The Steelers offense got off to a great start against the undermanned Colts, and have a 21-7 lead at the half after a huge goal line stand at the end of the first half.
The team is looking like the aggressor tonight thus far, and against a backup QB and an offense in Indy that has been limited, they could put this game away with a quick start in the third quarter.
Here’s some first half thoughts on the Steelers first half 14-point lead and what we can expect in the second half.
1. Airing it Out
The Steelers and Todd Haley haven’t been afraid to call the deep ball and throw deep more than once so far tonight, with even a long ball attempt that was incomplete to Sammie Coates. It looks like Ben and Antonio Brown are totally on the same page tonight, and so far Ben looks good, 9-for-13 for 144 yards and Brown has four grabs for 69 yards and the two touchdowns. Look for much of the same in the second half, as I think they are going to continue to challenge this Colts secondary and defensive backfield and try to get the ball to the playmakers downfield.
2. Confuse Tolzien
After William Gay knocked the ball out of Colts QB Scott Tolzien’s hand on the first offensive snap of the game, Keith Butler and company fell in love with the blitz, and tried to get to the Colts starter early and often. They have to be careful, as more than once he was able to step up and make some plays. He ended the first half going 8-for-15 for 84 yards and the one Colts score. I expect the Steelers to back off a bit in the second half and try to force the Colts QB into mistakes, and I can see the team coming up with a turnover or two from interceptions as he tries to get them back into the game.
3. Big Stand
I love the fact for the second straight week the Steelers defense held after allowing their opponents to get inside the five-yard line. Last week they smothered the Browns, and this week they held the Colts on four plays, with the key play being the first down stop on the direct wildcat snap to Frank Gore. With the offense playing well, it wouldn’t have been the end of the world if they would have score in my opinion, but at the same time, being up 14 at the half is a lot better than seven. This defense truly plays the bend but don’t break, and they did that the last two weeks in holding the Browns and Colts to three points after 8 plays inside the five-yard line. A huge momentum turner.
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