3 keys for Steelers defense vs. Raiders on Sunday Night Football

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1. Bring the house against Jimmy Garoppolo

Alex Highsmith and TJ Watt nearly single-handedly beat the Cleveland Browns last week with their turnovers and splash plays. The Steelers defense should look to lean on them some more against a less-than-stellar Raiders offensive line.

That said, Jimmy Garoppolo is getting rid of the football quickly and has yet to hit the turf so far this season. Arguably, Watt and Highsmith are the best pass-rushing duo he's seen to this point, though the Bills and Broncos don't exactly employ scrubs on the edge.

Still, the Raiders passing offense is further along than its rushing attack, especially with Jakobi Meyers in the lineup. The Steelers' defensive backfield is still gelling and hasn't exactly inspired confidence that they can contain a top-3 wide receiver in Davante Adams.

The best way to eliminate the receivers is to be creative with the pressures to ensure pressure against Garoppolo. Throwing off his timing and moving him off the spot in the pocket would help the Steelers compensate for the unsatisfactory performance on the back end.

This can include bringing nickel and safety blitzes and integrating traditional Pittsburgh zone blitzes to change up the looks. After all, the youth on the interior defensive line doesn't pose the greatest fear to the Las Vegas offensive line. If Elandon Roberts or Kwon Alexander can get some penetration up the middle to compensate, it'd be a welcome addition to the pass-rushing effort.

Failing to do so will allow Garoppolo to hit quick-timing routes, setting up deeper shots to Adams which could prove fatal to the Steelers' chances of winning the football game.