Steelers Prepare for Monday Night in Tampa

TV Broadcast:

ESPN starting at 8:15 p.m. ET. On the call will be Joe Tessitore, and Jason Witten with Booger McFarland and Lisa Salters on the sidelines.

Radio Broadcast:

Steelers Radio Network on WDVE 102.5 – Game coverage begins at 8:00 p.m. ET; Pregame programming begins at 5:00 p.m. Calling the game will be Bill Hillgrove (play-by-play), Tunch Ilkin (color analyst) and Craig Wolfley (sideline).

All fans in the Pittsburgh area can listen locally on WDVE 102.5 FM & WBGG 970 AM.

Final Injury Report for Monday Night

S Morgan Burnett (groin) – Did Not Participate – Doubtful
G David DeCastro (hand) – Did Not Participate – Doubtful
T Marcus Gilbert (hamstring) – Limited Participation – Doubtful
DE Tyson Alualu (shoulder) – Full Participation
G Ramon Foster (knee) – Full Participation
CB Joe Haden (hamstring) – Full Participation
C Maurkice Pouncey (non-injury related) – Full Participation
DE Stephon Tuitt (illness) – Full Participation

The 3 Keys to Victory

The Steelers must not fall behind early. Playing from behind has become a common theme for Ben Roethlisberger and co the past two seasons. They’ve been able to overcome deficits on the road against Cincinnati, Indianapolis, and Detroit, but it eventually caught up with them against Jacksonville in the playoffs.

Last week the offense went three and out in their first three possessions while falling behind 21-0. They rallied to tie by halftime, but stalled again in the third quarter. Consistently must be found in this high-powered attack or it won’t matter how many super stars play on the Steelers offense

Communication will be key. Like the offenses early game struggles, communication issues on the defensive side of the ball have plagued their young secondary. Lack of preseason playing time along with injuries have left the Steelers secondary unable to get on the same page. Watching the defense try to get situated pre-snap has been a mind-boggling task. It won’t matter who is quarterbacking in Tampa if the Steelers blatantly leave receivers wide open as they did against Kansas City.

Though Ryan Shazier wasn’t apart of the secondary this team desperately needs his calming presnap presence on the field. He was their defensive quarterback.

Let the clock strike midnight on Ryan Fitzpatrick. Lets be real, he isn’t an MVP candidate, he’s a career journeyman who has played for half of the NFL. He’s found lightning in a bottle, but the magic will end just like it did for Mike Tomczak during the ’96 season. Tomczak came in for Jim Miller in the second half of the season opener against Jacksonville. He led the Steelers to a 5-1 record, but finished the season 5-5 before the Steelers were steam rolled in a foggy Foxboro.

Bud Dupree and TJ Watt must get after Fitzpatrick and make him revert to the turnover machine he has always been. Especially late in close games. Don’t let him get comfortable and sit back there in the pocket or he will pick them apart.

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