Bengals News

Know Your Enemy: Scouting the Steelers with Dom DiTolla

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September 9 2012; Denver, CO, USA; Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Jason Worilds (93) reacts after his sack of Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning (not pictured) during the first quarter at Sports Authority Field. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chen

For tonight’s matchup between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Cincinnati Bengals, I spoke with Dom DiTolla the co-editor of FanSided’s Steelers-themed website “Nice Pick, Cowher. and he offered some great insight on what we should expect to see today.

1. What’s happened to the Steelers to cause them to struggle so much this year?

DT: I think it is a combination of three things: injuries, poor execution and a lack of talent.

Losing guys like Maurkice Pouncey and Larry Foote early did not help anybody. So much personnel-turnover along their offensive line has been a large reason why they struggled to protect Ben Roethlisberger early in the season.

As far as poor execution is concerned, that has been evident on the defensive side of the ball. Pittsburgh has allowed 11 plays of over 50 yards during their 5-8 start, and the defense’s penchant for surrendering big plays has cost them dearly. The fact that the run defense has sagged so much this fall has not helped matters either

The biggest reason why the Steelers have struggled so much in 2013 is due to the fact that they lack the necessary talent to succeed at multiple positions. On offense, the offensive line is the team’s biggest weakness. On defense, Steve McLendon has yet to emerge as a capable replacement for Casey Hampton. LaMarr Woodley has been a ghost for much of the 2013 campaign, and the secondary is an absolute calcified mess.