The Pittsburgh Steelers have been known as a franchise that has stifling, aggressive defenses that do not back down from anything. They also have been known to have offenses that explode out of the gate to start a game. Even if the offense ran the ball, it was with power. Unfortunately, the 2013 Steelers are nothing like the teams of old.
The offensive play calling has been criticized by many as being too soft, which is the complete opposite of what Steeler Nation wants to see. Offensive coordinator Toddy Haley is taking a lot of heat from the fans and the media, but it should not matter to him because his job is safe… for now. Pittsburgh is not an organization that fires coordinators midseason and they certainly are not going to start now, even if the team is 0-4.
The Steelers’ attempt to get a run game going early in the ball game is costing them greatly. Obviously, establishing the run is huge in the NFL. Not to mention, it is particularly important for Pittsburgh considering they rank towards the very bottom of the league in rushing yards per game (58). With that being said, coming out firing on all cylinders is far more important than anything else. Clearly, the way for the Steelers to do that is through the air.
Ben Roethlisberger threw for 383 yards and one touchdown in Sunday’s loss against the Minnesota Vikings. Three players had at least 70 yards receiving, including wide receiver Jerricho Cotchery who hauled in five receptions for 103 yards. The team ranks in the top 10 in the league in passing yards per game. That means passing to set up the run is definitely something that must be done early in the contest.
Obviously, the defense deserves some blame for the loss. An offense that puts up 27 points should leave the gridiron victorious. However, there is no question the play calling on offense is something that must be addressed during the bye week.