The Pittsburgh Steelers did not look great against the Tennessee Titans Sunday. The offense gained only 195 yards and averaged just 2.1 yards per carry on the ground in their 16-9 loss. In all, the offense simply looked dysfunctional.
While the defense played well, it didn’t exactly help the offense despite allowing only 229 total yards.
The Steelers finished with just one sack and no forced turnovers. These were not the results that they were hoping for after making it a point to increase their big plays on the defensive side of the ball this year.
As bad as things were, Mike Tomlin said in his press conference on Tuesday that the Steelers were “an explosive play or two” from having a different result, via Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
It may be hard to believe, but he is right.
Emmanuel Sanders just missed a deep pass from Ben Roethlisberger on the opening play of the game. Isaac Redman fumbled the ball on 3rd-and-inches on a play that could have set up a 1st-and-goal inside the 5-yard line.
Failed opportunities such as these were just part of the reason the Steelers lost their opener. There were too many underachieving playmakers who held the team back. They will need to raise their level of play in Week 2 if the Steelers are to compete against the Cincinnati Bengals.
Here are five playmakers who must shine against the Bengals.
Note: All stats from this article are from ESPN.com.