The Pittsburgh Steelers faced off against the Buffalo Bills for their second preseason game of the season at Heinz Field on Saturday evening. The preseason opener against the Giants left much to be desired for but had quite a few bright spots for fans (and coaches) to take away. The expectations for the contest against the Bills would be about improvement and any clearer signs of who should move on past the first round of cuts.
The Steelers failed to score an offensive touchdown against the Giants. Heck, the Steelers failed to accomplish quite a bit on offense for the majority of the game. The team made up for that in the first half against the Bills by scoring a quick strike early in the first and following up with solid no-huddle drive later minutes later.
Steelers franchise quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger, cemented even further that he is the one that makes this offense tick. By the time his short evening was over, Big Ben threw for 8-11, 128yds, 2 TD’s, and a 150.8 QB rating. Ben ran the no-huddle for the majority of his time in the game. Funny what the no-huddle does with his production.
On the second offensive play from scrimmage for the Steelers, Ben threw a strike to Steelers wide out Antonio Brown that resulted in Brown running for a 76 yard TD. Brown was in great position and made a move that had him off to the races. A certain angle replay shows that once Brown caught the ball, Roethlisberger raised his arms up in the air because he knew that Brown was gone.
The 1st team offense followed that quick strike with a 10 play drive resulting in another Roethisberger TD pass after the offense was gifted great field position from rookie LB Ryan Shazier’s interception. Ben ran the no-huddle during this scoring drive and hit Markus Wheaton for a 16 yard TD pass. Beautiful. Were the 1st team to stay in for the entire game, Ben could have easily carved up the Bills defense for 300+ yards and a couple more scores.
The running game continues to struggle going eight rushes for only 11 yards. Huddle or no huddle, the Steelers will need to figure out how they are going to get the running game going. Period.
The Steelers are committed to getting Dri Archer involved in this offense. He’s accumulated 40+ yards in each game this preseason. I’m sure the formula the coaches have on the white board in the locker room goes like this. Keep giving football to Archer = Eventually you’ll get a huge play.
Out of everything that happened on Saturday, there one thing for certain – 1st team needs to stay healthy or good night Gladys. The backup QB’s are awful – if Landry Jones makes this team I think I’ll jump off the Clemente Bridge. The 2nd team offensive line is a train wreck. RB LeGarrette Blount continues to struggle.
The 1st team and the rookies (on defense) took a large step in the right direction on Saturday. The Steelers have a short turnaround this upcoming week with a game on Thursday against the Eagles.