Who’s Up Next For the Broncos?

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Dec 28, 2014; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown (84) runs after a catch to score a sixty-three yard touchdown against the Cincinnati Bengals during the fourth quarter at Heinz Field. The Steelers won 27-17. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Pittsburgh Steelers

The Broncos biggest threat to making a return trip to the AFC Championship game is the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Led by two-time Super Bowl winning quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, the Steelers escaped the wild AFC North as champs, reigning supreme over the Ravens and Bengals, both being playoff teams this season.

Pittsburgh not only owns their first divisional crown in the last four seasons, but own the number one ranked offense in all of the NFL. They’re certainly not your grandpa’s Steelers, as running back Le’Veon Bell and receiver Antonio Brown have quickly risen to elite level status.

Bell is a multipurpose back and he ended his fantastic sophomore season with 2,215 all-purpose yards, 854 of those are receiving yardage. Even more, he’s just as great a pass-blocker as he is runner and receiver.

On the outside sits a hungry, young group of wideouts that do much of the heavy lifting in the Steelers’ offense. The All-Pro Brown leads the way and that’s not the only thing he’s a leader in.

His 129 catches for 1,698 yards are both bests in the NFL. Brown has also converted the most first downs with 85, which really shows just how valuable he is to Roethlisberger and the Steelers’ offense.

Besides Brown and Bell, the rest of the offense is loaded with playmakers, including ol’ faithful tight end and chain mover, Heath Miller.

Defensively, Pittsburgh is up and down. They break more often than they bend, and they don’t force many turnovers. Still, they’re capable of making plays when they need to made the most, and have veteran leadership like Troy Polamalu, Lawrence Timmons and James Harrison there to help guide the defense.

The main problem that lay with the Steelers is that they’re the team the Broncos know the least about, as Denver has already played the Bengals and the Colts this season. That is a two-way street but it remains somewhat of a problem for the Broncos nonetheless.

If the Steelers find themselves in Denver in roughly two weeks, that’ll mean they’ve won five straight games. They’d be on a hot streak coming into Mile High, thus making Pittsburgh the Broncos biggest threat out of all three teams.

Verdict: It won’t be easy, but then again, it never is.