For the first time this year, starting Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is a good idea. A depleted Vikings secondary faces the struggling Steelers offense, and considering the positive steps the passing offense took last week (ignoring the four turnovers Roethlisberger had), it makes sense to take a chance on Ben in London.
Fortunate are those who started Antonio Brown last week, as the fourth-year receiver exploded for 196 yards and two touchdowns. Considering he's never sniffed those numbers before (his previous highest receiving yardage total was 151 and he only had seven career touchdowns before Week 3), it would have been quite the prediction to say he would have had that kind of a game. Now, with the match-up being much more favorable, what will Brown do with it? Start him and find out.
Start if Desperate
It's very tempting to give a full green-light to rookie running back Le'Veon Bell, who will make his debut in Week 4, but it's just not realistic to think he's going to decimate a Vikings defense, even one that's 21st against the run this season. But we're not going to rule out the possibility the rookie does a decent job in his first game.
It's kind of similar for tight end Heath Miller. Roethlisberger will want to get him the ball (his first completion in Week 3 was to Miller, and Roethlisberger said after the game he was going to him on that throw no matter what). We can't say no, but we can't expect a high-level performance either.
However, Steelers kicker Shaun Suisham is the closest to a legit start among this group. The Vikings allow yards, and yards lead to field goals more often than touchdowns - especially when you have a one-dimensional offense like the Steelers. Suisham could crack double-digits this week, but it's just too hard to trust this offense.
Jonathan Dwyer had a nice run against Chicago - one at the end of which he drew a $21,000 fine for ramming Bears safety Chris Conte. He looks motivated, but if nothing else, Dwyer will have largely reduced carries with the presence of Bell. He just won't get the ball much in this game.
The emergence of Brown last week is part of the reason to lose faith in Emmanuel Sanders, but more than anything, it's just a lack of positive timing between Sanders and Roethlisberger. Sanders has been open deep on missed throws in each of the Steelers' first three games. It seems as if those outside-the-numbers fly patterns will be Sanders' to have this year, and the throws just haven't been there for him.
The Steelers defense needs to force a turnover before becoming a viable starting option.
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