Pittsburgh Steelers Rumors: 5 Biggest Whispers Before Training Camp

The 5 Biggest Whispers Surrounding The Pittsburgh Steelers

Ben Roethlisberger
Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Steelers will enter the 2014 season hoping to end their two-season drought of missing the postseason. The Steelers look to be back on track after going 6-2 in their final eight games of the 2013 season. Pittsburgh will have a tough time yet again, as they contend with the Baltimore Ravens and Cincinnati Bengals for AFC North supremacy. Here are the five biggest rumors entering training camp.

5. Pass Coverage Will Continue To Struggle

Pittsburgh Steelers v Cleveland Browns
Getty Images

5. Pass Coverage Will Continue To Struggle

Pittsburgh Steelers v Cleveland Browns
Getty Images

The biggest cause for the Steelers' struggles at the beginning of last season was due to their pass coverage. The Steelers allowed seven pass plays of 50-plus yards, which led the league. Instead of curing the defensive backfield by addressing the position in the draft or free agency, the Steelers stood pat and will start 12-year veteran Ike Taylor for another season.

4. The Running Game Will Be Better

Cleveland Browns v Pittsburgh Steelers
Getty Images

4. The Running Game Will Be Better

Cleveland Browns v Pittsburgh Steelers
Getty Images

The Steelers have been extremely lethargic running the football over the past two seasons, which is why they have finished 8-8 in each of those seasons. Pittsburgh ranked 27th rushing the football last season. However, the team not only returns Le'Veon Bell for his second season, but signed free agent LeGarrette Blount to boost the rushing attack.

3. Generating More Pass Rush In Sub Packages

Pittsburgh Steelers-Cameron Heyward vs Bills
Getty Images

3. Generating More Pass Rush In Sub Packages

Pittsburgh Steelers-Cameron Heyward vs Bills
Getty Images

The Steelers were atrocious rushing the passer in 2013. The defense ranked 25th in the league with 34 sacks. The defense's struggles all go hand-in-hand. A large reason for all of the big plays allowed by the defensive backfield was due to the lack of pass rush from the front seven. The Steelers used five or more defensive backs 65 percent of the time last season.

2. Ben Roethlisberger Will Take Less Hits

Vance Walker, Kansas City Chiefs
Getty Images

2. Ben Roethlisberger Will Take Less Hits

Vance Walker, Kansas City Chiefs
Getty Images

Ben Roethlisberger took every offensive snap last season for the first time in his NFL career. He was sacked just seven times in the final seven contests. It's no wonder the Steelers went 5-2 in those games. Now add along the addition of Mike Munchak as the offensive line coach, and Roethlisberger should take even less of a beating in 2014.

1. The Steelers Are The Favorites To Win The AFC North

Pittsburgh Steelers v Cincinnati Bengals
Getty Images

1. The Steelers Are The Favorites To Win The AFC North

Pittsburgh Steelers v Cincinnati Bengals
Getty Images

The Steelers finished as one of the hottest teams in the NFL last season, and came within a few close calls of clinching a playoff berth despite a 0-4 start. Don't expect a slow start from one of the NFL's most consistent franchises this season; Pittsburgh should begin and end the season as the most complete team in the AFC North.


Around the Web