4 positions that will be the downfall of the Steelers in the playoffs

James Conner #30 of the Pittsburgh Steelers. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
James Conner #30 of the Pittsburgh Steelers. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images) /
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The Steelers will have a shot in the playoffs this year, but here are four positions that could cause them to lose.

After weeks of disheartening play that left a bitter taste in the mouths of Steelers fans around the globe, Pittsburgh finally got their act together in a terrific second-half performance against the Indianapolis Colts in Week 16. Despite being down 21-7 at the half, Pittsburgh rallied back to outscore the Colts 21-3 in the second half.

The offense finally showed some signs of life after nearly being declared legally dead, and Ben Roethlisberger arguably played the best half of football he has all year after choosing to sling the ball down the football field often late in the game.

However, two quarters of good offensive play shouldn’t be enough to convince fans that the worrisome play is now behind us. The Steelers will no doubt have a shot this year in the playoffs, but that sad truth is that there are a few positional groups who may not be good enough to get us over the hump. Here are four positions that could be the downfall of Pittsburgh in the playoffs this year:

Running back

This one shouldn’t come as a surprise, as Pittsburgh arguably has the weakest running back room of any team in the National Football League. While there are several factors that obviously come into play here, the running backs have not answered the call when asked to step up in games this year.

As a result, Pittsburgh is 32nd in the league in rushing – averaging a dismal 84.3 yards per game, according to Team Rankings. James Conner has been banged up recently, but even when healthy, he lacks elite speed, burst, and explosion to be anything more than an average runner. Meanwhile, Benny Snell has, for the most part, been a big disappointment this year, while rookie Anthony McFarland can barely find the field. If these guys can’t find success in the playoffs, it could be a very short run for the Steelers.