3 keys to success for the Steelers defense vs. Browns tonight

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Following an uncomfortably lopsided loss at home to the San Francisco 49ers to begin the season, the Pittsburgh Steelers close Week 2 on Monday Night Football in front of the nation against the Cleveland Browns. The Browns, coming off a surprisingly dominant victory over the Cincinnati Bengals, have considerable momentum.

Much of the Browns' Week 1 performance can be credited to the defense, but that's not to say the Browns don't have firepower on the offensive side of the ball. Nick Chubb is arguably the best running back in all of football, Deshaun Watson is a lethal quarterback even if he doesn't return to his 2019 form, the offensive line is one of the more respected units in the league, and Amari Cooper, Donovan Peoples-Jones and David Njoku are a dynamic pass-catching trio.

Speaking of Cooper, he left practice Saturday with a groin injury and his status for Monday is up in the air. Right tackle Jack Conklin is the only other notable injury on the offensive side of the ball, as he is out for the season as a result of the torn ACL he suffered in Week 1.

As for the Steelers, the loss of Cam Heyward for at least the next eight weeks is a significant hurdle for Pittsburgh to overcome early in the season. Doubly so with Chubb and the Browns' dangerous rushing attack on the schedule this week.

While Pittsburgh's offense struggles with its identity (again...), it's up to the defense to hold things together, just as they have in years past.

With Week 1 in the rearview, how the Steelers' defense responds in Week 2 against Cleveland is a huge factor in whether the Steelers right the ship through an early storm or continue to take on more water. Here are three keys for the defensive unit to get back on track against their AFC North rivals on Monday night.