the ball (set up by the pass) and stop Cleveland from running the ball.

    I know it is cliche, but much more so than ever.

    Only the Cleveland tight end is a threat in the passing game, so they are going to have to run the ball to stay out of third and long.

    Munchack coaching is the difference

    Pittsburgh 34 Cleveland 7

  5. That rear-view mirror that won’t break will be the steelers lbs in the back seat hovering down on Hoyer and Johnny bust for another long miserable day for the browns.

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