The Pittsburgh Steelers are gearing up for the Los Angeles Rams in Week 10 of the 2019 regular season. Entering the game with a 4-4 record, the Steelers prepare to host the Rams on Sunday at Heinz Field.
Since this is an unfamiliar matchup for the Steelers, playing an NFC West team, many fans want to know more about this matchup. Sure, there are the big name players in the matchup, but what about all those other players who can make a difference?
So, I wanted to get a lowdown on what the Rams might have in store for the Steelers by talking with Turf Show Times, SB Nation’s Rams website, editor Joe McAtee to pick his brain on the upcoming matchup.
In this second of many installments, I asked Joe what he thinks the Rams will do when they are on defense and trying to stop the Steelers’ offense. Check out his response:
Outside of their performance against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 4, this has been the more stable of the two sides. DL Aaron Donald remains perhaps the best player in football and single-handedly requires game plans from opponents that are shaped around his disruption. LB Cory Littleton is one of the more athletic linebackers in the NFL. And the secondary has been very good even before remaking the cornerback depth chart by trading out CB Aqib Talib and CB Marcus Peters and bringing in CB Jalen Ramsey. So the expectations here are a bit more solid. Donald will eat a bunch of double teams. That should free EDGE Dante Fowler and perhaps LB Clay Matthews if he’s ready to return from a broken jaw he suffered in early October to take on one-on-ones. With Ramsey locking down one side, CB Troy Hill will yet again be under the microscope. He’s actually been very reliable since 2017 filling in. Given the way your guys’ offense has struggled this year, I’d expect a strong showing from the Rams’ defense.
Running a similar feature on his site, I responded to the same question, but how the Steelers’ offense will try and move the ball on the Rams’ defense. Here is my response:
The Steelers’ offense has been anything but consistent since Ben Roethlisberger was lost for the season in Week 2. If you can bank on anything with the Pittsburgh offense it is the utilization of the short passing game. Mason Rudolph hasn’t been successful driving the ball down the field, mainly due to a lack of attempts in this offense, so the Rams will likely want to crowd the line of scrimmage and force the Steelers to push the ball down the field, taking away the short/intermediate routes which have been the bread and butter of the offense. I doubt the Steelers will have much success running the football, so look for the screen game and short passing game to be used as an extension of the running game this Sunday.
Will the Steelers be able to move the football someway, somehow, in this contest? Or will Mason Rudolph and company continue to struggle with consistency necessary to prove they are just pretenders in the AFC Playoff race?
Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below, and be sure to keep tabs on BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they prepare for the Rams in Week 10.