Pittsburgh Steelers: 10 Reasons They Will Get Blown out in the Next Round

Brian DiTullioSenior Writer IJanuary 16, 2011

Pittsburgh Steelers: 10 Reasons They Will Get Blown out in the Next Round

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    The Pittsburgh Steelers came out the winners in the battle against the Baltimore Ravens, but now they will have barely a week's rest before going on to their next opponent.

    The game versus the Ravens was brutal, especially in the first half, and the question now is, can the Steelers get themselves healthy enough to take on their next opponent.

    As good as the Steelers defense is, there's a lot of reasons to think the Steelers playoff run will end with next week's game, especially if it's against the Patriots.

    While none of these reasons may prove to be true, here are 10 reasons the Steelers may not have come out winners against the Ravens.

10. The Beat Up Defense

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    There was a lot of hard-hitting in last week's game. Even James Harrison had to leave for a few plays.

    The Steelers live and die by how well their defense plays. While next week's game would be hard-pressed to be as brutal as the Ravens game, these guys aren't exactly going to be fresh.

9. Chris Kemoeatu

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    Chris Kemoeatu specialized in diving head-first into piles after the play ended and drawing penalties.

    That's called playing stupid, and Kemoeatu will just keep holding the Steelers offense back when little mistakes like his will lose a playoff game.

8. Flozell Adams

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    Flozell Adams is pretty bad and slow even when he's healthy. He left Saturday's game due to an unspecified illness, but did it really matter?

    Adams' departure improved the Dallas line, so that pretty much tells you all you need to know about him.

    Adams just can't keep up with the speed of the game, and it was one of the few bad personnel moves the Steelers have made when they brought him in.

7. Bryant McFadden

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    The secondary is only as good as its weakest link, and Bryant McFadden is that weakest link. He tends to get beat in man-to-man coverage, he only has two picks, and at age 29, he's not going to get any faster.

6. Byron Leftwich

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    With the beating Ben Roethlisberger took last week, Steelers fans everywhere better hope he stays healthy because Byron Leftwich can not make the same plays Roethlisberger makes.

    Roethlisberger takes the weakness of the offensive line and makes lemonade out of lemons. In a playoff situation, Leftwich would have to be perfect coming in for an injured Roethlisberger, or the beatdown would commence.

5. Offensive Schemes

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    With the exception of the Ravens game this week, and the Browns game in Week 17, the Steelers often are relying on their kicker.

    Shaun Suisham isn't a bad kicker, but if the other team is trying to score touchdowns and the Steelers are settling for field goals, the outcome won't be good for Pittsburgh.

4. The Offensive Line

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    Certain players already have been highlighted, but with the exception of Maurkice Pouncey, there's no one on that line any Steeler fan should feel comfortable with.

    If that line performs as badly as it did in the first half of the Ravens game, it's going to be either a very long day for the Steelers, or a very short day for Roethlisberger.

3. Special Teams

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    Special teams hasn't been the bane of the team like it has in years past, but the Steelers still have some work to do in that area.

    As already has been proven in the postseason, a game can turn real fast on a really good special teams play.

    The Steelers have to be careful about giving up a big return, or they set up short-yardage drives that won't end well.

2. Bruce Arians

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    Bruce Arians was fired from the Cleveland Browns for not being able to put a competent offense on the field.

    In Pittsburgh, he some of the best talent in the game at every major position, yet the Steelers offense is middle-of-the-road when it comes to being ranked in the major categories.

    Rashard Mendenhall should be a 2,000-yard rusher, but he isn't; Ben Roethlisberger should've had 5,000 yards passing and more than 30 touchdowns, but he doesn't.

    The Steelers seemed poised to fire Arians after the 2009 campaign, but Roethlisberger stuck up for him and he got to stay.

    The numbers speak for themselves, and if the Steelers can't score, it becomes a lot easier to get blown out.

1. The Baltimore Ravens

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    The Ravens fought the Steelers pretty good in the first half, but a third quarter meltdown by Joe Flacco and the Ravens offense allowed the Steelers back into the game.

    While all credit must be given to the Steelers for coming back and winning, you can't hope for two meltdowns two weeks in a row.

    The Steelers now will be beat up instead of fresh, and the other team will be looking at what the Ravens did in the first half of Saturday's game and saying, "We need to do that."