FOXBOROUGH – How are the Pats going to top such a nail-biting and dramatic World Series such as the Red Sox with a regular-season Sunday afternoon game?
Dating back to 1972, the Steelers hold a 15-11 edge lifetime over the Patriots.
An abysmal 2-5 Steelers team, who has struggled throughout this 2013 season, has had o-line issues and an extremely sub par offensive showing thus far, makes this game yet another coin-flip, but wait for a moment, since when were coin-flip games such a bad thing for Patriot fans?
It doesn’t seem to be that so long ago a much younger Tom Brady and his New England counter-parts would struggle to win games, games that would come down to the end, where Adam Vinitari would come and have to be the eventual hero, before Tom was Tom, before the legend was even thought of, the Patriots had to fight for every win, non more than that 2001 team, that eventually landed them in the super bowl, where it started it all.
Columnists and fans alike have become so accustomed to being the giants of the NFL, we may have forgotten what it looked like, what it smelt like, what it hurt like to struggle a bit, to earn a win at the last second.
Coming into today’s game, Pittsburgh has the second-ranked passing defense, so while they are very stingy versus opponents, they are dead last in turnovers.
So in a way, this can bode well for the two young rookie receivers who both are in the top ten for dropped passes by a receiver in Thompkins and Dobson, while the Steelers will be playing tight in the passing game, if these two decide to not catch the ball it is unlikely the Steelers will take that opportunity to snatch the ball up.
Last week, Tom Brady was on the ground often against the Dolphins, not only will Brady be facing a talented front line for the Steelers, starting right tackle Sebatian Vollmer broke his leg ending his season.
New England’s o-line is a continuing problem, now relies on the likes of Marcus Cannon to fill the shoes of Vollmer.
Neither teams have a stellar rushing defense, and all signs point to a grind-it-out smash mouth-type of football game, but with the likes of Danny Amendola and Pro-bowl tight-end Rob Gronkowski back for his third game in a row, a Steelers top-ranked passing defense has a lot to work for today.
PATRIOTS MUST OR BUST:
Although the Patriots offensive line has been sub par to say the least and while the loss of Sebatian Vollmer is huge, Marcus Cannon MUST step it up in replace of Vollmer, to help solidify that line and keep Brady protected in that pocket.
New England MUST keep an eye on the Steelers two main weapons, wide out Antonio Brown and running back Le’veon Bell, while Brown has struggled to find the end zone he is averaging just over 11 yards per catch with over 600 yards receiving.
Bell, while only playing in his fifth NFL game, has found the end zone with three touchdowns, has struggled to move the ball when needed, he is a MUST player to watch because he does holster the ability to make the big move and single-handily ruin a team’s game plan.
Steven Michelson is the New England Patriots Beat Writer for The Inscriber : Digital Magazine, please follow him on Twitter at @steveandubshow
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