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The 4-0 Steelers will host the red hot Browns on Sunday at Heinz Field, who are coming to Pittsburgh with a 4-1 record for the first time since 1994. The high expectations for this talented Browns team have been met in Cleveland thus far and it certainly will be the toughest team that the Steelers have faced this year compared to their four prior opponents, who have a combined record of 3-15-1 this year.
"This week we are faced with a significant challenge, one that we are excited about because we love being in the kitchen," Tomlin said today during his weekly press conference. "AFC North ball is in the kitchen. It's hot in the North and we have an AFC North home game against the Cleveland Browns, a team that has won four in a row.
"We have a lot of respect for them and their journey and where they are in their journey. We're excited about the challenge that a week like this presents for us, how we manage it, prepare, how we are focused and ultimately how we play."
Tomlin was asked about the brawl that broke out between the two teams last year in Cleveland that stemmed from Myles Garrett ripping Mason Rudolph's helmet off and hitting him over the head with it. And he pretty much stated that the storyline doesn't add any extra motivation for them and that was a 2019 issue and they are on to 2020.
"There really is no message," Tomlin said. "My day-to-day existence kind of relays that message. There is a lot on the table in reference to this game in terms of stakes. They are a 4-1 team. We're trying to remain undefeated. We're not looking for that low-hanging fruit or reality TV storylines.
"This is a big game here in 2020."