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

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3. Watch Josh Jacobs out of the backfield

Josh Jacobs is not having a good start to the season. Through two games, he has 28 carries for 46 yards. Last week against Buffalo he had nine carries for -2 yards.

Steeler fans shouldn't expect him to be held to negative yardage for consecutive weeks. As much of a saving grace as Pittsburgh's defense has been, they are dead last in stopping the run having relinquished 386 yards on the ground.

Jacobs will likely receive more than nine carries against the Steelers as a result. But, if he continues to struggle, the Raiders are prepared to keep one of their best offensive talents involved in the passing game. Jacobs is the Raiders' third-leading receiver with seven receptions for 74 yards.

Through two games, the Steelers have allowed six receptions for 42 yards to running backs. The Steelers haven't exactly struggled with pass-catching backs to this point in the young season, but starting now would be ill-advised.

The Steelers' defense will respect Josh Jacobs as a top-tier talent as they should. Doing so is recognizing that he can be useful to the Raiders offense in multiple aspects.

Madden predicts outcome of Steelers vs. Raiders game. dark. Next. Madden predicts outcome of Steelers vs. Raiders game

If the Steelers are getting consistent pressure on Garoppolo and extra reps for Joey Porter Jr. prove useful, this is an often overlooked aspect of the game the Steelers defense will need to be prepared to combat to come away with a victory in the desert.