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Steelers Gab 2014 Week 4 NFL Preview – Pittsburgh At Jacksonville


The 2-2 Steelers are still trying to right the ship after their upset loss to the Bucs last Sunday at home to the Bucs. The team heads for two straight on the road, to Jacksonville and then to Cleveland for a week one rematch with the Browns.

The Jags are 0-4, coming off a loss in San Diego, but have a new look with new QB in rookie Blake Bortles. They are hoping they can land the same blow to the Steelers that the Bucs did on Sunday.

Today we take a look at the game, how we think it will end up, and if the Steelers can get out of Florida with a win.

1. Confuse Bortles – We all know the numbers when it comes to Dick LeBeau defense against a rookie QB, and that number should give the Steelers are big upper hand Sunday against the Jags. Bortles has thrown for 476 yards with 3 touchdowns and four picks in just over two games, and while he wasn’t awful vs the Chargers, he could be just what the Steelers defense needs to get back on track after that loss to Mike Glennon and Tampa Bay.

2. Faster Start – Last week the Steelers fell behind 10-0 before a lot of fans even got into Heinz Field, and this week on the road the team can’t afford that same type of slow start vs a Jags team that can be beat up as they are last in total defense, scoring defense and pass defense. The Steelers are putting up 6.3 yards per play, best in the AFC, and with their advantages on offense, it would be nice to look up at the scoreboard at half and be up 10-17 instead of it being a tight game.

3. Big Play Focus – The Steelers have such a huge edge when it comes to their offense against the Jags defense – and they should be able to exploit it. Consider that The Jaguars have given up 25 pass plays of 20 yards or longer this season, including six that have gone for touchdowns. The Steelers big three of Ben, Antonio and Le’Veon should be able to dominate the game with huge plays, and it wouldn’t be a stunner to see Ben go for over 300, Le’Veon 100 and Antonio 100. With that, the Jags want to try to put the awful defensive start behind them, and look for them to try and confuse the Steelers offense.

Prediction – Last week is over, and there’s nothing the team can do about that awful loss to the Bucs. They do have a shot this week to get back over .500, and should do it against maybe the worst (along with Oakland) team in the AFC. Jacksonville will be hard pressed to put up 14 points, while the Steelers shouldn’t have an issue scoring at least 24-30 as their offense dominates with yards and points over an overmatched Jags club. Steelers 34 Jacksonville 14

Matt Loede has been in the sports media for over 16 years, with experience covering the MLB, NBA, and NFL. On Sunday’s during football season, you can hear Matt on national networks like Fox Sports Radio, Associated Press, and others. Born and raised in Cleveland Ohio, Matt studies and talks football inside and out, and is anxious to share his thoughts and comments with readers on a daily basis.

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