Location: East Rutherford, NJ; Stadium: MetLife Stadium; Weather: 67 degrees, sunny; Kickoff: 1:00 PM ET; Line: PK; TV Coverage: CBS; Announcers: Jim Nantz (play-by-play), Phil Simms (analyst); Coaches: Mike Tomlin (Steelers) vs. Rex Ryan (Jets)
Pittsburgh Steelers: At 0-4, the Steelers are in a hole. They must do anything they can to dig themselves out. Offensively and defensively, the Steelers have had their problems through four games. Now coming off of a bye, the Steelers find themselves in a must win game to keep their season alive.
Offensively, the Steelers have gotten better progression, however, the offensive line has not. The Steelers traded for Levi Brown last week in hopes of bringing him along to help in the future. He or Kelvin Beachum will get the start today in New York. Running back Le’Veon Bell was exciting to watch two weeks ago in Wembley Stadium as he ran for two touchdowns and 50+ yards. As a whole, this offense must be on the same page against a good Jets defense.
When looking at the defensive side of the ball, they have been unable to turn the ball over. Luckily, Jets quarterback Geno Smith has had the tendency of turning the ball over this season. The Steelers defense are very effective against rookie quarterbacks. Defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau is very creative with his plays.
New York Jets: At 3-2, the Jets are in the race in the AFC East. Rookie quarterback Geno Smith already has three game winning drives and is showing how clutch he can be. Last Monday, Smith looked fantastic against the Falcons in a prime time showdown. Smith is already well-developed and has taken the quarterback job in New York by the horns.
Defensively, the Jets have to be thinking about rushing Ben Roethlisberger. The inability to protect Roethlisberger has to be running through Rex Ryan’s mind as his front seven have been among the best in the league.
What to look for: 1. Can the Steelers protect Roethlisberger? 2. Cam Heyward makes first start over Ziggy Hood. 3. Can the Steelers defense force a turnover?
|10/13/13||QB||Ben Roethlisberger||RIGHT FINGER||PROBABLE|
|10/13/13||CB||Antonio Cromartie||HIP, KNEE||QUESTIONABLE|
|10/13/13||DT||Kenrick Ellis||NOT INJURY RELATED||PROBABLE|
|10/13/13||WR||Santonio Holmes||FOOT, HAMSTRING||OUT|
Team Quotes: (Tomlin on Geno Smith) “He’s a very even-keeled personality type. That lends itself to being able to ride the roller coaster that can be that position, particularly at a young age. He has done a nice job of managing it. I’m not surprised by that, and I’m sure the Jets are excited about the direction in which he and they are going.” (Haley on Jets defense) “It’s right up there. We’ve had a busy week, two weeks really, trying to get prepared for the multitude of looks and personnel groups. We’ve done a good job out here in practice, the card team, so to speak. It’s really going to come down to our guys communicating, understanding who’s who on each snap because it changes from snap-to-snap. They’re a team where you may be in three receivers and they have base people out there and it’s just the opposite. You could be in a heavy package and they could have their dime package with six defensive backs on the field. That’s different than what you generally see. We’ve got to communicate, be ready to know who has who and handle it.
Bottom Line: The Steelers can not leave MetLife Stadium without a win.
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