The Pittsburgh Steelers have a hefty game ahead of them. The 2-5 Steelers will travel to Foxborough to face the 6-2 New England Patriots.
The Steelers are coming off a another loss: the Steelers were beaten by the Oakland Raiders 21-18 last Sunday. The Steelers looked lousy in their efforts against Oakland. The Steelers’ defense managed to give up a 93-yard touchdown run by Terrell Pryor to start the game. From that point on the Steelers were never able to recover. Despite a late game comeback, the Steelers couldn’t rebound from a slow first half start.
The quarterback issues won’t stop there. The Patriots of course have Tom Brady who is always a challenge. Brady hasn’t been putting up “Brady like numbers” but the Patriots are still finding ways to win games despite the lack of talent, something the Steelers haven’t been able to accomplish.
“To me, he’s the best quarterback in the league and he’s done it for a long time,” said Ben Roethlisberger. “That’s no disrespect to some of these other guys that are doing some amazing things in the NFL right now. But to me, it’s about wins and championships and he’s got more championships than anybody.”
So can the Steelers hang with the Brady bunch come Sunday?
Slim chance. The Patriots have never been an easy win for the Steelers and this Steelers team isn’t capable of playing with big dogs like Tom Brady. The two Steeler wins of this season came against the New York Jets, who have a rookie starting quarterback, and the Baltimore Ravens, who aren’t the same as the Super Bowl team of last season.
The Steelers’ offense looked to be finding some kind of groove during the two weeks they managed to string together two consecutive wins. The Steelers were having trouble finishing drives while in the red zone but were moving the ball down the field. The running game has found life ever since rookie running back Le’Veon Bell started handling the carries in the backfield.
However, the team suffered a set back against Oakland as the Steelers offense couldn’t get anything going until late in the game and by that time it was too late.
Roethlisberger has two very talented receivers surrounding him. Antonio Brown and Emmanuel Sanders were both expected to do big things this season. Brown was supposed to pick up the slack after Mike Wallace left for Miami and Sanders was fought for during the offseason by Roethlisberger, who didn’t want the young receiver to go New England.
The two receivers haven’t really lived up to expectations thus far. Even though as a team the Steelers were struggling, Brown was making it a point to step up and make big plays. He’s had several good games including the one against Chicago were he was essentially the best player wearing the black and gold. However, Brown showed that he may not be as reliable as we once thought. He dropped several big time catches in the Steelers’ loss to Oakland.
Brown did however take responsibility for not making the necessary plays.
“I thought I could have done some things better to help us win,” said Brown. Brown reportedly spoke to his quarterback on the plane ride back to Pittsburgh from Oakland about his not-so-clutch performance.
“I hold myself to a higher standard,” Brown said. “These men around here hold me to a higher standard.”
A higher standard is what the entire Steelers team needs to hold. A 2-5 record traveling into Foxborough is not want the Steelers want to be facing. That’s the reality of it though, Roethlisberger has already coined this match-up as a “must win” situation. At this point, all the games the Steelers have left are must wins, that’s what happens when you start the season 0-4.
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