With a healthy Le’Veon Bell and a seemingly ageless DeAngelo Williams, do the Pittsburgh Steelers boast the best running back duo in the league heading into 2016?
When Le’Veon Bell went down with another big knee injury last season against the Cincinnati Bengals, the offense suddenly didn’t seem as potent as before. With the massive affect that Bell has on both the passing game and the rushing attack for Pittsburgh, he seemed so irreplaceable…then DeAngelo Williams came along.
A free agent pick up that had flown under the radar suddenly became one the most important signings in the league last year. DeAngelo Williams defied expectations, and instantly surged onto the field as one of the best running backs of the season.
Many still missed the dual threat capability, and the seemingly endless excitement of watching Le’Veon Bell, but no one could deny that DeAngelo Williams filled the void left by his absence.
With Williams’ leading the rush, the Steelers managed to stay afloat through the season, and into the playoffs despite an injury riddled year that crippled their potent offense at times.
This season, Bell is back, and so is Williams. It’s highly unlikely the Steelers will forget the spectacular performance of DeAngelo so quickly, and will give him the snaps he deserves, but it’s likely that Bell will resume his role as the team’s starter.
In a recent twitter post by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, they offered the idea that Doug Martin and Charles Sims III were the best running back tandem in the league. While the two definitely make a case as a good duo, Williams and Bell weren’t hesitant to shut them down, and proclaim themselves the best, and rightfully so.
Both running backs averaged over 4.5 yards per carry last season. Both had the production to be the top rusher in the league had either of them played the full season. Many analysts have called Le’Veon Bell the best running back in the league when on the field, and Williams proved last season that his name should be high up on the list as well.
Unfortunately, due to injuries and suspensions, fans haven’t been treated to the two working together very much, yet. The thought of the combination is mouthwatering to say the least, and if the Steelers passing game is at all limited due to Martavis Bryant being suspended (which it shouldn’t be too limited), you can be sure the rushing attack will be ready to carry the load.
Barring injury, the Steelers could easily boast one of the best, if not the best, rushing attacks this season. It’s something to definitely look forward to heading into next year.