The talking heads (or 'Mediots') all talk about "Steeler Football" and how Pittsburgh needs to run the ball, blah blah.
Historically, the Steelers have had the talent and the mindset to be a run first, strong D team. That's great when you have Harris, Morris, Foster, Bettis, etc. But this team doesn't have quality running backs. Before the FWP crowd starts on me, he's averaged less than 4 yards a carry in over half of his games as the feature back. That doesn't move the sticks in a run first offense.
TomlArians should make Pittsburgh a pass-oriented team. Has there ever been a Steeler team with this kind of receiver depth: Hines Ward, Santonio Holmes, Mike Wallace, Limas Sweed, Heath Miller, Matt Spaeth and Mewelde Moore. And Stefan Logan was a pass-catching back in the CFL. That's a bonanza of options for Ben.
Stack that up against a poor run-blocking o-line with Parker, Mendenhall, Moore and The Tank. We can have Big Ben either throwing to all those weapons, or handing off to those backs. Seriously.
For the last two years, Big Ben and the passing game have worked. The running game has not. The passing game weapons are as prolific as we've ever had. Pass first. Ben gets clocked a lot already. Would he really get hit that much more often? Perhaps he would throw the ball away a little more often if he had more opportunities to throw. And maybe the line would improve it's pass blocking with more pass plays called during games.
Neil O'Donnell broke the Steelers decade and-a-half Super Bowl drought while re-writing many of the single season passing records. Because that team was ripe for a pass-oriented attack and Cowher saw it. The 2009 Steelers are that type of team.
If Pittsburgh scored 28 or 31 every week, how many NFL teams could top that against the D? How often would Pittsburgh lose 31-28?
And maybe, if the linebackers and safeties weren't bunched up to stop the run first, Parker and Mendenhall would have enough space to make some 4 or 6 yard runs.
This Steelers team is built for passing success. Especially with the way Ben has mastered the no huddle. And it's got a league-best defense.
Steeler football = winning football. This year, that should mean passing, not running.