Welcome to the BTSC Pittsburgh Steelers ‘Think Tank’. Here is where there will be a general question asked, and the answer will be hashed out in the comment section below the article. Unlike in the Friday Night Six Pack, and other articles which are banking on fan responses, this is just one topic to discuss.
Today’s ‘Think Tank’ question hinges around the fact the Steelers’ offense has been anemic this entire season. To be fair, there have been moments where they have performed “above the line”, as Mike Tomlin would say, but the majority of games have the Steelers thinking the same thing...
Just get out of the defense’s way.
There is no denying the strength of this 2019 Steelers team is built around the defense. This isn’t a bad thing, and has been able to be successful for years. After all, the saying “Defense wins championships” wasn’t just a slogan on a shirt. But even the best defenses were accompanied by an offense which was able to protect the ball and make some plays along the way.
This is where this Think Tank article stemmed from. The Steelers’ offense was horrid in the Week 15 loss to the Buffalo Bills on Sunday Night Football, yet they turned the ball over 5 times. If they turn the ball over just 3 times, they probably win the game. This points directly at the strength of their defense, but also at their opponent. The Bills aren’t an offensive juggernaut of a team, and win the same way the Steelers desire to win — with their defense.
But what needs to happen for the Steelers offense to be prolific enough to win games, get into the postseason and not be viewed as a charity case among teams like the Baltimore Ravens, Kansas City Chiefs and New England Patriots?
Obviously, the most important facet of this conversation is protecting the football. This has, and always will be, paramount when talking about a Steelers offense led by Mason Rudolph or Devlin Hodges. But how should the offense build their script for success?
Should they run the football by any means necessary? Do they have the line and the running backs to do this?
Should they be focused on controlling the clock, only throwing when necessary? Is this pressure packed approach best for a rookie quarterback?
As for me, I feel the Steelers should always strive for offensive balance. Being able to run and pass when necessary is essential to success, but you have to build a plan according to your roster. Tailor the plan to the strengths of not just Hodges, but to the offensive line. Take what they do best, and built off of that.
I know, easier said than done.
What do you think? Should the Steelers turn into a ‘3 yards and a cloud of dust’ offense? Or air it out? Let us know your thought in the comment section below, and be sure to stay tuned in to BTSC as the Steelers prepare for the New York Jets Sunday in Week 16.