Usually Pittsburgh stops the run. Harrison is out forcing Lawrence Timmons to move to the outside and James Farrior may not play. Hampton is still not at 100 percent and Aaron Smith is on IR. New England will be able to run it on Pittsburgh due to the Steelers numerous adjustments on the front 7. Here will be 3 Key’s to the Game
Key #1 Tom Brady VS Steelers Secondary
New England will have success running the football so it will really come down to how the Patriots operate VS the Steelers pass defense. Pittsburgh has worked on man coverage and unleashing harder hits in practice.
Key #2 Nate Soldier VS Lamarr Woodley
The one on one battles between rookie right tackle Nate Soldier and 3-4 left outside linebacker Lamarr Woodley will be key. Woodley had 3 sacks against a weak Cardinals offensive line. Depsite not having Harrison to play next to Woodley is going up against a rookie offensive tackle.
Key #3 Time of Possession
New England needs to sustain long drives to keep Pittsburgh’s offense off the field.