When analyzing the upcoming matchup between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the New England Patriots, some think the AFC Championship will be decided on the offensive side of the ball, and I agree with them 100-percent. When you compare the two offenses, they seem pretty even, but I feel the Steelers have the edge.
Comparing the two units, I ask myself a simple question, “Who would you rather have on the Steelers’ side of the ball, offensively?”
Those who are honest will say Tom Brady is an upgrade over Ben Roethlisberger, although Roethlisberger has his own style of play, but other than that...the Steelers have an offense which is superior.
Better offensive line.
Better running back.
Better No. 1 wide receiver.
Even better secondary options at this point.
Without Rob Gronkowski, the Steelers’ offense is poised to match the Patriots, but can they exploit the Patriots’ defense?
On the latest Steelers Connection podcast, which you can hear in the player above, I dive into the statistics and look at the Patriots’ defense, their ability to take the football away but, most importantly, how they stop the run.
Le’Veon Bell is the true difference-maker in this game and the Patriots’ run defense is no slouch. Certainly an upgrade over the previous two opponents the Steelers faced this postseason in the Miami Dolphins and Kansas City Chiefs. The Steelers’ ability to stay balanced, not turn to either a pass-happy or a run-focused offense will be the key to victory. Why? Because the Patriots are good enough and smart enough not to allow Bell to rush 10-straight times on a drive resulting in a touchdown.
Maybe I’m giving the Patriots too much credit, and that’s possible, but they’ve been successful for the last decade and a half for a reason. The Steelers’ offense is built to withstand the Patriots’ offensive attack, and even to match them point for point if need be.
It should be a tremendous game and a difficult task for the Steelers, but this offense is built for games just like this. To hear more, check out the podcast above!