Steelers: Impact of Suspensions


For weeks, fans across America waited in anticipation as NFL commissioner Roger Goodell deliberated the case of Tom Brady, better known as “Deflategate”.  Brady had been suspended for the first four games of the season for allegedly deflating the footballs to give himself the upper hand in the AFC championship game against Indianapolis.

Steelers fans were not only interested in this case, but also the case of star running back, Le’Veon Bell, who was suspended for a DUI back in 2014. Both of the suspended athletes appealed the decision made by the NFL, in hopes of getting a reduced suspension, or no suspension at all.

The long-awaited decisions were made on Tuesday, July 28th, and instantly, a swarm of anger, excitement, and shock swarmed the world of social media. It was a good day for Steelers Nation.

Tom Brady’s suspension was upheld. While he is taking the case to federal court, the NFL has stood its ground so far, and Brady will not play in the first four games of the 2015 regular season.

Le’Veon Bell on the other hand was granted some solace. The Steelers’ MVP had his suspension diminished from three games to two. While he had hoped for more of a reduction, cutting off any of his suspension is very beneficial to the Steelers.

How do these decisions affect the Steelers?

The Bell decision obviously affects the Steelers in a major way. Instead of Bell sitting out the first three games, he only has to miss two. That means that he will be absent for the games against the Patriots and 49ers, which are both winnable games, even without Bell.

In the first game of the season, the Steelers and the Patriots will be missing key players.

Mandatory Credit: Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Both teams will be without their running backs, Le’Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount, and while those are two major blows to the teams, there is no bigger setback than the lack of Tom Brady. While many Steelers players and fans wanted to see Brady on the field just to prove that they are truly better, it’s still pretty relieving to many that the men of steel won’t need to encounter the future Hall of Famer.

While it’ll still be no easy task to take down the defending champions, especially with the Steelers’ track record of playing down to opponents, Steeler fans should rest easy knowing they have a better shot at attaining victory against their Week 1 foe.

With an offense bursting with talent, and ready to dominate, along with the acquisition of DeAngelo Williams this offseason, the Pittsburgh Steelers are set up to succeed even without their star running back for the first two weeks. Despite the concerns regarding the defense holding them back, expect the Steelers to come out swinging in 2015.

Overall, Tuesday was a vital day for the Pittsburgh Steelers, and could very well become the difference between a playoff berth, and missing the playoffs entirely considering the difficulty of Pittsburgh’s schedule.

The Steelers will need to start strong if they plan to have a successful campaign in 2015, and nothing yet has shown they aren’t capable of doing so.

Next: Steelers: Will 2015 be a Steel Curtain call for James Harrison?

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