As the Pittsburgh Steelers fell to 6-4 after a tough loss to the Cleveland Browns in Week 11, it's easy to see why. The Steelers' defense has been solid for the most part but unfortunately, their offense is abysmal. It has been for weeks now and whether you blame it on quarterback Kenny Pickett, head coach Mike Tomlin, or offensive coordinator Matt Canada, all eyes are on this Steelers' offense and their lack of delivering results.
Something isn't clicking and players are obviously just as frustrated as fans are because everyone knows they are better than this. Yes, they squeaked a few wins here and there to be 6-4 but when it comes to those "put up or shut up" kind of football games against division rivals, they crumbled. It's sad, to be honest. If this offense played half as good as their defense did, this team could easily have 7 or 8 wins at this point of the season.
After that Week 11 loss to the Browns, running back Najee Harris held nothing back and spoke from the heart as to how he was feeling about the overall performance of this offense. It's no secret that it wouldn't be long before players start chiming in and stating the obvious and honestly, it's great because it already inspired change for the better.
Najee Harris is just as tired as fans are with lackluster offense
In an article written by Ray Fittipaldo of Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, here's what Harris had to say about the current state of the Steelers' offense and the reality of the situation they are in:
"“You can look at it two ways,” Harris said. “You can look at the record and say, ‘OK, we’re still good right now.’ Or you can look at the record and be like, ‘If we keep playing this type of football, how long is that [expletive] going to last?' Y’all can look at it like it’s a good record, but it’s the NFL. Winning how we did is not going to get us anywhere.”"- Najee Harris on the Steelers
Harris hit the nail right on the head since it's absolutely true. It was only a matter of time before the Steelers would eventually not be able to keep up offensively with their opponents and lose close games since they weren't scoring touchdowns. Playoff-caliber teams know how to win close games and it almost always boils down to how efficient their offense is. Yes, a team's defense can indeed bail a team out a few times and leave a game victorious but that shouldn't be expected every single game.
At some point, the offense has to hold their weight too. Unfortunately for the Steelers, their identity is all around their defense and nothing else. Their offense can't get first downs, can't score touchdowns, and can't get the job done efficiently in red-zone situations. It's a shame because a lot of that does indeed come down to the offensive play-calling during those pivotal parts of a game when scoring matters to be in a better position to win.
Now that Canada is finally gone, the Steelers can hopefully get out of their offensive funk and onto better days. It was going to happen regardless and considering the Steelers made this move during the week as they prepare for the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday, goes to show they are serious about fixing their offensive woes now.
It looks like what Harris said reached the right people to encourage change. This couldn't have kept going and it's great the Steelers got rid of Canada since that's a huge step in the right direction. This season isn't over for the Steelers just yet so there is still time to make the necessary changes to get this offense back on track.