Why Pittsburgh Steelers Are Just Getting Primed for Strong Postseason Push

Joseph BrunoCorrespondent INovember 15, 2011

CINCINNATI, OH - NOVEMBER 13:  Coach Mike Tomlin of the Pittsburgh Steelers salutes the fans after a win over the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on November 13, 2011 in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Steelers won 24-17.  (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)
Grant Halverson/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers are 7-3 after 10 weeks and going into their bye leading the AFC North over the Baltimore Ravens and Cincinnati Bengals.

Despite being swept by the Ravens, Pittsburgh can still win the division because Baltimore thought that they had already won the trophy because they had beaten the Steelers in the regular season.

I wonder why John Harbaugh did not get a Gatorade bath after the game against the Seahawks.

The Steelers did not panic after being destroyed by the Ravens in Week 1, after the offensive line and defense looked horrendous in Week 4 against the Texans and after being beaten by a last-second touchdown pass by Joe Flacco in Week 9.

After every loss, the Steelers have responded with at least two wins and the only thing stopping them in Week 11 is the bye.

Even though the offensive line did not have its game against the Bengals, they have done a pretty good job since the debacle that was the first four weeks of the season.

The front office decided that having Ben Roethlisberger hit on every single play in every single game was probably not conducive to another playoff run and re-signed Max Starks after the loss to the Texans.

Roethlisberger has been nothing short of spectacular this season, especially given the terrible state of the offensive line to start the year.

Since throwing three interceptions against the Ravens in Week 1, Big Ben has not thrown more than one in a game and already has 2,877 yards passing on the season.

CINCINNATI, OH - NOVEMBER 13: Antonio Brown #84 of the Pittsburgh Steelers celebrates after making a first down reception against the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on November 13, 2011 in Cincinnati, Ohio. The Steelers won 24-17. (Photo by Joe
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Before being hurt with a knee injury, Emmanuel Sanders had emerged in the offense, and in his absence, Antonio Brown has been on a tear.

Mike Wallace puts fear into every defense with his blazing speed and with the offensive line doing better, Heath Miller has been able to become a part of the offense instead of blocking every play.

Do not count out Hines Ward helping this offense the rest of the season and with Jerricho Cotchery becoming more involved, the passing game is as potent as ever.

This is all with the Steelers getting basically nothing from the rushing game which just contributed two touchdowns from Rashard Mendenhall against the Bengals.

The Steelers may not ever get that dominant rushing attack back this season, however, if Rashard Mendenhall, Isaac Redman and Mewelde Moore can just provide any sort of balance then the offense could be unstoppable.

On the defensive side of the ball, the Steelers need Troy Polamalu to show up and start acting like the great player we all know he is.

Polamalu can be a disruptive force and his nonexistence has led to the Steelers defense being ranked dead last in takeaways.

Injuries have also hit the defense hard this year with James Harrison, James Farrior and LaMarr Woodley all missing time with various injuries.

Harrison came back with a vengeance against the Ravens with three sacks and a forced fumble and Farrior just came back against the Bengals.

Woodley may still miss the next two weeks with his hamstring injury, however, he is definitely going to be back soon enough and pick up where he left off terrorizing quarterbacks.

After being declared too old at the beginning of the season, the Steelers defense has greatly improved and especially against the run.

The pass defense has only allowed one 300-yard passer the entire season and that was against Joe Flacco and the Ravens in Week 9.

Giving up a 92-yard touchdown drive to the Ravens to let them win the game was disheartening, however, that did not end the season by any stretch of the imagination.

This team has not even come close to playing to their full potential yet and they still sit tied with the Texans for the best record in the AFC at 7-3.

The Steelers will be in the playoffs whether as a division winner or as a wild card and they will end the season as Super Bowl champions.