5 Early Predictions for the Pittsburgh Steelers’ 2014 Season

Pittsburgh Steelers: 5 Early Predictions for the 2014 Season

Le'Veon Bell
Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

It's hard to believe the Pittsburgh Steelers haven't qualified for postseason play since 2011. Will they finally get over the hump and back into the tournament in 2014? Here are five early predictions for their season.

5. Rookie Class Will Disappoint

Ryan Shazier
Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

5. Rookie Class Will Disappoint

Ryan Shazier
Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports

The Steelers' 2014 draft class has boom or bust written all over it. Their choices, most notably in the first four rounds, were high-upside, high-downside prospects. I'm not going to speak on the career arc of the class, but I'm not expecting Pittsburgh to get much from its rookies this fall.

4. Le'Veon Bell Will Surpass 1,200 Yards Rushing

Le'Veon Bell
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

4. Le'Veon Bell Will Surpass 1,200 Yards Rushing

Le'Veon Bell
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

While this year's rookies will struggle, a rookie from 2013 will find his stride. Running back Le'Veon Bell should benefit from the return of center Maurkice Pouncey. Bell only averaged 3.5 yards per carry last season, but showed glimpses of a more productive runner with better blocking. He'll surpass 1,200 rushing yards as a sophomore.

3. Ike Taylor Will Lose Starting Job

Ike Taylor
Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

3. Ike Taylor Will Lose Starting Job

Ike Taylor
Mitch Stringer-USA TODAY Sports

In 2013, cornerback Ike Taylor was the only defender in the entire NFL to give up over 1,000 yards in coverage. He enters 2014 on a short leash. It's hard to believe that Taylor, who is 34 years old, will return to form at this stage of his career. Although Pittsburgh isn't equipped with much depth at the spot, Taylor won't last the season's entirety.

2. Lawrence Timmons Will Finish Top 5 in Tackles

Lawrence Timmons
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

2. Lawrence Timmons Will Finish Top 5 in Tackles

Lawrence Timmons
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The aforementioned struggles of the rookie class will include first-round pick Ryan Shazier. The Ohio State product will make some impressive plays, but will also get consistently washed away defending the run. Thus, veteran Lawrence Timmons will have to elevate his game to clean up Shazier's shortcomings. Timmons will record a career high in tackles, finishing about fifth in the NFL.

1. Steelers Will, Once Again, Finish .500

Mike Tomlin
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

1. Steelers Will, Once Again, Finish .500

Mike Tomlin
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

After back-to-back 8-8 campaigns, the Steelers are desperate to record a winning season and get back to the playoffs in 2014. I just don't see them being better than the Bengals or Ravens in the AFC North, though. Another .500 finish will, once again, ensure that Mike Tomlin's club watches the postseason from the couch.


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  • The Truth

    Honestly. Ok. I predict you have absolutely no idea what your talking about.
    They have doubled Pittsburghs odds [for the better] to win the ARC in the last two weeks.
    Bengals? Dalton? Lol.
    You know nothing son.
    Find a new line of work.