Plaxico Burress has a lot of history with the Steelers. He's been on the receiving end of passes from various quaterbacks throughout the transition of the position over the years. From speedy Kordell Stewart, to slow pocket passing Tommy Maddox and of course Pittsburgh's current franchise quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger, Burress has caught touchdowns and practiced with all of them. He's also been through a fair share of offensive coordinators, so when he speaks on the Steelers offense, it's from his lengthy history with the team. (Despite his time with the New York Giants and Jets.)
In the new era of the NFL, the league sees a lot of spread sets with more receiviers than running backs. But as the trends of the NFL change, Burress says the Steelers will remain grounded to their reputation as a running football team despite ranking 26th in the NFL in that department in 2012.
Last year was Todd Haley's first as offensive coordinator in Pittsburgh and he vowed a concentration on the running game. Although the ranking in the lower quadrant of teams who ran the ball in the league, running the football could be a lot different this season. The team boasts four young offensive lineman who have been drafted in the first two rounds of NFL drafts dating back to 2010 and a rookie running back in LeVeon Bell who could carry the load.
The Steelers have never been a team to change their philosophy of play just because other teams find success with various styles of offense. They've kept their mix of run and pass amidst fads such as the wildcat offense revitalized by the Miami Dolphins years ago and are witnessing several offenses use the pistol formation that brings back the quarterback option play for teams such as the Redskins and the Seahawks.
One thing is for sure, the Steelers will be looking to use the heavy investment into their offensive line to pound opposing defenses into the ground this year. Just don't look for this team to lead the league in rushing; the point of a revitalized rushing attack will be to make defenses fear the run more in order to open up more passing opportunities for the team's offensive general, Ben Roethlisberger.
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- Steelers offense will still emphasize the run in 2013
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- Steelers training camp recap: First day in pads
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