Around the league, there is always too much hype about a team’s identity. This team is run first, that team is run and gun, and all the talk is about different coaches and their systems. When it comes down to it, the best teams will beat you in anyway possible. There is no identity to winning, it is exposing the opponent’s weakness. In the Pittsburgh Steelers three-game win streak, they have shown that they can beat defenses at every level, and that coming towards the playoffs, this time has a strong, balanced offense.
Pittsburgh Steelers Balanced Offense Leading to Success
Week 11 at Cleveland Browns
The Steelers came off of a loss to the Cowboys to find the perfect opponent with the no win Browns. Pittsburgh took a play out of the Cowboys playbook and went on a run heavy rampage to control the clock, shorten the game and keep their defense off of the field. Le’Veon Bell ran 28 times for 146 yards with a touchdown. 16 of his carries came in the first as the Steelers took an early lead and grounded out a 24-9 victory. The Steelers dominated in time of possession, holding the ball for nearly 34 minutes, and jumped out to an early lead to put their defense in a better situation.
Week 12 at Indianapolis Colts
The Steelers likely game planned for Andrew Luck, but even without him, the playmakers of T.Y. Hilton and Donte Moncrief could give the idea that this would be a high scoring game. The Steelers were looking for shot plays downfield early on in the game. They completed four passes of 20 yards or more in the first half and finished with six explosive plays of 20 yards or more by the end of it. Antonio Brown got deep for three touchdowns, while Eli Rogers and Ladarius Green added in big catches over the middle. The Colts offense when playing from behind was doomed right off of the bat, but the Steelers were ready to go toe to toe in a high scoring affair.
Week 13 vs. New York Giants
In week 13, the Steelers again saw a weakness with the Giants defense. The outside cornerbacks were strong, but in the flats and middles, they wanted to test the linebackers and safeties and did so all game. Bell had seven targets and caught six of them while adding 29 carries. After opening up the flats, the team unleashed Ladarius Green, as he finished with a team-high 11 targets. He caught six of them and turned it into 110 yards with a touchdown. The Steelers again wound up controlling the ball for 34 minutes and showed the complete balance in beating three teams in every facet of the game.
Eli Rogers has been in and out, but the addition of Ladarius Green to the deep middle, after exposing defenses with the short flats by Bell, and the deep outsides with Antonio Brown proves that there is no identity for the Steelers offense. But, that’s just the way it should be.