4 biggest problems Steelers offense must fix before the playoffs
I know that nobody wants to hear this. As a 38-year-old quarterback coming off major elbow surgery this offseason, Ben Roethlisberger has exceeded expectations. And while he is still worlds better than backup Mason Rudolph, he hasn’t been the most efficient passer in the league this year.
Through his first 11 games, Roethlisberger ranks 29th in the league in yards per attempt and 26th in air yards per attempt, according to Playerprofiler.com. While much of this is due to trying to protect him by getting the ball out fast, it hasn’t translated to a high-powered offense. What’s more concerning is that Big Ben is 31st in the league in clean pocket completion percentage and 21st in the league in red-zone completion percentage.
While one or two of these factors isn’t enough to point the finger at Ben, there are many advanced analytics to suggest that, outside of his touchdown-to-interception ratio this year, he just hasn’t been very efficient (especially down the field). The long and intermediate passing game has been an issue all season, and this is something that must improve down the stretch.
It’s hard to complain about the Steelers when they have posted the best start to a season in the history of the franchise, but I would be lying if I said I wasn’t concerned about this offense in the playoffs. Pittsburgh needs to find a way to fix some of these issues if they don’t want their season to end in disappointment.