What we learned from Steelers abysmal loss to the Cleveland Browns

  • The Steelers offense is the epitome of ineptitude
  • Defense could not come up with the big play
  • Steelers played listlessly on both sides of the ball
Pittsburgh Steelers
Pittsburgh Steelers / Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports
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The Steelers defense could not come up with the big play when we needed one

As I have been saying all season, the Steelers formula for winning games has been very simple. We play a 'bend, don't break' style of defense, generate turnovers, and put our offense in a position to either secure victory or get the go-ahead score to close it out on defense.

Although the defense was able to generate a turnover, it was not enough to make a difference as the offense went three and out after the INT. While the inability to score is not the fault of the defense, what is on the defense, at least in the game against the Browns, was the penalties.

The Browns were gifted three first downs by penalties. For a team that is struggling on offense, when the defense has a chance to get off the field, we have to get off the field to give the offense every opportunity to get on track.

We also had to burn some timeouts to avoid being penalized for illegal participation. That blame has to fall on Teryl Austin. If you know you have players who have just been elevated from the practice squad, how about trying to keep things simple? How about trying to make players play without having to overthink the calls that are coming in from the sidelines?

Of course, I am speculating here, but burning timeouts, particularly in the second half, is detrimental to both the offense and the defense. It's one thing to lose; It's quite another to lose and make it look like you don't know what you're doing in the process.

Let's see what else we learned.