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Winners And Losers From The Steelers Exciting 1st Preseason Game

Abigail Dean/Pittsburgh Steelers

Winners And Losers From The Steelers Exciting 1st Preseason Game

The Pittsburgh Steelers won their first preseason game of the year for the fifth time in six years on Saturday evening. The only non-win came in 2020 when all games prior to the regular season were canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Mike Tomlin‘s team secured a 32-25 victory against the Seattle Seahawks. Certain players really stood out and and made a good impression in the first game action of 2022. On the contrary, the play from some guys can be seen as quite concerning. Here are the winners and losers of Saturday’s win.

 

Steelers Mike Tomlin

Pittsburgh Steelers head coach, Mike Tomlin participates during 2022 training camp at Saint Vincent College in Latrobe, PA. | Jordan Schofield / SteelerNation (Twitter: @JSKO_PHOTO)

 

Winners

1.) The Quarterbacks

The close quarterback race got even closer after the game against the Seahawks. Mitch TrubiskyMason Rudolph and Kenny Pickett all performed well in their first action of the season. Pickett garnered the most attention after a first drive that saw him go 5/5 for 33 yards and a touchdown including a two-point conversion. Trubisky and Rudolph were both mistake-free and threw a touchdown each. All three of these guys are ready for a competition and Steelers fans should be encouraged by the play of all of them.

Pickett led the offense to a game-winning drive finding Tyler Vaughns for a 24-yard score with under a minute to play. The rookie really showed out and is going to make it hard on Trubisky and Rudolph if he builds off of his 13/15, two-touchdown performance.

2.) Steven Sims

Sims is not expected to make the 53-man roster come September, but he had a great night on Saturday. He had a 38-yard punt return in the first quarter that led to a Rudolph to George Pickens touchdown pass and he eventually got involved in the rushing attack in the second half. He was involved in an end-around sweep that he received from Pickett and it also went for 38 yards.

3.) Anthony McFarland Jr.

McFarland is headed into his third season and has a great opportunity in front of him with both Najee Harris and Benny Snell Jr. banged up. The Steelers running back carried the ball seven times for 56 yards and began the game with a solid kick return that was negated due to a penalty. The #2 running back spot is wide open and McFarland solidified himself as a serious threat to take Snell’s job.

Losers

1.) Rushing Defense

The Steelers defense allowed over 146 yards per game against the run in 2021 and while key players were not playing, the unit was less than impressive. The Seahawks averaged 6.1 yards on the ground and the 2021 Achilles heel of the defense showed out again Saturday night. The defense definitely needed guys like Cameron HeywardT.J. Watt and Tyson Alualu up front. This group needs to be better going forward, regardless if it’s just the preseason or the real deal.

2.) Buddy Johnson

Johnson led the team in tackles during the game, but got beat badly on the Seahawks two point conversion that tied the game at 25. He was not solid against the pass and is involved in a jam-packed linebacking core that is desperately looking for someone to step up and provide much needed depth. Johnson hurt his chances of moving ahead of the injured, Marcus Allen.

 

Steelers Buddy Johnson

Steelers Buddy Johnson | Jordan Schofield / SteelerNation (Twitter: @JSKO_PHOTO)

 

3.) Kevin Rader

Connor Heyward had a solid night and Rader did no favors for himself in the passing game. He had plenty of opportunities to succeed in run and pass blocking, but didn’t stand out. He only had one catch and 6 yard to show for it. Meanwhile, Heyward had two catches for 24 yards and a successful two-point conversion. Rader’s job security is definitely not secure and the emergence of Heyward could hurt him even more.

 

Who are your winners and losers from the Steelers’ Saturday night action against the Seahawks? Let us know in the comments below!

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Madinsomniac

    August 13, 2022 at 11:16 pm

    Matt Canada was a huge winner… the offense looked good from start to finish

  2. Corey Larkin

    August 14, 2022 at 9:22 am

    My winners were the qbs for sure and the other two were RB Warren and RB Master Teague. I was really impressed with Teague and how he just hits the hole and explodes through.

  3. Angel Negron

    August 14, 2022 at 10:54 am

    Master Teaque deserves a shot. He was a hard runner with a burst at OSU.

  4. Allen L Williams

    August 14, 2022 at 8:11 pm

    Jalen Warren ran fast and hard, reminded me of Barry Foster

  5. Michael Patrick Milligan

    August 15, 2022 at 8:08 pm

    The biggest loser Saturday night was Devin Bush, not even mentioned in the article. He had the most to prove after last year, and he didn’t appear to even make the effort to try.

  6. Pingback: Steelers Superstar Safety Minkah Fitzpatrick Goes Head to Head with 2nd Round Phenom George Pickens on Tuesday - SteelerNation.com

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