Brown Looks To Make Franchise History As Steelers Offense Struggles

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - DECEMBER 19: Antonio Brown #84 of the Pittsburgh Steelers gains three yards and a first down getting tackled by Shawntae Spencer #36 of the San Francisco 49ers at Candlestick Park on December 19, 2011 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

With just 16 receiving yards Saturday against the Rams, Steelers WR Antonio Brown will make history.

When he goes over 1,000 yards for the first time in his career, he and teammate Mike Wallace will become the first Steelers receivers ever to reach the century plateau together, when neither of them were first-round draft picks.

Hines Ward and Santonio Holmes each had over 1,000 yards receiving in 2009 (Holmes 1,248, Ward 1,167), four years after the Steelers selected Holmes with the 25th overall pick in the 2006 NFL Draft.

Ward and Plaxico Burress each topped 1,000 yards in 2002 (Ward 1,329 and Burress 1,325) and 2001 (Ward 1,003 and Burress 1,008).

Brown became the second fastest receiver to reach the 1,000 career yards plateau in Week 10 of this season. It took him 19 games, while Wallace hit that mark in his 21st game, Week 7 of the 2010 season. It took Buddy Dial 18 games in 1961-62 to reach 1,000.

While it's unlikely the duo will meet Burress and Ward's record of 2,654 yards as Steelers teammates, they have played in a combined 68 games, while Burress and Ward had played 90 games together when they set their mark.

The individual pieces of this offense seem greater than the sum of their whole right now. Despite a bevy of playmakers, the Steelers are 22nd in the NFL in scoring offense, averaging 20.4 points a game. In the six quarters since Ben Roethlisberger injured his ankle in Week 14, the Steelers have scored 10 points.

Injuries across the offensive line can share some of the blame for sagging offensive production. Most recently, C Maurkice Pouncey has missed all or parts of the team's last four games. Pittsburgh was a top 10 team in rushing attempts last season, but are 21st this year, with 370 (26.4 carries a game).

Pouncey says he expects to play Saturday after missing Week 15, but Roethlisberger may not. He spoke after practice Wednesday, and told the gathered media he has not been told he isn't playing, and will prepare to start unless he hears otherwise.

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