The Pittsburgh Steelers are preparing for the 2021 regular season, but before the real games begin, the team has to head to training camp to fine tune their skills. As we here at BTSC prepare you for the start of camp, we give you a series called “30 Scenarios in 30 Days” which gives you a Steelers scenario every day leading up to the start of camp.
It is simple how it works. We provide you the scenario, reasons why it will or won’t happen, and then our prediction for what we think will take place.
Let’s get to the scenario...
Scenario: The Steelers will score a special teams touchdown in 2021
Last special teams touchdowns scored by the Steelers:
Kickoff return: 2017, Week 17 (96-yard return by JuJu Smith-Schuster vs. CLE)
Punt return: 2019, Week 13 (85 yard return by Diontae Johnson vs. ARI)
Other special teams touchdown: 2017, Week 1 (blocked punt recovered by Anthony Chickillo vs. CLE)
Why it will happen: The last time the Steelers have gone two consecutive seasons without a special teams touchdown was in 2008 and 2009. The fact they did not score one in 2020 bodes well for them breaking one loose for 2021 from a mere statistical standpoint. Additionally, if Ray-Ray McCloud continues being more dynamic than what the Steelers have seen in the return game, it will only be a matter of time until things fall correctly to find the end zone.
Why it won’t happen: The most likely category for the Steelers to get a special teams touchdown is in the punt return department. The Steelers have only had two touchdowns from the ‘other’ category in the last 35 years with the other punt block coming in 1998 against the Kansas City Chiefs. As for kick returns, the Steelers last run back prior to 2017 was in 2010. With kickoffs going more as touchbacks, Steelers will have to get it done in the punt department. Whether or not they can get a return is really hit or miss.
Prediction: I think the Steelers have a good chance to score on special teams this coming year. Not only is it more from a statistical standpoint, but between dialing up quality punt block opportunities as well as having multiple players to return punts, the Steelers have as good of a chance as anybody to pull off a special teams touchdown.
Check out yesterday’s ‘30 Scenarios in 30 Days’ prediction:
Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black and gold as they prepare for the 2021 regular season.