4 Steelers with daunting matchups against the Browns this week

Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb (24). Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
Cleveland Browns running back Nick Chubb (24). Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports /
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Cleveland Browns defensive end Myles Garrett (95). Mandatory Credit: Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports /

Chukwuma Okorafor vs. Myles Garrett

Myles Garrett doesn’t exclusively play left defensive end for the Browns, but I have a feeling they are going to try to exploit this matchup on Sunday night. Now that Olivier Vernon has landed on IR with a ruptured Achilles that he suffered last week, there may be more incentive to keep Garrett matched up against Chukwuma Okorafor in the Wild Card game.

Unlike the gritty matchup between Stephon Tuitt and Wyatt Teller, this one could get lopsided, as Garrett versus Okorafor is hardly a fair fight. According to PFF, the Steelers right tackle graded out as the 72nd best offensive tackle this year out of 83 qualifying players. Considering there are only 64 starting tackles in the NFL, this is not where we would like him to be.

On the other hand, Garrett earned the 4th-highest grade among edge defenders this year (89.5) and was recently named as a first-team All-Pro for the 2020 season. Garrett earned just 1 sack and 1 quarterback hit in 2 games against the Steelers this year, so Pittsburgh’s tackles really held their own. However, if Okorafor struggles early and often, it could be hard for the Steelers to find success on offense against the Browns.