The Steelers game against the Browns was eerily like their preseason. They looked great and just when you think all the pieces have come together, they can’t do anything. I believe there will be some growing pains on defense, but we really have to develop a killer instinct on offense. It sure seems the players and coaches were pretty comfortable with a 24 point lead, and it showed. Here’s where they fell out around the league in the power rankings:
"They looked great on offense, but they certainly didn’t look like the Steelers on defense. They were gashed by the run. – Pete Prisco (CBS Sports, Ranked #11)"
To say they were gashed is an understatement. They allowed 6.1 ypc to the likes of Terrance West and Isaiah Crowell. Who are they you ask? Exactly.
"Antonio Brown picked up where he left off (mostly). Five catches, 116 yards and a touchdown seems routine for Brown. A judo kick to a punter’s face was new, though. – ESPN.com (Ranked #12)"
ESPN forgot to mention Le’Veon Bell being a complete beast in the game. 109 yards rushing and 88 yards receiving on 27 touches.
"The Steelers barely survived a Browns running attack that darn-near put up two bills on the ground — and that was without any read-option business from Johnny Manziel. Nope, this was straight Terrance West and Ben Tate. Wait, Terrance West and Ben Tate? Yep, and Isaiah Crowell, too. Up next: a trip to Baltimore. Perhaps that backfield (see: blurb just above) can serve as Pittsburgh’s panacea. – Elliott Harrison (NFL.com, Ranked #18)"
This is the only ranking in which the Steelers dropped after the win. I don’t think the Jets are better than the Steelers, and I guess we’ll find out tonight if the Ravens are.
"Le’Veon Bell looked healthier than he was at any point last season, and he made it clear quickly why the Steelers used on early-round pick on him. Although the offense picked up where they left off over the final eight games of 2013, the defense continued to show signs of decline as they almost allowed a major comeback. –Dan Schneier (FoxSports, Ranked #15)"
I heartily disagree the Steelers defense is in decline. In the last two years, the average age on defense has gone from 30.1 to 27.1. Three new starters on defense and 15 players on the defense have three years or less with the team. It is going to take a little time for Dick LeBeau to get these guys to play together.
"I like to refer to what happened with the Steelers Sunday as The Walking Dead arc — phenomenal start, mind-numbingly frustrating for a bit, then ultimately worth all the trouble. Fortunately for the Steelers, they were able to escape Hershel’s farm at the absolute last moment … er, I mean, to stop Brian Hoyer a couple of times. –Chris Burke (SI.com, Ranked #16)"
The Steelers did play like zombies after the half until midway in the fourth. However, as my great friend always says, a win is a win. Last year we were frustrated after the first game and we were 0-1 on the way to an 0-4 start. That’s it Steeler Nation! Let us know what you think!