PITTSBURGH — Ben Roethlisberger is inspired. The Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback, nonetheless, shouldn’t be satisfied his crew’s early offensive struggles are firmly within the rearview mirror.
Sure, there have been indicators of progress final week in opposition to Denver. Najee Harris ran with what’s changing into his trademark fury.
The offensive line created time for its 39-year-old quarterback to look downfield because the Steelers ended a three-game dropping streak.
Nonetheless, it was simply 4 quarters of competence. Roethlisberger is effectively conscious extra must be performed if Pittsburgh (2-3) needs to get again into the AFC North race beginning on Sunday evening in opposition to injury-riddled Seattle (2-3).
“Pay attention, in no way are we going to sit down right here and say, ‘Oh, we’re fastened. We’re this nice offense.’ We’re not there but,” Roethlisberger stated.
Neither are the Seahawks.
Just like the Steelers, Seattle finds itself in final place in a extremely aggressive division. In contrast to the Steelers, the Seahawks must make things better with out their greatest participant.
Quarterback Russell Wilson is out a number of weeks whereas recovering from surgical procedure on the center finger of his proper (throwing) hand. Geno Smith will make his first begin in practically 4 years whereas the Seahawks will play their first recreation with out Wilson beneath heart since 2011.
“We perceive there’s lots of people who’re counting us out, lots of people that imagine we will’t do it,” linebacker Bobby Wagner stated.
“We’ve proved folks flawed prior to now earlier than, and I don’t see why the long run doesn’t prove the very same approach.”
Having the NFL’s worst protection take a big step ahead would assist. The “Legion of Increase” days are lengthy gone, changed by a bunch that’s extra “fall down, go growth.” Seattle has allowed no less than 450 yards in every of its previous 4 video games, tying an NFL report.
“If I needed to pinpoint one factor, it’s that early on we bought in our approach quite a bit,” Wagner stated. “Whether or not it’s penalties, whether or not it’s errors and miscommunications, and in order that’s in all probability the largest factor. If we will repair these issues, we’ve the expertise and we’ve the folks to be a fantastic protection.”
For the time being, sufficient can be an enchancment.
Contemplating the unknown of getting Smith beneath heart for a full recreation, the Seahawks might have used the increase of operating again Chris Carson returning after lacking final week with a neck difficulty.
However that received’t be the case as Seattle dominated Carson out because of the neck drawback and is contemplating a stint on injured reserve for the beginning operating again.
Alex Collins is a confirmed, succesful backup and can get his second straight begin.
Collins ran for 47 yards on 15 carries in opposition to the Rams however he’s not Carson.
THE LAST TIME
Wilson has been beneath heart for the Seahawks for each common season and playoff recreation for the reason that begin of 2012.
The earlier time the beginning QB for Seattle wasn’t named Wilson was Jan. 1, 2012, when the Seahawks misplaced 23-20 at Arizona in Week 17 to complete one among two seasons in Carroll’s tenure the place they didn’t make the playoffs. The QB that day was Tarvaris Jackson, who went 21 of 35 for 222 yards, one landing and one interception.
NAJEE’S NEXT STEP
Harris had the primary 100-yard recreation of his profession when he ran for 122 in opposition to the Broncos. That quantity might need been even increased if not for a bout with cramps within the fourth quarter that compelled him to look at Pittsburgh’s ultimate drive from the sideline.
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