The Pittsburgh Steelers are fresh off their bye week and are fresh and ready to go just in time for the stretch run.
Right now they're 7-3 and are in a pretty good spot in the AFC, but they have some glaring issues that need to be cleaned up if they want to make a serious run at getting back to the Super Bowl.
Here's a list of problems head coach Mike Tomlin was sure to have focused on during the bye week.
Mike Wallace is the obvious No. 1 receiver and with Antonio Brown and Emmanuel Sanders blossoming right before our eyes; it’s now time for Hines Ward to start taking a back seat.
He’s still one of the toughest players in the NFL, but the speed and skills those three receivers possess make his move to the back of the line a necessary evil.
As a non-biased observer of Ben Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh Steelers, it absolutely infuriates me when I watch Big Ben continually hold onto the ball longer than he should.
He does what he does to extend plays and that makes him one of the best in the league, but he does it way too much and it has cost the Steelers possessions, points and games.
It’s good to be able to extend plays and move the ball, but he needs to also understand that getting rid of the ball is sometimes the smarter play.
The Steelers have the 17th-ranked rushing attack right now and Rashard Mendenhall and Isaac Redman both average 3.8 yards per carry.
Some of this has to do with the fact the NFL is transitioning to an aerial show, but this is still Steeler Country, which is known for a hard-nosed mentality and blue-collar way of life—one of the reasons the run game has been so important in the past.
Making a concerted effort to getting back to that and improving on this ground game is going to be key in making a deep run come playoff time.
The Pittsburgh Steelers normally have a good offensive line, but this year has been a bit of a struggle.
Just this week, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported that left guard Chris Kemoeatu is being demoted in favor of Doug Legursky.
We’ll have to see if this move can help solidifies the O-line as this team heads down the stretch.
The Pittsburgh Steelers are tied with three other teams for the worst give/take differential in the league with a minus-10.
It’s well known the biggest stat that decides NFL games is the turnover ratio.
There’s simply no way the Steelers get back to the Super Bowl unless they fix this issue, and it starts with the defense, not the offense.
The Steelers defense only has six takeaways this season and two of those are fumble recoveries.
Shaun Suisham is second to last in the league with a 76.2 field goal percentage, including 4-of-7 from 40 to 49 yards.
Now that the days are getting colder and the field conditions are getting worse, the kicking game becomes ever-so important in close games.
He needs to shore up the kicking game or that could cost the team in the playoffs.
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Brian can also be found at Out of My League, where he compiles fantasy football rankings each week.