PITTSBURGH – The Cleveland Browns have joined the Detroit Lions as the only 0-16 teams in NFL history.
The Browns trailed the Pittsburgh Steelers 7-0 after the first quarter. The Steelers outgained Cleveland 145 to minus-16 in the first 15 minutes despite sitting stars Ben Roethlisberger and Le’Veon Bell.
The Pittsburgh Steelers are giving quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, running back Le’Veon Bell and other starters the day off against the winless Browns despite having a shot at home-field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs.
Roethlisberger and Bell were joined on the sidelines by offensive linemen David DeCastro and Maurkice Pouncey and defensive end Cam Heyward. All are healthy but inactive for Pittsburgh.
The Steelers have already clinched a first-round bye. To earn home-field advantage, they need to beat Cleveland and have New England lose to the New York Jets.
Landry Jones will start in place of Roethlisberger with Stevan Ridley taking Bell’s spot in the backfield.
Quarterback Nick Foles is active for Philadelphia even though the Eagles have clinched the home field in the NFC.
But running back Jay Ajayi is inactive after coach Doug Pederson said during the week he planned to play the starters for at least part of the game against the Dallas Cowboys, the defending NFC East champs who were eliminated from playoff contention last week.