Last week against the Browns was not the norm, obviously. You don’t see the Steelers turning the ball over 8 times on a regular basis. It was a complete team effort in futility but we shouldn’t expect that this team will just fall apart even after a terrible game like that.
You can say that when Ben Roethlisberger is on the field, magical things happen inspite of having a sub part offensive line and you’d be exactly right. Super Bowl XLIII is living proof of that. Even since then, the Steelers made it to the big dance against the Packers with line held together by a hope and prayer on any given week. Beyond that we’ve all seen Roethlisberger make something out of nothing, time after time time.
The more things change, the more they stay the same. The 2012 Steelers offensive line is again in flux with rookie Mike Adams out and fellow rookie Kelvin Beachum taking his place. If Willie Colon isn’t able to go then Maurkice Pouncey could move to his left one position and utility lineman extratraordinaire Doug Legursky would be at Center. All this change is not only rough for the 5 guys up front but the running backs and quarterbacks all have to adjust as well.
The problem is, Big Ben isn’t on the field to work his magic; at least not yet.
I generalize that last sentence because while Mike Tomlin says that Jonathan Dwyer and Charlie Batch will start at RB and QB respectively, you never know what might happen.
Dwyer is clearly the best suited, at least in my mind, to carry the ball with a make shift line in front of him. His ability to power through blockers and literally fall forward for extra yards is a huge asset. Still he needs to have holes opened up for him, even the Mini Bus can’t do it all himself.
Assuming Charlie Batch starts, he’s the type of QB that can manage the game if given enough time to do so. Last week was just bad, we all know it and Charlie knows it. He’s been around long enough to have a short memory and overcome last week, knowing what’s at stake the rest of the season.
Even with Mike Adams’ struggles, you can see the gradual improvement in him and most importantly the line was able to stay largely intact most of the season. Now with Sean Kugler back to the merry go round situation, the onus is on the front 5 to make a statement and come together because the margin for error is about as small as it can get without completely disappearing.