Size matters in Steelers-Eagles battle

The size and physicalness of the Steelers' receivers will be a problem for the Eagles' smaller defensive backs.

Updated: November 5, 2004, 1:09 AM ET
By Ron Jaworski | ESPN Insider
Editor's Note: ESPN analyst Ron Jaworski opens up the film vault to analyze the matchup between the Philadelphia Eagles' defensive backs and the Pittsburgh Steelers' receivers in advance of this weekend's game.

This will be an intriguing matchup between the Eagles' excellent defensive unit and the Steelers' superb offense. While there are several aspects of this game that are important, I prefer to focus on the matchup between the Pittsburgh receivers and the Philadelphia defensive backs.

Hines Ward (86) and Plaxico Burress' size will be a problem for the Eagles DBs.
The Steelers' main two receivers have such a large size advantage over the Eagles DBs. WRs Plaxico Burress and Hines Ward are 6-foot-5 and 6-0, respectively, and they are going to matchup at times with 5-10 cornerbacks Lito Sheppard and Sheldon Brown.

Eagles defensive coordinator Jim Johnson has done a terrific job giving his secondary help and I'm sure that will continue this week. They play well as a group and also communicate very well. The linebackers do a great job of taking certain routes away and will attempt to play Burress, Antwaan Randle El and Ward physically when they come across the middle.

Ron Jaworski

NFL analyst / writer
Ron Jaworski is one of the most popular and knowledgeable analysts covering the NFL today. Since joining ESPN in 1990, the former standout NFL quarterback has covered the league from virtually every angle -- sideline reporter, game-site reporter, host and both studio and game analyst. From 2007-11, Jaworski occupied one of the most coveted positions in sports as a Monday Night Football analyst.