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4 “under-the-radar” players for the Steelers vs. the Bills

Looking at some unlikely potential heroes for Steelers at the Bills in Week 5.

NFL: Seattle Seahawks at Pittsburgh Steelers Philip G. Pavely-USA TODAY Sports

There are a few players on this Steelers roster that we look for to make that one big play or give that big-time performance for the Steelers to pull out a win each week. We know those names. Guys like T.J. Watt, Cam Heyward, and Minkah Fitzpatrick on defense; or Najee Harris and Diontae Johnson for the the offense.

These are the guys we as Steelers fans rely on to lead the team to victory.

But every week there’s one or two guys you maybe wouldn’t think about who’s play can either make or break the game. That slot cornerback who gives up a big play in a crucial moment, or that gunner on special teams that forces a fumble on a punt, turning the game on it’s head.

The Steelers head into Buffalo as major underdogs, and for good reasons, even beyond Pittsburgh’s own struggles through four weeks. Sean McDermott’s squad is primed for a Super Bowl run, and a seemingly overmatched Steelers team figures to be a simple bump in the road on the way to that reality. But this is the NFL. The margin between victory and defeat often comes down to one player making a play he doesn’t normally make, for better or for worse. Just ask the Kansas City Chiefs after their head-scratching loss to Indianapolis in Week 3.

So who could that player be this week for the Steelers? Let’s dive into a group of men that I think could turn the tide in the Steelers favor with a big contribution.

Stevens Sims

Mike Tomlin is tired of seeing the ball rolling on the ground on punts. So tired of it, in fact, that he’s effectively benching Gunner Olzewski for Steven Sims this week in an effort to spark the return game, much to the delight of BTSC’s very own Andrew Wilbar.

Sims has shown dynamic return ability in the past. If he could break one for a TD, or swing the field position battle with a couple big returns, the Steelers could find themselves with some extra points in a game where they’ll need a bunch. Sims could have a huge impact on this game.

Pressley Harvin III

Sticking with special teams, I think it’s safe to say we’ll see a couple punts on Sunday vs. this Bills defense. The man they call “Big Press” could alter the course of the game with a few timely, well-placed punts that make the Bills have to work extra hard to score. The longer the field, the more opportunities for Minkah Fitzpatrick to pick off a bad throw, or Alex Highsmith to get a strip sack that gives the Steelers an extra possession.

Tre Norwood

No. 21 could find himself mixed in a little more this week with Fitzpatrick banged up and Terrell Edmunds officially ruled out with a concussion. When he’s on the field, he’ll be tasked with keeping the Bills’ high-flying passing attack in check. Norwood’s flexibility should put him in position to help Arthur Maulet in the slot, who struggled mightily against the Jets last week. He’ll also play deep, keeping the likes of Stefan Diggs and Isaiah McKenzie in front of him.

I just have this feeling that Norwood’s performance will be a big part of success, or failure, this week for the Steelers pass defense.

Jaylen Warren

My final under-the-radar contributor is a backup running back with a major motor. Warren is extremely explosive hitting the hole and shows incredible contact balance. All it takes is a perfect blocking set up on a sweep, or maybe a missed tackle, for Jaylen to break one for a huge gain, swinging momentum the Steelers’ way. It would provide unlikely points for the Steelers offense.

Even in a reserve role, Warren could make a huge impact for the underdog Steelers on Sunday with just a single play.

If Pittsburgh wants to pull of a surprise victory on Sunday, they’ll need a few bounces to go their way. A big play or two from one of the players mentioned above could be just what the doctor ordered for this team in Week 5 against the Buffalo Bills.

Who are some other players you’re looking at to step up in Week 5? Let me know in the comments below. Looking forward to more Steelers football on Sunday. Here we go!