However, after every game there are players who deserve praise, and some who deserve to be tagged a 'loser'. See who falls into which category as the team now heads into Week 5 of the NFL regular season.
I am officially going to consider Mike Munchak for team MVP this season. In Week 4 they lost Ramon Foster and B.J. Finney filled in with no drop off in play. In Week 5, the team was down to their third string tackle in Chris Hubbard, and again...no drop off. The line kept a really good Jets' defensive front to one sack, and one quarterback pressure. Not to mention opening up running lanes to keep the Pittsburgh offense balanced. Tremendous job by the Steelers' offensive line.
380 yards, 4 TDs...ho hum...just another day at the office. Roethlisberger had a tremendous game, and it was noticeable from the first snap. Roethlisberger had looked 'off' earlier in the season, but he has been nothing but 'on' the past two games. 9 TDs in his last two contests, and about to play the dreaded Dolphins in Week 6.
I might gloat about Bell a lot, but he is worthy of such attention. Bell can beat you in a variety of ways. In Week 5 it was both on the ground, and through the air. Bell rushed for 66 yards on 20 carries (3.3 yards per rush), while catching 9 passes for 88 yards (9.8 yards per reception). Bell is the ultimate mismatch, and his 154 yards from scrimmage were the difference in this football game.
A unit which is banged up, stepped up in a big way. Keith Butler continues to throw wrinkles at the opposition, and although they might give up yardage (316 in Week 5), they are stingy in the red zone, as they held the Jets to just two opportunities, and they scored on one of those chances. The defense was able to tally three sacks on Ryan Fitzpatrick, along with 10 quarterback hits, 5 tackles for a loss and 6 passes defended. Don't look now, but this is a unit on the rise.
Coates is turning into a polarizing player. Just like Martavis Bryant, Coates knows how to take the top off a defense. This was obvious on his 72-yard touchdown reception in the first quarter, and continued with his 6 catch, 139 yard, 2 touchdown performance in Week 5.
If there was someone who could be both a Winner and a Loser, it would be Coates. Coates had 6 catches on 11 targets, and should have had two more touchdowns to add to his total. With Coates it seems he is always taking two steps forward, and one step backward. Always showing progress, but still having those moments which have you scratching your head saying "What the...". Coates adds a dynamic edge to this offense they didn't have early this season, and will need to show more consistency throughout the 2016 season.
Fake FG Play Call
When you have a defense which prides itself on bending, but not breaking, you never want to turn down points. This is exactly what the Steelers did when they chose to forego a Chris Boswell field goal and have Jordan Berry try an end-around run on 4th down. The turnover on downs resulted in the Jets' lone touchdown, and could have been disastrous if Pittsburgh hadn't controlled the second half.
If you are like me, you are sick and tired of writing injury reports. Cameron Heyward, Jarvis Jones, Shamarko Thomas and Sammie Coates all were listed as injured after the game. Heyward seems to be the most severe. He had to get an MRI on his injured hamstring, and although the results aren't back yet, it might be a few weeks before he returns. If this team would ever be healthy, talk about world beaters.