After a 0-4 start, the Pittsburgh Steelers decided to shake things up at their weakest position on the team, the offensive line. During their Week 5 bye, the Steelers traded a conditional draft pick to the Arizona Cardinals for offensive tackle Levi Brown. This was in response to the inconsistent play of second-year left tackle Mike Adams.
Now headed into Week 6, the left side of Pittsburgh’s offensive line could look totally different. Chances are that Adams will be benched and replaced by either Brown or Kelvin Beachum. If Brown is able to win over the trust of the Steelers’ coaching staff, he will more than likely start at left tackle.
As for the position of left guard, things are just as uncertain at this point in time. Pittsburgh’s starting left guard Ramon Foster is day-to-day with a pectoral sprain that was suffered in Week 3 against the Chicago Bears, and was aggravated against the Minnesota Vikings in Week 4. If Foster is unable to go, then the versatile Beachum could step into the void.
Another possible scenario is that Brown won’t be up to speed on the Steelers’ playbook and Beachum could play left tackle, and Guy Whimper could man the left guard spot, assuming that Foster isn’t healthy enough to assume the position.
Looking at how abysmal Pittsburgh’s offensive line has been thus far into the season, one can say that things can’t get any worse. The Steelers are second-to-last in the NFL in rushing, averaging 58.0 yards per game. Furthermore, they are tied in the league for surrendering the fifth most sacks with 15. However, things just might get more dreadful for the offensive front.
In Week 6, Pittsburgh will face one of the NFL’s best defenses in the New York Jets. Through the first five weeks, the Jets are second in the league in stopping the run (76.2 ypg) and are tied for fifth with 16 sacks.
With the sudden changes along the Steelers’ offensive line and the uncertainty of knowing who will play where, suspicion will definitely creep into the minds of many of the Steeler faithful. Of course, these changes are being made to improve the team’s chances for bouncing back from a 0-4 start, but whether that will actually happen against the Jets might be asking a bit too much.
Clyde A. Speller is an NFL writer for RantSports.com. Follow him on Twitter @ClydeASpeller, or add him to your network on Google+