AFC North Predictions


By Andy Benoit,


1. Pittsburgh Steelers

They return essentially the same defense that ranked No. 1 last year, plus they have several promising new weapons on offense.

2. Cleveland Browns

The trendiest pick in football this season. A division title is within reach, but what happens if Jamal Lewis or one of the defensive backs goes down?

3. Cincinnati Bengals

It’s nothing but chaos here. There’s enough talent for a playoff run, but that hasn’t seemed to matter the past two seasons.

4. Baltimore Ravens

Too much transition taking place for a team with this kind of quarterback situation.

Best Offseason Move

The Bengals calling Chad Johnson’s bluff. Perhaps they would have been better off trading the disenchanted star, but wasn’t it nice to see them not give any power to Ocho Cinco?

Worst Offseason Move

The Steelers letting Alan Faneca walk away.

Biggest Question

Are the Browns ready to capitalize on their ’07 success and finally take a quantum leap into the postseason?

Quick Hits

Team Bests

Passing Game 1 Bengals, 2 Browns, 3 Steelers, 4 Ravens

Running Game 1 Steelers, 2 Browns, 3 Ravens, 4 Bengals

Offensive Line 1 Browns, 2 Bengals, 3 Steelers, 4 Ravens

Pass Rush 1 Steelers, 2 Ravens, 3 Browns, 4 Bengals

Run Defense 1 Steelers, 2 Ravens, 3 Browns, 4 Bengals

Pass Defense 1 Ravens, 2 Steelers, 3 Browns, 4 Bengals

Special Teams 1 Browns, 2 Ravens, 3 Steelers, 4 Bengals

Coaching Staff 1 Steelers, 2 Browns, 3 Bengals, 4 Ravens

Front Office 1 Browns, 2 Ravens, 3 Steelers, 4 Bengals

Home Field Advantage 1 Steelers, 2 Browns, 3 Ravens, 4 Bengals

Player Bests

Pure Athlete Josh Cribbs, Browns

Big Play Threat Ed Reed, Ravens

Gets Most out of Talent Hank Fraley, Browns

Gets Least out of Talent Ahmad Brooks, Bengals

Breakout Prospects Santonio Holmes, Steelers

LaMarr Woodley, Steelers

Ben Grubbs, Ravens

Breakdown Prospects Willie Anderson, Bengals

Joe Jurevicius, Browns

Corey Ivy, Ravens

Best Leader Ray Lewis, Ravens

Unsung Hero Reggie Kelly, Bengals

Impact Veteran Acquisition Corey Williams, Browns

Impact Rookie Keith Rivers, Bengals



QB Carson Palmer, Bengals

RB Willie Parker, Steelers

FB LeRon McClain, Ravens

WR Chad Johnson, Bengals

WR Braylon Edwards, Browns

TE Kellen Winslow, Browns

LT Joe Thomas, Browns

LG Eric Steinbach, Browns

C Jason Brown, Ravens

RG Kendall Simmons, Steelers

RT Willie Colon, Steelers


DE Corey Williams, Browns

NT Casey Hampton, Steelers

DE Haloti Ngata, Ravens

OLB Terrell Suggs, Ravens

ILB Ray Lewis, Ravens

ILB Bart Scott, Ravens

OLB Kamerion Wimbley, Browns

CB Chris McAlister, Ravens

FS Ed Reed, Ravens

SS Troy Polamalu, Steelers

CB Leon Hall, Bengals


K Phil Dawson, Browns

P Daniel Sepulveda, Steelers

RS Joshua Cribbs, Browns

ST Brendon Ayanbadejo, Ravens

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