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Diontae Johnson: No room on bandwagon 'once' Steelers beat Chiefs in playoffs

1/14/2022 3:00:48 PM
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Add wide receiver Diontae Johnson to the list of Pittsburgh Steelers players unhappy with the perceived lack of respect the team is getting heading into the AFC playoffs against the Kansas City Chiefs, Joe Rutter of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports.

But while quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has led the charge by playfully using it as a motivational tool, which defensive captain Cameron Heyward has echoed, Johnson took a more direct approach Thursday.

“Once we win, don’t try to hop back on the bandwagon,” Johnson said. “Remember all that stuff you’re saying now. I’m just going to leave it at that.”

The Steelers enter the playoffs as the No. 7 seed and will play the second-seeded Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium on Sunday night in the wild-card round. Three weeks ago, the Steelers visited the same venue and fell behind by 23 points in the first half en route to a 36-10 loss to the Chiefs.

“That’s what they expect,” Johnson said. “They don’t expect us to come back with a better plan. I like being in this situation.”

Oddsmakers have installed the Chiefs, who have won nine of their past 10 games, as a two-touchdown favorite. The Steelers won three of their final four games — the only loss in that span coming to the Chiefs — to make the playoffs as the conference’s final seed.

Johnson doesn’t expect the game to unfold the way it did when the teams met Dec. 26.

“We have good gameplan this week, and I’m looking forward to it,” he said. “We owe them at the end of the day. We went down there and didn’t play our best. Everybody is counting us out. I like being in this position.”

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