Three biggest takeaways from Steelers’ ‘TNF’ meltdown

The Steelers (7-6) turned the first team in NFL history to be over .500 and lose back-to-back video games to groups at the very least eight video games underneath .500 with their loss to the Patriots on “Thursday Evening Soccer.” Listed here are the three largest takeaways from Pittsburgh’s Week 14 loss.

Linebacker legal responsibility

The Steelers have seen a number of accidents to their rebuilt inside linebacker room this 12 months, together with two season-ending accidents to Cole Holcomb and Kwon Alexander. They’ve been left to combine and match with gamers who could in any other case be on follow squads or free brokers, which has resulted in two massive video games for opposing tight ends.

Over the previous two weeks, Pittsburgh has allowed a mixed 11 catches for 129 yards and three touchdowns to Patriots TE Hunter Henry and Cardinals TE Trey McBride. Head coach Mike Tomlin is aware of they higher determine the suitable recipe ahead of later.

“We’re minus a few of our folks in there and simply looking for the right mix,” Tomlin told reporters. “We have performed some good tight ends, in order that’s type of been a element of it as nicely.”

QB downside

With second-year QB Kenny Pickett simply to start with phases of therapeutic from his ankle surgical procedure, the Steelers are left with critical questions at quarterback. Backup Mitchell Trubisky’s play was removed from acceptable, throwing for 190 yards, one landing and one interception.

“I assumed he received higher as the sport went on, clearly wasn’t the kind of begin we wanted,” Tomlin mentioned.

Now with just a few further days to organize for his or her subsequent matchup towards the Colts (7-5), the group may think about giving third-string QB Mason Rudolph an opportunity to start out. Though Tomlin mentioned he by no means even thought of making a change at quarterback on “TNF.” Both method, issues may get an entire lot worse earlier than they begin getting higher in Pittsburgh.

Is it time to maneuver on?

It is time to start the dialogue of the Steelers transferring on from Tomlin. It can seemingly take dropping most, if not all, of their remaining video games this season for proprietor and president Artwork Rooney II to think about it, however that could be a practical state of affairs. 

If that occurs, Pittsburgh will miss the playoffs in back-to-back years. The group hasn’t received a playoff recreation underneath Tomlin because the 2016 season.

There isn’t a doubt Tomlin is a good coach and several other groups would line as much as signal him, however typically a change of surroundings is all that is wanted. That could be the case for Tomlin and the Steelers.

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