Whether it is a game or an offensive series, this team goes where the offensive line takes it. A leaky dike is all we really need, not the Hoover Dam. But with guys like Trai Essex playing, the Steelers can't stay above the flood tide for very long. That roar you hear isn't the crowd, it's the rush of oncoming defenders trying to wash away the legs and face of Ben Roethlisberger.
Sounds ridiculously simplistic but this is football, and the need for good line play never ceases. In basketball, offensive talent is very hard to stop - you can't tackle the guy dribbling the ball. The skill of players with the ball is not dependent upon others for success. In football, that is the essence of the game.
What was the biggest difference between the Titans game and the games either side of it? The play of the offensive line. The Titans beat the Ravens and that is not so easy to do. The Steelers beat the Titans because the O Line made possible the use of the Steeler's incredible offensive firepower. The defense also played well but the offense needs to score for this team to win big games. This defense is not going to win us games by keeping the other team to less than 10 points, nor should they be expected to.
For the Titans game, the Steelers were able to put 5 guys into 5 spots where they mostly fit and could function together as a unit. Starks came in off the street and looked better than anyone playing LT in a black and gold uniform has in a long time. When Legursky gets hurt(again) and the RT position is also a revolving door, you get a second half like we saw yesterday. If the Steelers simply gain enough yards for 3 or 4 more first downs, this game is over and done with. No last second heave to the endzone, no drama. But the eleven on the field at any moment is changing constantly and that is a dangerous thing.
If the Steelers can ever put together an average offensive line and keep it there, the offense will continue to have dynamic plays and at least a decent running game. The defense is good enough to keep them in most games. Without the O Line solidifying, the Steelers are vulnerable against 3/4 of the teams in this league. With just an OK offensive line, they can beat anyone.
Not too sure what, if anything can be done with the roster. If they sustain a season ending injury to an O Lineman, does the salary cap allow for them to sign anyone else? If so, how much can they utilize - same value as the IR player? I believe kk99 and others have expertise in this matter. I guess it's just hope for the best for now, hope they can rebuild the dike before the next high tide.