The Steelers will take the field at home for the first time this preseason after coming off a disappointing loss in Green Bay last week. Here’s what to watch for versus the Tennessee Titans this weekend:
How Big Ben looks in “new” offense
With Todd Haley gone and in Cleveland, the offensive playbook is now in the hands of Randy Fichtner, who has been in the Steelers organization since 2007. The offense will look almost identical with maybe a few tweaks. Expect to see a lot more no huddle offense and Big Ben to have a little more freedom when it comes to running the very loaded offense in Pittsburgh this season.
James Washington with the starters
James Washington is coming off of a promising game vs the Packers last Thursday night where he caught two touchdown passes from QB Joshua Dobbs. With Ben Roethlisberger playing vs Tennessee, all eyes will be on James Washington to see how well of a connection Ben and the rookie WR have together. Look for Washington to play a lot this game and also look for him to have another outstanding game, as he continues to make his case for a starting spot.
The secondary as a whole
After giving up a record for most points allowed in preseason game as a team last week, the Steelers secondary comes in needing a good outing. We saw very few positives from the game against Green Bay and quite a few things that still need to be worked on. Starters are likely to play in Week 3, so that means we are bound to see Joe Haden for the first time, meaning that the whole starting secondary will be out there against Tennessee. The secondary has been something to keep an eye out on for awhile. Let’s see if they can quickly improve before week one.
The ‘Mack’ Linebacker Position Solution
There are rumors that Matthew Thomas will get some snaps with the first-team defense this week. The team is obviously unhappy with the play at the mack-linebacker position and is willing to turn over every stone to come to a solution to the problem. The Steelers fanbase have been vying for the team to give Thomas a try, and they may get their wish granted. Even if Thomas isn’t the answer, or the immediate answer, the team will still be looking closely at Jon Bostic and Tyler Matakevich for improvement.