Nov 28, 2013; Baltimore, MD, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Heath Miller (83) gets tackled by Baltimore Ravens safety James Ihedigbo (32) and linebacker Daryl Smith (51) during a NFL football game on Thanksgiving at M&T Bank Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports
This division will be the overall most competitive divisional race of the year. There isn’t a lot of separation among these four teams, especially at the top. The Steelers and Bengals are so close to each other, I honestly could flip a coin and be fine with whoever came out on top. But I am going to give the slight edge to Pittsburgh, because of their quarterback. I love Big Ben, specifically at the end of a game. If I need one quarterback to give me a game-winning drive, the only one I’m taking over Roethlisberger is Tom Brady. That’s how highly I think of Ben.
Then in Cincinnati, we have Andy Dalton, who just received a shiny new contract. In my mind, as long as Dalton is there, the Bengals will never make a deep playoff run. He is simply an average starting quarterback, who is helped out tremendously by A.J. Green, and a stout defense. Ultimately, I’m giving the Steelers the edge.
As for Cleveland and Baltimore, I see them in the same boat. Both have good defenses, with big question marks on offense. The Ravens are stuck with Joe Flacco, who may not have a running game, and his receiving corps is depleted. I am not expecting a good year from them. And if the Browns decide to start Johnny Manziel right out of the gate, I might take off a win or two. I like Manziel, but he needs to learn behind Brian Hoyer first. Hoyer is capable of winning ballgames at the helm, as he proved last season.