Najee Harris should be heavily involved in the game plan
After not seeing much action in the pre-season, Najee Harris and the Steelers’ running game was expected to be a major factor against the 49ers.
However, the game dictated a different pattern when San Francisco jumped out to a big lead. Harris played just 33 snaps and ended the contest with a career-low eight touches according to pro-football-reference.com.
The Steelers can’t afford to let the same happen in week 2. Pittsburgh has to establish the running game, with Harris the feature back. He’s had good games against the Browns before, including a 28-carry, 188-yard performance against Cleveland on Monday Night Football at Acrisure Stadium during his rookie year.
In fact, when Harris has at least 20 rushing attempts in a game, the Steelers are 10-2-1 (.808) over the course of his career.
Harris has scored a rushing touchdown in all four games he’s played against the Browns, averaging 23 carries and 103.8 rushing yards per game against them according to statmuse.com.
In addition to his rushing ability, Harris has also been a factor in catching the football out of the backfield. That’s an underrated aspect of his game that needs to be highlighted this week, especially since the Steelers will be without Johnson.
Harris has made at least three receptions in three of his four meetings with the Browns. Overall, he has made 117 catches for 698 yards (6.0 yards per catch) in his career.