The Steelers early results from camp clearly has the team heading into a different direction – one that hasn’t been seen from the club since the days of Jerome Bettis and Franco Harris,
That direction is focused more on the run game, using rookie Le’Veon Bell, and two players who this offseason dedicated themselves to getting lighter and faster – Issac Redman and Jonathan Dwyer.
The threesome, if all wind up on the roster, could give teams a headache in 2013, and it is sounding more and more if the Steelers are going to have a big season, it might be built around this three-headed monster.
Today we look at the main reasons just why a run game may be successful and win in 2013 in the AFC North.
1. Pressure Off Ben – The last couple seasons has been QB Ben Roethlisberger take some vicious shots that will take years off his career and life. Last season they almost lost him for the rest of his NFL career, but luckily got him back. With the reality that he’s not going to last forever, the way to extend him is to no have him get crushed with 30-40 sacks every season (30 a year ago, 40 in 2011), and a run game will be the key to that this upcoming season.
2. Confidence for the line – No question that when you talk to offensive linemen, they will always say they love to run block more than pass block. If the Steelers employ a new zone-blocked running game as they have early into camp, it will give these young OL’s like David DeCastro and Mike Adams something to look forward to. The backs need to make sure to find the holes, but I would be willing to be the lineman love this new thought of running the ball more and a lot.
3. RB’s an Area of Strength – The Steelers lost WR Mike Wallace this offseason, and unless a deal gets done, could lose Emmanuel Sanders after the 2013 season. The running backs seem to actually be an area of strength for this team, with Bell already having the best camp of any of just about any player on the roster. Redman and Dwyer appear to be hungry and have something to prove after not getting the job done a season ago in an 8-8 season, so play to your area of strength, that being the backs.
4. Something Different – Going back to “Steelers Football” has been craved by fans for some time, and if the Steelers do it, there’s no doubt that other teams will follow. Problem is, at least for 2013, the Steelers will own the book on running and time of possession in 2013. They also will work to be more physical and outhit teams, something that it looked at times got away from them last season. If the Steelers have success, it will be a fresh new take on something that most teams have gotten away from in past seasons.