Fresh off the COVID list and after a valiant effort in Sunday’s loss to the Los Angeles Chargers, Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger took some time to talk with the media on Wednesday before practice. After being held in check for the majority of the game, the Steelers’ offense came alive in the fourth quarter, with the help of big defensive and special teams plays, to post 27 points on the board. Naturally, Roethlisberger was asked about the offense’s performance in Los Angeles. To that, Roethlisberger said:
“I don’t know our stats in terms of third down conversions and things like that, but there are some encouraging things to be found from that game. Unfortunately, you don’t win. That’s the worst part. We would take a win and crappy offense over a great offense and not win. There’s some things we can grow on I think.”
Looking back to the game, the Steelers entered the fourth quarter down by three scores; 17 points to be exact. This forced the offense to run a no-huddle scheme for the remainder of the game, of which is something that Roethlisberger seems to thrive in. With that said however, an up-tempo offense can be difficult to orchestrate all 11 players on each play. When asked about what he thought of the offense’s execution, Roethlisberger explained:
“You’re able to pick the tempo up. You’re able to kind of dictate what the defense is doing a little bit, or keep them plain,” he said. “I think that was good. I think communication, especially on the road where it was loud. There were a lot of Steelers fans there. It was loud. We were able to communicate, and I think things went pretty well there.”
With such a hurried offense, Roethlisberger is effective at getting the ball to open players; he’s good at getting all members involved. Against the Chargers, eight different players caught passes, with touchdowns to Diontae Johnson, Eric Ebron, and Pat Freiermuth. Roethlisberger talked some about what he thought of the distribution of the ball on offense:
“A lot of people got involved,” he explained. “We had a lot of different guys catch touchdowns. We did a little bit of a no-huddle type thing. For the line to be able to for the first time really do that. Tell them protections and then do it,” he continued. “Being able to move the ball and also answer scores. I think that’s such a big and underrated deal in the NFL. When you can answer a touchdown or a score, I think that’s huge. I think we did that a few times.”
Looking to Week 12, the Steelers are set to travel back to Ohio to face AFC North rival, Cincinnati Bengals. The Steelers lost to the Bengals at home back in Week 3 and have not beaten the Bengals since Week 10 of last season. We all know the importance of division wins, and Roethlisberger is no stranger to that. With the Steelers coming off a tough loss and the Bengals coming off a big win against the Las Vegas Raiders, this game is critical for both teams. With the Steelers and Bengals jockeying for position in the AFC playoff race, head coach Mike Tomlin talked about the importance of this game earlier this week, and Roethlisberger echoed those thoughts:
“We know it (is a big game). You see where the AFC is. You see where the AFC North is. They came here and beat us last time. We’re coming off a loss. They’re coming off a big win. It’s just every game now is starting to become more and more important.”
With T.J. Watt, Joe Haden, Minkah Fitzpatrick, and Isaiahh Loudermilk all set to return to action this week, the Steelers are working to get back to winning against the Bengals.
What did you think of the offense last week? What are you looking for in practice this week? Let us know in the comments below!