In the week ten edition of the Last Word on Steelers Podcast Host Patrick Gelesh and Co-Host Brian Harker start off with evaluating the Steelers health coming off the bye. Brian runs through the injury report and with the exception of Jame Harrison, the Steelers, are entering the second half of the season healthy. They touch on the Detroit Lions game briefly before turning their attention to the week 10 match up against the last place Indianapolis Colts.
First they touch on the Steelers offense and Ben Roethlisberger's recent success against the Colts. He's amassed 1,107 passing yards 13 touchdowns and zero interceptions in his last three games against the Colts. This years Colts have a diminished secondary as is, and coming off the bye, this looks like the game where the Steelers passing game finally gets going. The Colts have the 31st ranked pass defense, and it will be interesting how the Steelers deploy the JuJu Smith-Schuster and Martavis Bryant. Especially after Bryant was deactivated in week eight and Smith-Schuster having so much success against the Lions in his absence. Ironically this game includes the AFC's last two offensive players of the week; Smith-Schuster and the Colts T.Y. Hilton. After looking at the matchups, Patrick and Brian conclude that if the Steelers can control time of posesssion and make the Colts offense have to string together long drives. There's a good chance the Steelers will walk out of Indianapolis with a win.
On the other side of the ball Patrick and Brian breakdown the Steelers defense, who will look to rebound from surrendering over 400 passing yards to the Lions. It's unlikely that Jacoby Brissett and the Colts offense will be able to duplicate that success. But if they do, Colts receiver T.Y. Hilton, who is second in the NFL in receiving yards, would have to have a huge game. Also, the Colts have a banged up offensive line that has surrendered 36 sacks on the year and the Steelers like to bring pressure. Their defense is second in the NFL with 26 sacks. That matchup obviously bodes well for the Steelers who will get Stephon Tuitt, a great pass-rushing defensive lineman, back from injury.
Patrick and Brian then go on to discuss the importance of playing the Colts even though they're not a division rival or playoff contender. This game holds some relevance for the Steelers because the Colts are in the AFC South. Come playoff time, if there's a three way tie, which could happen between three teams like the Steelers, Kansas City Chiefs and New England Patriots, the tie-breaker will be conference record. Right now the Steelers hold the best conference record of those three teams with a 4-1 record.
Patrick Gelesh– A third generation Steelers fan with a Masters in sports management and leadership specializing in football. My mom was lucky enough to witness the immaculate reception live. To me, hard hitting defense is “the beautiful game.”
Brian Harker-Â Born and raised in Johnstown, Pa, Brian currently lives in Wheatfield, Indiana with his wife and two kids. He Has been writing about the Pittsburgh Steelers since 2007 for such entities as Pittsburgh Sports Tavern, Pittsburgh Sports Forum, and SteelerZone, which he created in 2015. He believes that Paige and Walter O'Brien make Team Scorpion the best it can be.