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Film Room: 2 of Mike Tomlin’s draft “reaches” have a big day for the Steelers vs. the Jaguars

Behind the Steel Curtain - Mon, 11/23/2020 - 9:00am
Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Steelers got some major contributions in their tenth win of the season by two players who were labeled “reaches” when they were drafted.

The Steelers draft selections of both Terrell Edmunds and Bud Dupree have both been called a “reach.” A draft pick used on a player that could have been drafted later in the draft, while better players were available with that pick. Bud Dupree was drafted with the 22nd pick of the 2015 NFL draft, while Terrell Edmunds was drafted with the 28th pick in the 2018 draft.

Both were late first round picks, both were viewed as a bit of a project, but both were also athletic standouts, posting ridiculous all-around combine results and elite SPARQ scores. The Steelers valued that athleticism, as well as their character and personality enough to draft them higher than the draft gurus and most Steeler fans thought they were worth.

Both played as rookies from week 1, and while they earned snaps and starts as rookies, their statistical production has been consistently looked at as disappointing. For it’s part, the film has always shown flaws, but also the athleticism that allows the Steelers to use them differently than most players at their position.

This week, against the Jacksonville Jaguars, both Edmunds and Dupree showed up in the stat sheets and on film making plays.

1st quarter, 8:47. Bud Dupree is the edge defender to the top of the screen.

Cam Robinson tries to reach out and block someone, but unfortunately Bud Dupree is screening his calls, easily deflecting the offensive lineman’s hands and bringing down running back James Robinson before anyone can even warn him about the impending danger. The Jaguars took the opening drive of the game 52 yards and kicked a field goal, this was the first play of the second drive, and from that point on, the Jaguars would not have another 50 yard drive, nor would they score again in the game.

3rd quarter, 5:12. Bud Dupree is the edge defender to the bottom of the screen.

Cam Robinson gets a better start to this play, and is able to divert Bud Dupree up the arc. Dupree doesn’t settle for that though, and like he has many times before, comes in from behind to hit the quarterback and force an incomplete pass. With Dupree’s speed and motor that doesn’t quit on plays, he makes a lot of plays after his initial moves fail.

4th quarter, 14:56. Bud Dupree is the edge defender to the top of the screen.

Bud Dupree is fast, but he’s also powerful, and in the last two seasons he has been able to put that together more. On this rush Cam Robinson is able to get back fast enough to mirror Dupree’s rush, but he can’t get back that quick and keep a low base, and Dupree exploits that, driving Robinson backwards and getting ahold of quarterback Jake Luton for on of only two sacks the Steelers would record on the day.

Dupree was constantly in the Jaguars backfield, pressuring the quarterback and either diverting or stopping their run game. But he also made a play in coverage.

1st quarter, 0:18.

Bud Dupree does a great job breaking on this pass and gives himself a great chance to show off his hands and why he was moved to the defensive side of the ball as a freshman in college.

Maybe it is a good thing that Bud Dupree flubbed this interception, because his team mate and fellow draft “reach” Terrell Edmunds, who is well known for his lack of interceptions, would not let one get away in this game.

2nd quarter, 0:36. Terrell Edmunds is the deep safety to the top of the screen.

Terrell Edmunds ends his interception drought at 788 days when he corralled this overthrown ball for a gift interception. While you may discount this one, because it was thrown pretty much right at him, he still made the catch, something many defenders, and Terrell Edmunds himself fail to do regularly.

With the streak broken, Terrell Edmunds was all smiles.

As often happens when a bad streak finally ends, the player relaxes, gains a boost of confidence and you get more good results.

4th quarter, 8:41. Terrell Edmunds is the deep safety to the top of the screen.

This isn’t a gift at all, Edmunds shows his mastery of the art of holding so still that it renders you invisible, before breaking on the ball, tipping it up to himself and ending the second interception drought of his career at 18 plays.

Terrell Edmunds has been looking better and better as his third NFL season has progressed, and in week 11, finally broke his streak of games without an interception with the second and third interceptions of his career, both of them coming as a deep safety, something you may recall this writer repeatedly calling his worst position this past offseason. Bud Dupree took a while to start making the impact Steeler fans wanted him to make, establishing himself as a really good edge player in his 4th season. Terrell Edmunds has stepped up in his third season and is looking like a player you would want your team to draft in the first round. Dupree has already put the criticism that he wasn’t worth a first round pick behind him, and Terrell Edmunds is on his way as well. How much more can they bring to the table this season will be an important factor in how far this team gets on it’s quest to bring home a seventh Super Bowl championship.

Report Card: Grading the Steelers win over the Jaguars

Behind the Steel Curtain - Mon, 11/23/2020 - 8:00am
Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

Breaking down the success and failures of Pittsburgh’s Week 11 performance.

The Pittsburgh Steelers took care of business Sunday and slowly built up a dominating win over the Jacksonville Jaguars. At times the Steelers looked off but won by a 24 point margin. They continue their undefeated run to start the season with a record setting tenth straight victory.

Let’s evaluate the team and highlight some individual performances. You may think my grades are spot on, you might also think I'm an idiot. Regardless, express your thoughts in the comments below.

Let’s do this...

Offense

Grade: B

This one was tough for me, on one hand the Steelers found themselves in scoring position seven times. On the other hand the unit was completely flat in the first and third quarter. Ben Roethlisberger had another outstanding game, but did force another ugly interception to end the first half (had he completed it this grade is easily an A).

The running game finally picked up a 100 yard day for the first time in a number of weeks. While they still have quite a few things to work out, being able to surpass the 100 yard mark was much needed for a team that only averaged 46 yards on the ground the past three weeks. The most obvious issue is the short yardage game, but if the Steelers can find a way to pick up yards on the ground it will only make it easier on the pass game.

Defense

Grade: A+

What a day from the defense. Aside from the first drive of the game the Jaguars were never able to move the ball. Four interceptions (with three other chances dropped) a pair from both Minkah Fitzpatrick, and Terrell Edmunds (yes, that Terrell Edmunds). They got to Luton early and often but the rookie quarterback opted to force the ball rather than take sacks. A number of holds also kept T.J. Watt off the sack sheet but Bud Dupree and Stephon Tuitt were able to get to Luton.

The Jaguars found early success targeting Robert Spillane but a quick adjustment stopped the bleeding. Spillane flaws are apparent, teams are going to look his way anytime he's in coverage from here on out. The Steelers defense would be unstoppable if Devin Bush was healthy, but I can't help but think Williamson would offer a bit more than Spillane right now.

Special Teams

Grade: B+

The good news, the Steelers stuffed a trick play early in the game. The average news, everything else was fine but not great, the bad news Kam Canaday needs to get his snaps under control as Boswell missed an early field goal.

Ray Ray McCloud was limited from mounting any sort of field flipping play. Which is fine but he's changed games himself, and his success is almost becoming expected.

Jordan Berry was fine punting the ball the nothing bad, nothing spectacular. A forgettable punting game is a fine punting game in my book.

Coaching

Grade: A

The Steelers dominated this game, don’t get it twisted. They won a rainy road game in Jacksonville by 24 points. The Steelers are 10-0 and steam rolling their way through the AFC. Sure, the offensive play calling could be better at times. But the Steelers were able to move the ball almost at will in this game. Even when they were struggling the Steelers were flipping the field and picking up a first down or two each time out. If Ben doesn't throw that end zone pick, or Boswell connects on the early field goal the Steelers win the game by at least 30 points.

Keith Butler should be getting some consideration for assistant coach of the year. The Steelers defense has been absolutely dominant the past two games and continues to lead the Steelers to victories.

Mike Tomlin is also blowing away the competition for coach of the year. What a fantastic job he's done keeping everyone level headed. This staff has led the team to victory in a number of different ways, this experience will pay dividends come playoff time.

Overall

Grade: A

The Pittsburgh Steelers are yet to play the perfect game. Without question they still have holes that need to be patched up. With that said they continue to win games, and make improvements with every outing. If they continue this upward assent there is no question they can be the ones hoisting a Lombardi come seasons end.

This game was far from perfect yet the Steelers cake walked to victory. It’s alright to be excited.

The Steelers will now prepare themselves for a thanksgiving clash with the Baltimore Ravens. A win on Thursday all but locks up another AFC North title for the Steelers. A Ravens loss could hamstring the clubs playoff push. A lot will be on the line Thursday night! Keep your eyes locked on BTSC for the latest updates, breakdowns, and previews for the Steelers Week 12 match up with the Ravens.

Analyzing the Steelers Week 11 win over the Jaguars, by the numbers

Behind the Steel Curtain - Mon, 11/23/2020 - 7:15am
Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

There are plenty of numbers to discuss after the Steelers 27-3 victory in Jacksonville on Sunday

The Pittsburgh Steelers are rolling through the 2020 season as they continue to stack their wins all the way up to 10. Although it wasn’t a perfect game in Jacksonville, the Steelers offense did more than enough while the Steelers’ defense all but completely shut down the Jaguars.

After continuing their historic winning streak to open the season at 10-0, here are some of the numbers which helped lead to the Steelers decisive 27-3 win over the Jaguars.

3

As head coach Mike Tomlin says, “If they can’t score, you can’t lose.” Other than giving up a 41-yard field goal on the first drive, the Steelers kept the Jaguars off the scoreboard on Sunday as they only surrendered 3 points. It was the fewest points the Steelers defense has allowed since Week 4 of 2019 when they defeated the Cincinnati Bengals by the same score of 27-3.

+3

Although the Steelers did not play flawless in the turnover department, they did finish with a +3 advantage in the turnover margin. With a pair of interceptions each by Minkah Fitzpatrick and Terrell Edmunds, the Steelers had four takeaways on the day. Their only blemish was an interception in the end zone thrown by Ben Roethlisberger on the final play of the first half.

2

Throughout the entire game, the Jacksonville Jaguars only took two snaps inside the Steelers red zone. With 3:50 remaining in the second quarter, the Jaguars snaped the ball at the Steelers 12 yard line and ran for one yard. On the next play, Tyson Alualu batted the Jake Lutton pass into the air which resulted in a Minkah Fitzpatrick interception. Not only was it the last snap taken in the red zone by Jacksonville, they only took 3 more snaps in Steelers territory the remainder of the game. On their first drive of the second half, the Jaguars moved the ball as far as the Steelers 36 yard line only to commit two penalties followed by a Stephon Tuitt sack which pushed them back across midfield before punting.

73

The Steelers had a much improved run the defense on Sunday holding the Jaguars to 73 yards on 17 carries. It was the fewest amount of rushing yards the Steelers have given up since their impromptu bye week in Week 4.

4

This number stands out for two different reasons on the defense. No, it’s not the number of takeaways as that was already addressed. The most first down the Steelers gave up on any drive on the day was four. Those four first downs were actually in the second quarter on the drive which ended with Steelers first interception. The other number four for the day was the Steelers held the Jaguars on four different drives where they did not achieve a first down—three ended with punts while one was a turnover on downs.

14

Although the scoring percentage is not as high as the Steelers have had throughout the season, they did manage to put up 14 points on the scoreboard coming off of their takeaways. The Steelers first interception on the day by Minkah Fitzpatrick led to a drive which resulted in a Benny Snell Jr. rushing touchdown. The other score following a takeaway came from Terrell Edmunds second interception which led to the Eric Ebron touchdown. The two drives following a turnover which did not end in points were the Steelers interception where they should have at least had a field goal attempt, and a late punt after the Steelers ran the ball three times with Ben Roethlisberger out of the game.

206

Not only did the Steelers have a good day somewhat containing the Jaguars running game, they held them to barely 200 yards of offense. With 206 total yards, it was the fewest amount Steelers have given up in 2020.

5

Ben Roethlisberger continues to spread the ball around through the passing game. Although Diontae Johnson did have 12 receptions for 111 yards, there were five different Steelers who had at least four receptions on the day. Other than Johnson, Chase Claypool, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Eric Ebron, And Ray-Ray McCloud each had 4 receptions on the day. As for the Jaguars, D.J. Chark was the only player to reach 4 receptions.

106

For the first time in five games, the Pittsburgh Steelers went over 100 yards rushing on the day. With a total of 106 yards, there were three carries for -4 yards as a result of Mason Rudolph taking a knee to end the game. James Conner had an impressive 89 yards on 13 carries for a 6.8 yards per carry average.

10

Rookie Chase Claypool scored his 10th touchdown of the 2020 season on Sunday. With eight receiving touchdowns and two coming via the rush, Claypool is the only player in the Super Bowl era to score 10 touchdowns in his first 10 NFL games.

So there are some numbers to help evaluate the Steelers’ performance Sunday against the Jaguars. Once again, it was not a perfect performance and there are still things in which the Steelers can improve. But scoring 27 straight points, holding their opponents out of the end zone, and coming up with four interceptions is more than enough to build on going into a short week.

There were so many more numbers than the ones listed above. Were there any other numbers which stood out to you? Please leave your answers in the comments below.

Steelers players take to social media to talk about their win over the Jaguars

Behind the Steel Curtain - Mon, 11/23/2020 - 6:00am
Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

Members of the Pittsburgh Steelers take to social media after their win over the Jaguars in Week 11.

The Pittsburgh Steelers have won their tenth game of the regular season! After their latest win moves their record to 10-0 for the 2020 regular season after beating the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 11.

Following the Steelers’ win, players took to social media to celebrate the big win over the AFC opponent.

Take a look at what was said on different platforms following the game! I also added some interesting video which I felt fans might enjoy.

(Editor’s Note: This article may be updated as more players take to social media to talk about the team’s victory.)

Built different pic.twitter.com/yIW1VCHdEg

— Diontae Johnson (@Juiceup__3) November 23, 2020

My spirit animal... pic.twitter.com/g2ZEj4cjuR

— Zach Banner (@ZBNFL) November 23, 2020

10-0 ✅ #HereWeGo pic.twitter.com/KZZe2XAMdn

— JuJu Smith-Schuster (@TeamJuJu) November 22, 2020

10-0!!!! Great Team Win!! #SteelerNation #HereWeGo

— Mike Hilton (@MikeHilton_28) November 22, 2020

Got the only present I wanted today: 10-0

— JuJu Smith-Schuster (@TeamJuJu) November 22, 2020

Ima be fine!! Scared myself though..... not gona lie!
10-0 vibes!!!!

— Joe Haden (@joehaden23) November 22, 2020

Thankful n blessed..

— James Conner (@JamesConner_) November 22, 2020

I love this team

— Chase Claypool (@ChaseClaypool) November 22, 2020

Just needed an opportunity GREAT TEAM WIN. 10-0 pic.twitter.com/fnUbCtgcmK

— Chukwuma Okorafor (@Chuks__76) November 22, 2020

Out there wit a purpose errr time https://t.co/EIfXfG5COw

— Diontae Johnson (@Juiceup__3) November 23, 2020

we STILLL haven’t lost yet as @steelers https://t.co/RFfoiEgCi3

— Eric Ebron (@Ebron85) November 22, 2020

10-0 ‼️‼️ Love this team!! Let’s keep it rolling steeler nation #G2G #HereWeGo

— Alex Highsmith (@highsmith34) November 23, 2020

I see why they call it a Trap game.... lol cue the Bankroll.

— Vince Williams (@VinnyVidiVici98) November 22, 2020

10-0 ‼️‼️‼️‼️‼️ #HereWeGo

— Mr SNELL YA LATER (@benny_snell) November 22, 2020

10-0

— Isaiah D. Buggs (@BigPooh_91) November 22, 2020

10-0!!!!!

— Zach Banner (@ZBNFL) November 22, 2020

10-0 n’at

— Brett Keisel (@bkeisel99) November 22, 2020

10-0 baby!! #HereWeGo

— Jerome Bettis (@JeromeBettis36) November 22, 2020

10-0!! #HereWeGo

— Arthur Moats (@dabody52) November 22, 2020

Post-Game Podcast: The Steelers take away Jacksonville’s day 27-3

Behind the Steel Curtain - Mon, 11/23/2020 - 5:30am

Join BTSC for immediate reaction after the Steelers road contest against the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Was it the domination that fans wanted out of the undefeated Steelers? No. But the Steelers are 10-0 and got the job done in matter of fact fashion. In doing so, the black-and-gold’s identity as closers are becoming more and more forged in steel with the 27-3 win. Jeff Hartman, Dave Schofield and Bryan Anthony Davis break down the game like no one else does on the latest podcast, The Steelers Post-Game Show.

If you haven’t heard, we have a YouTube channel, and the main reason for this is to increase the sound quality on our shows. But if you’re a visual learner you can watch the show below. Be sure to subscribe to our channel.

If you missed the live show, be sure to check out all episodes on the following platforms:

Apple Users: CLICK HERE

Spotify: CLICK HERE

Google Play: CLICK HERE

If you’re old-school and just want the audio, you can listen to it in the player below.

Part 1:

Part 2:

Post-Game Sound: Hear from Steelers coaches and players after the Week 11 win over the Jaguars

Behind the Steel Curtain - Mon, 11/23/2020 - 4:30am
Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers were winners in Week 10 of the NFL regular season. Take a look and listen to what was said after the game.

The Pittsburgh Steelers were winners in the Week 11 of the regular season after a 27-3 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars Sunday.

After the game, there was plenty of video/audio to take in via Zoom. Here at BTSC we try to gather as much information as possible for those fans who might not be on social media and see this on a weekly basis.

Therefore, in the post-game sound article you will hear from head coach Mike Tomlin, and a myriad of other players as the Steelers official Twitter account gives fans the press conferences from all who participated on Monday.

Enjoy the content and be sure to stay with BTSC for all things black-and-gold as they look to continue to put tallies in the win column this season:

Mike Tomlin Press Conference

#LIVE: Coach Tomlin addresses the media following our win over the Jaguars.@UPMC https://t.co/eCPpbxO1W1

— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) November 22, 2020

Ben Roethlisberger Press Conference

#LIVE: Ben Roethlisberger addresses the media following our win over Jacksonville.@UPMC https://t.co/0uJrvKjj44

— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) November 22, 2020

Minkah Fitzpatrick On-Field Interview

"We've got the plane ride home then we'll probably start watching film tonight on Baltimore."

Minkah Fitzpatrick is happy with the @Steelers’ W but is already focused on the Ravens. (@EvanWashburn) pic.twitter.com/SusROaFAhn

— NFLonCBS (@NFLonCBS) November 22, 2020

Mike Tomlin and his MAC boys continue to prove everyone wrong

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 10:23pm
Photo by Frederick Breedon/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers love their MAC football, regardless of what Mike Tomlin says.

The Pittsburgh Steelers are not afraid of drafting players from smaller conferences. To be specific, they are not afraid to draft, and use, players from the Mid-American Conference (MAC).

Why is this all of a sudden news worthy? It all started after a comment Mike Tomlin made on Tuesday during his press conference leading up to the Week 11 game with the Jacksonville Jaguars. When asked if he was afraid this could be construed as a “trap game”, Tomlin responded with this:

“I understand that that is things that you guys like to talk about, but this is the NFL. More than anything, the guys know my attitude regarding that. We are not a Big Ten team playing a MAC opponent this week.”

Don’t think the players on the roster who attended a MAC school didn’t hear this and take exception?

Think again...the Steelers offensive captain, Ben Roethlisberger who attended Miami of Ohio, had this to say during his Wednesday media availability.

“I haven’t had a chance to get him yet. He mentioned it again in the team meeting, too, and I wasn’t too happy about that. I will get him back, don’t worry. I have to figure out what conference William & Mary is in. We will say something about that.”

Roethlisberger isn’t the only Steelers player who hails from a MAC school. In fact, the following players are on the active roster who attended MAC schools:

Ben Roethlisberger (Miami OH)
Robert Spillane (Western Michigan)
Chukwuma Okorafor (Western Michigan)
Diontae Johnson (Toledo)
Ola Adeniyi (Toledo)

After the team’s 27-3 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 11, Tomlin took the time to take a photo with his MAC players. Roethlisberger doesn’t look to pleased with the situation...

Mike Tomlin and the Mac Guys#SteelersNation #Steelers @_BigBen7 pic.twitter.com/w8Tij7GQ71

— Brian (@fintrojansports) November 22, 2020

There can be a hesitance within organizations to overlook players who attended MAC, or other small conference, schools, but the Steelers have bucked this trend in recent years. In 2020, Tomlin’s words about the MAC certainly don’t match his actions as the above players have all had big roles in the team’s success this season.

Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they prepare for the Baltimore Ravens on Thanksgiving night at Heinz Field.

The historical significance of the Steelers 10-0 start

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 4:30pm
Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Steelers are continuing to extend their franchise-record start to a season.

The Pittsburgh Steelers have started their 2020 NFL season with a record of 10-0. After a dominating road victory, the Steelers return home for a quick turnaround for a Thanksgiving night game so the time to enjoy getting their tenth victory on the season will be short lived.

It is the first time in franchise history the Steelers have won their first ten games of the season. The record which is continuing to grow replaces the 1978 Steelers who began their season 7-0 and went on to win Super Bowl XIII over the Dallas Cowboys.

Last week we highlighted the Steelers 9-0 start. Now it’s time to update the numbers now that they have pushed their record to 10-0.

In NFL history, there have been 26 teams who have previously started their season 10-0. Since the 1970 NFL merger, there have been 16 teams start 10-0 with all 16 of them making the playoffs. The last team to start 10-0 and not make the playoffs was the 1948 San Francisco 49ers of the AAFC who finished 12-2 but did not win their division as the 14-0 Cleveland Browns was the West Division representative.

Since 1970, 10 of the 16 teams who started their season 10-0 made it to the Super Bowl which equates to 62.5% of teams. Out of those 10 teams, 6 of them went on to win the Super Bowl with only one time having two teams meet in the game who had won their first ten games of the season. The only time two teams met in the Super Bowl who both started the season 10-0 was in 2009 when the 13-3 New Orleans Saints defeated the 14-2 Indianapolis Colts.

Should the Steelers push their record to 11-0 after their matchup with the Baltimore Ravens on Thanksgiving night, league history gets into even more elite status. The 11 teams who have started the season winning their first ten games since the 1970 merger have made the playoffs 100% of the time with 82% making the Super Bowl and 45% winning the championship game.

While starting 10-0 does increase the likelihood of going to the postseason and guarantees a winning season, there is still work to be done. The Steelers host the Ravens in only 4 days and Baltimore is in “must win” mode if they want to have any chance in getting back in the running for the AFC North, yet alone the playoffs. The Steelers have a chance to put their division rivals in a bad spot.

Gobble. Gobble.

Steelers dealing with several key injuries as they prepare for the Ravens on a short week

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 3:40pm
Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers have some key injuries to keep an eye on as they prepare for the Ravens on a short week.

The Pittsburgh Steelers are coming off a big 27-3 win over the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 11 to keep their record a perfect 10-0. But it came at a cost. Throughout the win the Steelers saw several players leave with injury and not return.

After the game, Mike Tomlin recapped the injury situation and didn’t deliver a lot of news, considering the Steelers are now tasked to turn the page quickly to the Baltimore Ravens on Thanksgiving night.

With that said, Tomlin said tight end Zach Gentry suffered a significant knee injury in the early portions of the game. When Tomlin uses terminology like that, especially right after a game, it likely means the player will be lost for the long term.

Other than Gentry, Tomlin said all other injuries would be labeled as “bumps and bruises associated with playing the game of football”. This would include Joe Haden, who left the game with an apparent lower body injury, but was able to go back in the game. In Haden’s stead, Cam Sutton and Justin Layne filled in and played well.

JuJu Smith-Schuster was another player who was visibly injured during the game, and although the team said he could go back in, never did. Smith-Schuster’s injury was labeled as a foot/ankle injury per CBS Sports. With Smith-Schuster out of the game, it was James Washington and Ray-Ray McCloud who stepped up and saw the offense not miss a beat.

Tomlin said the team will not be taking anything for granted on a short week, and they will have to take a wait-and-see approach to practice as the Steelers are tasked with the quick turnaround associated with a Thursday Night Football game.

Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black and gold as they prepare for the Ravens in Week 12.

Knee Jerk Reactions to the Steelers’ 27-3 win over the Jaguars

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 3:15pm
Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The shutout was off the table early, but the Steelers defense shut it down in Jacksonville.

Week 11 of the NFL season and the Pittsburgh Steelers are back out on the road, this time to Jacksonville to take on the Jags. The Steelers are looking more healthy than they’ve been the past few weeks, and what better way to try to get their record to 10-0 than playing the 1-8 Jags. A lot of Steelers Nation will want to see the Steelers get the running game back on track this week, but I am not necessarily one of them, as all I am looking for is 10-0! Ben Roethlisberger is spreading the ball all over the field and the Defense is playing solid football right now. If the Steelers show up ready to get down to business I don’t see any way the Jags can beat them. I mean they are a bunch of Jags, but the Pittsburgh kind of Jags...can you tell I like calling them Jags? Enough about Jags, let's get to the game (like how I snuck that in there one more time?).

A simple reminder, a knee jerk reaction is an immediate and unthinking, emotional reaction. It’s basically shooting first and apologizing later (forget that, I apologize for none of my emotion I may not actually be from Pittsburgh, but grew up close enough to be a Yinzer). I can safely say that’s a true definition of your’s truly and a good lot of Steelers’ Nation. Here’s my real-time (and possibly a little bit of my son Kyle’s) reactions during the Steelers’ effort to continue the unbeaten streak.

Quarter 1
  • Steelers win the toss and choose to defer. Boswell to kick off.
  • Well the defense isn't going to hold them to zero first downs on third downs this week as the Jaguars convert the third down on their first opportunity.
  • Jacksonville was not so fortunate on their second third down opportunity.
  • Field goal attempt for the Jaguars. Kick is good Jags 3, Steelers 0.
  • I had a feeling Jacksonville was going to try that onside kick. Apparently the Steelers were ready for it as well. Marcus Allen did a nice job taking that ball out of the air.
  • Ben had another ball tipped at the line of scrimmage. There have been so many of those this year.
  • Diontae Johnson misses an easy third down pass from Ben. Diontae has had a lot of balls this year that he should have caught that have hit the ground.
  • Boswell on for a 46-yard field goal attempt. Pulled it left. Makes that drop by Diontae even tougher to swallow.
  • The defense forced three straight incompletions, forcing a fourth down punt from Jacksonville.
  • James Conner with a big run of about 25 yards there. Nice job getting the offense out of a hole.
  • Easy pitch and catch from Roethlisberger to Chase Claypool on 3rd and 6th. I like seeing those easy completions.
  • Until Ben is willing to go play action when when he lines up under center, we will always struggle to run out of that formation.
  • Third down pass broken up, but even if complete Ebron was going to be way short of a first down. Steelers to punt.
  • Bud Dupree almost picked off that pass. It might have gone for a touchdown. But at least the defense holds to a three and out.
  • End of the first quarter, jaguars 3, Steelers 0.
Quarter 2
  • Somehow Conner turned what looked to be lost into gaining 2 to 3 yards.
  • Steelers drive stalls Boswell on to attempt a field goal. Field goal is good. Steelers 3, Jaguars 3.
  • Kyle was throwing a fit over holding on T.J. Watt during that third down pass, but it was tipped and almost picked off by the Steelers. Defense holds to another three and out.
  • Grandpa strong James Washington makes a sideline catch on third and five to keep this drive going.
  • Chase Claypool catches the long pass from Ben Roethlisberger for a touchdown! Steelers now lead 10-3.
  • After the Steelers defense knocking them back 5 yards on first down, we give up a big run on second down and then Steven Nelson picks up a 15-yard penalty on top of it. Not a great start.
  • Jaguars were down near the 10-yard line, pass was deflected high by Tyson Alualu, Minkah picks it off and returns it near the 40. Game changer.
  • James Conner with a Marcus Allen type reversal run for a first down there. That’s the Hall of Fame running back Marcus Allen, not the Steelers LB/S Marcus Allen.
  • Steelers are now faced with a 3rd and 10 just inside of 2 minutes. if there's a time for a 10-plus yard play Steelers need it here.
  • Ben to Diontae again, and got that 10 plus yards. Steelers can use some more points here.
  • Wow, talk about a circus catch. Diontae came up big there to set the Steelers up inside the one.
  • Benny Snell football for the touchdown. Steelers now lead 17-3.
  • Well, Brian Anthony Davis said that Terrell Edmunds would drop a potential interception, but Terrell just proved him wrong by actually getting his hands on it and completing the INT.
  • Claypool draws the deep interference call. Steelers are going to get one shot at the end zone, and then would have to kick the field goal.
  • Ben makes a poor choice, throws a wounded duck into the endzone and instead of getting at least three, the ball's picked off by the Jaguars.
  • End of the first half. Steelers 17, Jags 3. Steelers will receive the second half kickoff.
Quarter 3
  • Touch pass to Ray-Ray McCloud to start the second half loses two yards.
  • Steelers have third and 11 and try that high lob again towards James Washington. Why don't they just try to get a first down instead of throwing these jump balls?
  • Kyle says going three and out to start the second half makes not getting those points at the end of the first half even worse.
  • The defense is giving up a drive, and now Joe Haden is down on the ground, maybe looking at his knee. Not good!
  • It took to the third quarter, but Stephon Tuitt busts through and gets a sack for the Steelers on 3rd and 14. The sack streak continues!
  • A little bit of movement by the Steelers offense, but drive stalls, Jordan Berry with the punt.
  • Thankful to see that Joe Haden is back in the ballgame.
  • Kyle "What the heck Ray-Ray. You had so much space" to the fair catch call.
  • Steelers with a 4th and 1, fake the Jets sweep to Claypool and Conner runs for nice yardage. That's what I like to see to keep drives and moving.
  • A zero yard run, a five yard penalty, and a two yard pass leaves the offense with 3rd and 13. Incomplete pass leads to another Jordan Berry punt. This has been a rather boring third quarter for both sides.
  • Wow. Could they have thrown the flag any later on that play by Edmunds?
  • End of the third quarter score remains the same Steelers 17, Jaguars 3.
Quarter 4
  • Bud Dupree with a sack on 3rd and 10. Steelers will get the ball back.
  • Steelers convert a third and one with a pass to Ebron. what we really need to see here is a sustained drive that ends in points.
  • Two straight incomplete passes and the Steelers look at third and ten again. This is not sustaining drives, this is goofing around and allowing Jacksonville to stay at least a little bit in this game.
  • Steelers go with the high lob on third and long again. Steelers get a slightly controversial pass interference call on that play to keep the drive going.
  • Third down and two and they throw a quick pass to Connor three yards behind the line of scrimmage and they lose two yards on the play. Boswell in to try a field goal from 47 yards. GOOD! Steelers 20, Jaguars 3.
  • Terrell Edmonds making Brian Anthony Davis eat his words as he comes up with his second interception of the game.
  • Ray-Ray makes a nice third down catch, tackle on extra 15 for a helmet hit.
  • I've been saying it all game, and the Steelers finally did it. Been lined up under center fake to hand off and hits Ebron on a skinny post for a touchdown.
  • Steelers 27, Jaguars 3. Kyle says it's now time for Rudolph to have some fun.
  • Minkah Fitzpatrick with his second interception of the game. Big day for the Steelers safeties.
  • Rudolph comes in and hands it off three times to Benny Snell, for a total of nine yards. With a 27 to 3 lead I guess I can't blame them for that.
  • Steelers put in the second string defense, and they hold and force a turnover on downs. Two minute warning.
  • Steelers going victory formation, Kyle was glad to see the Jags weren't a bunch of Jags and start using their timeouts.
  • Three, two, one, win! 10-0!!! Two games in a row where I didn't have a heart attack. I know it's coming up on Thanksgiving but it almost feels like Christmas. Bring on the purple team from Baltimore.

Once again, I just fired off what was going through my head at the time. All reactions were in real time. Basically, it is the equivalent of watching the game with me (and Kyle), you just don’t have to go to another room because I am screaming at the television (sometimes Kyle does). Now time to process it, some quick analyzing for the Scho Bro Show, and then put it behind me as we move toward a short week and the the Baltimore Ravens on Thanksgiving night. Make sure you get your voice heard in the comments below.

Steelers opportunistic defense dominates Jaguars in 27-3 rout

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 3:06pm
Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers dominated the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 11 as they remain perfect on the 2020 regular season.

The Pittsburgh Steelers entered Week 11 as the only undefeated team remaining in the NFL, and their opponent, the Jacksonville Jaguars, could not be further away on the spectrum. Jacksonville beat the Indianapolis Colts in Week 1, and haven’t won a game since. Nonetheless, records mean very little historically when these two teams meet.

The Steelers were winners of the coin toss and chose to defer their possession to the second half, giving Jake Luton and company the ball to start the game. Luton came out throwing, and a huge completion for 18 yards on the first play of the game opened things up for the Jaguars’ offense. James Robinson picked up big chunks of yardage, but the drive stalled and Jacksonville settled for a Jake McLaughlin 41-yard field goal to make the score 3-0 with 10:57 left in the first quarter.

Jacksonville, with nothing to lose, went for an onside kick on the ensuing play, but the ball was fielded cleanly by Marcus Allen. The Steelers’ first offensive possession started in Jacksonville territory, and despite moving the ball into field goal range, Chris Boswell pulled the field goal left.

Luton and company were not able to add to their lead, and were forced to punt for the first time of the game. After pinning the Steelers at their own 5-yard line, James Conner broke off a 25-yard run to give the offense some breathing room. However, the drive would stall and Pittsburgh would have to settle for flipping the field.

A three and out gave the ball right back to the Steelers to end the quarter. The Steelers were able to put together an impressive drive to start the second quarter. A great mix of James Conner runs and Ben Roethlisberger completions moved the ball near the red-zone; however, when the field shortened the play calling got predictable and Chris Boswell was called on to tie the game 3-3 with 10:50 left in the second quarter.

After a three and out, Pittsburgh’s offense continued to warm up as Roethlisberger started to orchestrate a high tempo attack. Passes to Dionate Johnson and James Washington moved the ball on the cusp of the red-zone, but it was a beautiful pass to Chase Claypool for the touchdown which broke the stalemate.

.@ChaseClaypool is always open

CBS https://t.co/tI5aUTu7te pic.twitter.com/lW22Y7zAAD

— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) November 22, 2020

Chris Boswell nailed the point after, making the score 10-3 with 7:00 left in the first half.

Jake Luton had the Jaguars on the move with their next drive, and when they reached the red-zone, and the field shortened, it was the Steelers’ defense who made a big play. Luton’s pass was tipped by Tyson Alualu and intercepted by Minkah Fitzpatrick. Fitzpatrick’s return put the Steelers near midfield with 2:57 left in the first half.

Our ball‼️@minkfitz_21 | CBS https://t.co/tI5aUTu7te pic.twitter.com/G54pdVPDas

— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) November 22, 2020

Looking to take advantage of the turnover, Roethlisberger completed big passes to Diontae Johnson on two occasions to move the ball to the goal line. On the first play on the goal line, it was Benny Snell Jr. who plunged into the end zone for the second Steelers touchdown of the quarter. Boswell was good for the extra point, making the score 17-3 with 44 seconds left in the half.

The Jaguars weren’t about to sit on the football, and decided to try and move into field goal range in the waning moments of the first half. What resulted from this decision was a Jake Luton interception to Terrell Edmunds with 28 seconds left in the half. With two timeouts remaining, the Steelers get a defensive pass interference call to move the ball into field goal range. However, with 9 seconds left, and a timeout remaining, Roethlisberger’s pass was intercepted in the end zone to end the half.

Receiving the football to start the second half, the Steelers’ offense was not able to even muster a positive yard before Jordan Berry was called on the punt the ball away. Jake Luton continued to show poise in the pocket, but on 3rd and 14 was sacked by Stephon Tuitt to end the threat and force a punt.

After both teams exchanged several punts, the 17-3 score would carry over into the final quarter of the contest. The boring play would continue until the Steelers’ offense made enough plays to get into Chris Boswell’s field goal range. The 47-yard kick was good, giving the Steelers a 20-3 lead with 10:21 left in regulation.

The Jaguars’ next possession resulted in Luton throwing his third interception of the game, a beautiful play by Terrell Edmunds, to give the ball right back to the Steelers’ offense.

INT #️⃣2️⃣ for @rell_island6

CBS https://t.co/tI5aUTu7te pic.twitter.com/foVQRtepPg

— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) November 22, 2020

The Steelers wasted little time turning the takeaway into points. After a nice completion to Ray-Ray McCloud moved the Steelers into field goal range, Ben Roethlisberge threw a bullet to Eric Ebron down the seam for the touchdown.

Right on target @Ebron85 | CBS https://t.co/tI5aUTu7te pic.twitter.com/zd1FBAYciJ

— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) November 22, 2020

The Jaguars, grasping to dear life, couldn’t get out of their own way as Luton was intercepted by Minkah Fitzpatrick. His fourth interception of the game, and Fitzpatrick’s second interception of the contest.

Mason Rudolph entered the game in garbage time, and the Steelers were able to kill the clock en route to the victory.

The Steelers win moves their record to 10-0 on the season as they have to turn the page quickly to the Baltimore Ravens on Thursday night in Week 12. Stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black and gold as they roll through the 2020 regular season.

Steelers vs. Jaguars, Week 11: 3rd quarter in-game update

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 2:21pm
Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers are back, and we keep you up to date with those who aren’t able to watch the game live.

1st Quarter In-Game Update

2nd Quarter In-Game Update

Receiving the football to start the second half, the Steelers’ offense was not able to even muster a positive yard before Jordan Berry was called on the punt the ball away. Jake Luton continued to show poise in the pocket, but on 3rd and 14 was sacked by Stephon Tuitt to end the threat and force a punt.

After both teams exchanged several punts, the 17-3 score would carry over into the final quarter of the contest.

Steelers vs. Jaguars: Second-half live updates, injury news and open thread

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 1:36pm
Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images

The Steelers are back on the gridiron! The 2020 regular season continues with the Steelers and Jaguars locking horns in Week 11. Keep tabs on all things Black-and-gold with our updates and open thread.

The Pittsburgh Steelers are back on the field, and this time for the tenth time in the 2020 regular season as they prepare to face off against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 11 in Duval county.

Throughout the game, be sure to check back here for score updates, injury news and any breaking news from those on the sidelines following the team live. You can also follow along in the Twitter feed below.

For those wondering, you can enjoy some lively commentary with the best Steelers fans across the globe in the open thread for all BTSC members in the comment section below. Let’s remember to keep it clean, respect everyone’s thoughts and ideas, and ultimately remember we’re all here for the same reason—to root on the Steelers!

In case you haven’t seen it yet, this is a message here from NFL Manager Jeanna Thomas about the new Coral commenting system:

Here are a few features that you might want to include in game day thread articles, to help your community enjoy the game day threads more:

If you change the ‘Sort By’ option to “Oldest,” you can read all the comments in chronological order, and the comment box moves to the bottom. If you leave it as “Newest”, the latest comments will appear at the top.

If you’re using a computer, you can move down the comments using C, and move back up using shift-C by clicking once inside the comments area. This can also be used to ‘load more’ comments.

Under the ‘My Profile’ tab, you can keep track of replies to your comments, and also sign up for email notifications of replies

If you want to auto-show all images/GIFs/Tweets, you can opt into this under My Profile - Preferences

As always, we’re continuing to improve the system, and will be watching how everyone is using it on game days – and if you or your community have suggestions on how we can further improve the game day thread experience, we’d love for you/them to join our commenting feedback group: https://forms.gle/2FTSCHRgnggxH6SR6 or you can email support@coralproject.net.

So enjoy the game and be sure to follow BTSC for all the latest news surrounding the team throughout the game and afterwards!

HERE WE GO STEELERS!

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Steelers vs. Jaguars, Week 11: 2nd quarter in-game update

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 1:28pm
Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers are back, and we keep you up to date with those who aren’t able to watch the game live.

1st Quarter In-Game Update

The Steelers had the ball with their third drive of the game to start the second quarter, and they were able to put together an impressive drive. A great mix of James Conner runs and Ben Roethlisberger completions moved the ball near the red-zone; however, when the field shortened the play calling got predictable and Chris Boswell was called on to tie the game 3-3 with 10:50 left in the second quarter.

After a three and out, Pittsburgh’s offense continued to warm up as Roethlisberger started to orchestrate a high tempo attack. Passes to Dionate Johnson and James Washington moved the ball on the cusp of the red-zone, but it was a beautiful pass to Chase Claypool for the touchdown which broke the stalemate.

.@ChaseClaypool is always open

CBS https://t.co/tI5aUTu7te pic.twitter.com/lW22Y7zAAD

— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) November 22, 2020

Chris Boswell nailed the point after, making the score 10-3 with 7:00 left in the first half.

Jake Luton had the Jaguars on the move with their next drive, and when they reached the red-zone, and the field shortened, it was the Steelers’ defense who made a big play. Luton’s pass was tipped by Tyson Alualu and intercepted by Minkah Fitzpatrick. Fitzpatrick’s return put the Steelers near midfield with 2:57 left in the first half.

Our ball‼️@minkfitz_21 | CBS https://t.co/tI5aUTu7te pic.twitter.com/G54pdVPDas

— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) November 22, 2020

Looking to take advantage of the turnover, Roethlisberger completed big passes to Diontae Johnson on two occasions to move the ball to the goal line. On the first play on the goal line, it was Benny Snell Jr. who plunged into the endzone for the second Steelers touchdown of the quarter. Boswell was good for the extra point, making the score 17-3 with 44 seconds left in the half.

The Jaguars weren’t about to sit on the football, and decided to try and move into field goal range in the waning moments of the first half. What resulted from this decision was a Jake Luton interception to Terrell Edmunds with 28 seconds left in the half. With two timeouts remaining, the Steelers get a defensive pass interference call to move the ball into field goal range. However, with 9 seconds left, and a timeout remaining, Roethlisberger’s pass was intercepted in the end zone to end the half.

The Steelers are down to one healthy tight end as Zach Gentry has been ruled out

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 1:03pm
Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

With only two tight ends on the roster for Week 11, Gentry left the game in the first quarter.

The Pittsburgh Steelers are continuing the battle with the Jacksonville Jaguars in Florida for Week 11. Unfortunately, the team will only have one healthy tight end for the remainder of the game as Zach Gentry has left the game due to injury and will not retrun. This per Burt Lauten of the Steelers’ PR Department:

#Steelers TE Zach Gentry sustained a knee injury and will not return to today’s game.

— Burt Lauten (@SteelersPRBurt) November 22, 2020

Gentry sustained a knee injury during the first quarter and was taken to the locker room. In only his second game of the 2020 season, Gentry was inactive for the Steelers’ first eight games but has recently taken the place of Vance McDonald who is currently on the NFL‘s Reserve/COVID-19 List.

With Gentry unavailable, Eric Ebron is left as the Steelers only healthy tight end for the remainder of the day. Although the Steelers sometimes use an extra offensive lineman in their jumbo package at the tight end position, I doubt Ben Roethlisberger will be throwing any passes to Jerald Hawkins.

One other possibility for the Steelers, especially when it comes to the run game, could be the use of Derek Watt lined up on the line of scrimmage for blocking purposes.

Stay tuned to BTSC for continued coverage as the Steelers take on the Jaguars as they look to move their record to 10-0 for the 2020 season.

Steelers vs. Jaguars, Week 11: 1st quarter in-game update

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 12:38pm
Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Steelers are back, and we keep you up to date with those who aren’t able to watch the game live.

The Pittsburgh Steelers entered Week 11 as the only undefeated team remaining in the NFL, and their opponent, the Jacksonville Jaguars, could not be further away on the spectrum. Jacksonville beat the Indianapolis Colts in Week 1, and haven’t won a game since. Nonetheless, records mean very little historically when these two teams meet.

The Steelers were winners of the coin toss and chose to defer their possession to the second half, giving Jake Luton and company the ball to start the game. Luton came out throwing, and a huge completion for 18 yards on the first play of the game opened things up for the Jaguars’ offense. James Robinson picked up big chunks of yardage, but the drive stalled and Jacksonville settled for a Jake McLaughlin 41-yard field goal to make the score 3-0 with 10:57 left in the first quarter.

Jacksonville, with nothing to lose, went for an onside kick on the ensuing play, but the ball was fielded cleanly by Marcus Allen. The Steelers’ first offensive possession started in Jacksonville territory, and despite moving the ball into field goal range, Chris Boswell pulled the field goal left.

Luton and company were not able to add to their lead, and were forced to punt for the first time of the game. After pinning the Steelers at their own 5-yard line, James Conner broke off a 25-yard run to give the offense some breathing room. However, the drive would stall and Pittsburgh would have to settle for flipping the field.

A three and out gave the ball right back to the Steelers to end the quarter.

Steelers vs. Jaguars: First-half live updates, injury news and open thread

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 11:45am
Photo by Todd Olszewski/Getty Images

The Steelers are back on the gridiron! The 2020 regular season continues with the Steelers and Jaguars locking horns in Week 11. Keep tabs on all things Black-and-gold with our updates and open thread.

The Pittsburgh Steelers are back on the field, and this time for the tenth time in the 2020 regular season as they prepare to face off against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 11 in Duval county.

Throughout the game, be sure to check back here for score updates, injury news and any breaking news from those on the sidelines following the team live. You can also follow along in the Twitter feed below.

For those wondering, you can enjoy some lively commentary with the best Steelers fans across the globe in the open thread for all BTSC members in the comment section below. Let’s remember to keep it clean, respect everyone’s thoughts and ideas, and ultimately remember we’re all here for the same reason—to root on the Steelers!

In case you haven’t seen it yet, this is a message here from NFL Manager Jeanna Thomas about the new Coral commenting system:

Here are a few features that you might want to include in game day thread articles, to help your community enjoy the game day threads more:

If you change the ‘Sort By’ option to “Oldest,” you can read all the comments in chronological order, and the comment box moves to the bottom. If you leave it as “Newest”, the latest comments will appear at the top.

If you’re using a computer, you can move down the comments using C, and move back up using shift-C by clicking once inside the comments area. This can also be used to ‘load more’ comments.

Under the ‘My Profile’ tab, you can keep track of replies to your comments, and also sign up for email notifications of replies

If you want to auto-show all images/GIFs/Tweets, you can opt into this under My Profile - Preferences

As always, we’re continuing to improve the system, and will be watching how everyone is using it on game days – and if you or your community have suggestions on how we can further improve the game day thread experience, we’d love for you/them to join our commenting feedback group: https://forms.gle/2FTSCHRgnggxH6SR6 or you can email support@coralproject.net.

So enjoy the game and be sure to follow BTSC for all the latest news surrounding the team throughout the game and afterwards!

HERE WE GO STEELERS!

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No surprises with the Steelers Week 11 inactive list as Mike Hilton returns

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 10:31am
Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images

There are only two healthy scratches as three players were ruled out on Friday.

The Pittsburgh Steelers have released their inactives for their Week 11 game against the Jacksonville Jaguars. There were three players ruled out due to injury prior to the game. Because no players were elevated off of the practice squad this week, the list is made up of 5 players with 3 being due to injury and 2 as healthy scratches.

Inactives for #Steelers today vs. Jacksonville: QB Dobbs, FB TEdmunds, RB Samuels, OLB Elliott, NT Buggs

— Bob Labriola (@BobLabriola) November 22, 2020

First of all, for the first time in five weeks Mike Hilton’s name is not on the inactive list. After practicing fully every day this week, Hilton returns to the Steelers defense for the first time since the Steelers played the Cleveland Browns in Week 6.

The three players who were already known to be on the inactive list since they were ruled out on Friday were running backs Jaylen Samuels and Trey Edmunds along with linebacker Jayrone Elliott. Samuels and Edmunds are each dealing with a leg injury and did not practice all week. Elliott missed practice due to illness all week but has not been placed on the Reserve/COVID-19 List.

The one player left who has been on the inactive list every week in 2020 is quarterback Josh Dobbs. Zach Gentry got a helmet for the first time this season in Week 10 with Vance McDonald out on the Reserve/COVID-19 List. With McDonald still out, Gentry is active for his second game of 2020.

The final player on the Steelers inactive list is defensive tackle Isaiah Buggs. Buggs missed the Steelers Week 10 matchup against the Bengals with an ankle injury. With the Steelers now carrying seven defensive tackles on the 53-man roster with the activation of Chris Wormley off the Reserve/Injured List on Saturday, someone was going to be the odd man out. It looks as if Buggs will get another week to get his ankle right.

As for the Jaguars inactives, they can be seen below courtesy of ESPN’s Michael DiRocco. As expected, quarterback Gardner Minshew II will not play. Cornerback Sidney Jones IV is also inactive which only makes the situation worse for Jacksonville after 2020 top 10 draft pick C.J. Henderson was placed on IR this week.

Jaguars inactives: QB Gardner Minshew, WR Laviska Shenault, TE James O'Shaughnessy, CB Sidney Jones, LB Quincy Williams, TE Tyler Davis, OK K.C. McDermott. Jones being out is a blow because he's been the Jaguars' best corner. With CB C.J. Henderson on... https://t.co/KnChGuaGHH

— Michael DiRocco (@ESPNdirocco) November 22, 2020

Who is the Steelers’ X-Factor in Week 11 vs. the Jaguars?

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 10:00am
Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images

Who is the X-Factor for the Steelers in their Week 11 game vs. the Jaguars?

The Pittsburgh Steelers are preparing for the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 11. It is the Steelers’ latest road game after a home game in Week 10, and hopefully their tenth win of the 2020 regular season.

When looking at the matchup between AFC foes, there are players who can be viewed as ‘X-Factors’.

What is an ‘X-Factor’?

I would describe an ‘X-Factor’ as a player who can truly alter the outcome of the game, single-handedly. Not just a plug and play type player, but a player who always has to be accounted for, no matter what.

As a clear-cut example of what an ‘X-Factor’ player would look like, think Troy Polamalu. Polamalu’s skill set made him a force to be reckoned with on every play. So, who are the ‘X-Factors’ for the Steelers Week 11 game vs. Jacksonville?

Let’s take a look...

Jeff Hartman

X-Factor: T.J. Watt

Why: Watt is someone who is an X-Factor every time he steps on the field, but let’s be honest, we haven’t seen the best from Trent Jordan Watt yet. We, as fans, have not witnessed him have a game where he completely takes over. A game where he records 3, o more, sacks.

This game in Week 11 could be the game, and Jake Luton might be seeing a lot of this on Sunday:

2 sacks today for T.J. Watt and 9 on the year.pic.twitter.com/HlKqmWe6Mc

— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) November 15, 2020

The one thing Watt has proven throughout his career in the NFL is he doesn’t have to register sacks to be a game changer. His ability to force fumbles, defend passes at the line of scrimmage, intercept passes and be stingy in the run game make him the monster he has become.

I expect Watt to have a game to remember, and help the Steelers win their 10th game of the season and remain perfect throughout the 2020 regular season.

Dave Schofield

X-Factor: JuJu Smith-Schuster

Why: There’s no secret that the Jacksonville Jaguars are struggling during the 2020 season. Losing eight straight games, they have surrendered at least 24 points in their eight losses with six of those games where they surrendered 30 points or more. Adding significant injuries at cornerback and the placement of 2020 top 10 draft pick C.J. Henderson on the Reserve/Injured List, look for the Steelers to exploit what could be a very weak secondary of the Jaguars. What is the best way to do this? Get the ball to the one guy that the team is going to try to stop. Not only will it be good for Smith-Schuster to get going early, but drawing more attention will also help open up things for his fellow receivers. Plus, it’s his 24th birthday so why not?

Who would be your X-Factor for the Week 11 game in Jacksonville? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below!

How the Jaguars plan to counter the Steelers in Week 11

Behind the Steel Curtain - Sun, 11/22/2020 - 9:30am
Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images

The Steelers and Jaguars square off in Week 11, and it is time to look at how Jacksonville will counter the Steelers on both offense and defense.

When the Pittsburgh Steelers play the Jacksonville Jaguars, an AFC rival, there is not a lot of uncertainty surrounding the matchup.

These two teams know each other well, and although it is their first meeting of the season, there are still some unknowns surrounding the game.

With that said, I reached out to Big Cat Country contributor Ryan O’Bleness and asked him a series of questions about the upcoming game. He was more than generous to provide answers to these questions, and in this article I asked him how the Jaguars plan to counter the Steelers in Week 11?

How will the Jaguars and Jake Luton try to move the ball against the stout Steelers defense, and how will Myles Jack and company try to slow down Ben Roethlisberger and James Conner?

Check out his answers below, and be sure to follow Big Cat Country for the latest news and notes from the other side of the fence leading up to the game at 1:00p.m. ET.

When the Jaguars have the ball, how will they try to move the ball?

With Gardner Minshew still out with a hand injury and rookie Jake Luton starting at quarterback once again for the Jaguars, expect a heavy dose of fellow rookie James Robinson in the running game. Jacksonville leaned on Robinson last week against the Green Bay Packers, as he carried the ball 23 times for 109 yards (4.7 yards per carry) and added two receptions. This was a game many, myself included, thought the Jags would lose by at least three scores, but the team fought hard against a very good Packers team and ended up falling just short, by a final score of 24-20. Robinson’s play was a big reason why the game was so competitive.

The Jaguars will still give Luton plenty of opportunities to pass — he threw it 35 times last week and 38 times the previous week against the Houston Texans — but his play has been inconsistent and he can’t carry the offense by himself. if the Jaguars are going to have success offensively, it starts with Robinson and the ground attack. Robinson actually now holds the record for most yards from scrimmage for an undrafted free agent, with that number now at 917 total yards.

You may also see some things from time-to-time like pre-snap motion and a little bit of deception from offensive coordinator Jay Gruden looking to create any potential matchup advantages he can.

When the Steelers have the ball, how will the Jaguars’ defense attempt to stop Ben Roethlisberger and company?

The Jaguars generally play a cover-three zone in coverage, but the issue with that is the team fails to generate much of a pass rush — ranking dead last in the NFL with just nine sacks (an average of just one per game) — so quarterbacks have been able to pick apart the defense pretty regularly this season. So, basically I expect Roethlisberger and the Pittsburgh wide receivers to have a field day. The Jaguars won’t blitz a ton (hence some of the pass rushing woes) and want to play it safe most of the time with four players rushing and seven in coverage.

Unfortunately, this has not worked out well for Jackosnville. The team struggles in both pass coverage and stopping the run. In fact, the Jaguars rank 31st in defensive DVOA, while ranking in the bottom three of the NFL in points per game allowed, total yards allowed and passing yards allowed. Against the run isn’t much better, ranking 25th at 131.7 yards allowed per contest.

So, quite honestly, I wouldn’t anticipate a lot of stops from Jacksonville’s defense, although the team did surprisingly cause two turnovers last week — picking off Aaron Rodgers once and forcing Davante Adams to fumble. If the Jags have any chance of winning, the defense need to generate takeaways against Big Ben and the Steelers.

Be sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest news and notes surrounding the black and gold as they prepare for the Jacksonville Jaguars at 1:00 p.m. ET in Week 11.

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