Why the Steelers will win the AFC

Christopher Spinks Roar Guru

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    How far can Big Ben take the Steelers? (AP Photo/Fred Vuich, File)

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    For the average punter, it looks as if the New England Patriots are walking their way to another Super Bowl.

    They have the full package and have been there so many times before. Tom Brady is in his 40s and is still the best quarterback in the game. Maybe ever.

    They are stacked with talent on the offense and defence, and have they added some great players in the offseason. The coaching staff, led by head coach Bill Belichick, have won everything the game offers.

    They continue to grow on their success on a yearly basis.

    But, this won’t be one of those years.

    Enter the Pittsburgh Steelers.

    Don’t get me wrong, the Steelers have had their fair share of success as well. They have six Super Bowls to their name, most recently in 2009, and are frequently in the playoffs and have plenty of superstars of their own.

    Known as the ‘Three B’s’, Ben Roethlisberger, Le’Veon Bell and Antonio Brown have been the cornerstones of this side for many years now. And, yes, they are some of the best players to have played the game. They have carried this team through thick and thin.

    QB Roethlisberger is having a below average season, but he is still among the top QB in the league over his career. Through ten games, Big Ben has a QB rating of only 87.8, placing him in the lower half of the field. Having said that, his team continue to win games. Currently, they sit at 8-2 alongside their AFC rival Patriots.

    Running Back Le’Veon Bell is having an average year, if you call 886 yards rushing and 308 receiving through ten games average. He leads the league in rushing yards again with an average of just over 88 yards a game.

    All these figures equate to Bell making a grand total of 52 first downs. That’s 52 times he has assisted his team in moving downfield. All off his own back. Not bad for a bloke who is only in his fourth year in the big time.

    On the edge, the Steelers have Wide Receiver, Antonio Brown. The final piece in the Three Bs puzzle. Brown leads all receiver with a whopping 1,046 yards to his name, averaging over 100 a game. To put that into perspective, he is 300 yards ahead of this nearest rival, Arizona’s Larry Fitzgerald. Brown could sit out the rest of the season and win the receiving title. But for our sake, let’s hope he doesn’t.

    Ben Roethlisberger throws a mickey.

    (Image: SteelCityHobbies/Wikimedia Commons.)

    There is a lot of talent on this offense, but none have taken the step forward like Rookie Wide Receiver, Juju Smith-Schuster. Smith-Schuster who turns 21 on November 22nd, is currently the youngest starter in the NFL and is leaving some of the old blokes in his wake. He has 33 receptions for 568 at an average of 17 yards a catch. He also boasts some of the best post-touchdown celebrations you will see.

    Between these three, they have amassed a total of 12 touchdowns. That’s more than some teams have scored all year.

    Enough about the offense. We know they can score points and plenty of them. But, can they defend?

    Well yes, they can. The Steelers defence is currently ranked third overall. An incredible achievement from defensive coach Keith Butler in only his third year in the role.

    28-year-old Defensive End, Cameron Heyward has been the star of the show. Seven sacks, 53 yards for loss, puts him among the best in the league. He has 32 total tackles to his name and is a fierce defender.

    Line Backer Vince Williams is chiming in with some stats of his own. A Mammoth 54 tackles and six sacks for a loss of 48 yards has him knocking on the door for a Pro-Bowl call-up.

    All-in-all, this team can beat anyone on their day.

    Their schedule works in their favour also.

    They play the Packers at home, Bengals away, Ravens at home, before they travel to Foxborough to play the Super Bowl Champion and AFC rival, New England Patriots. Their last two games are against the Texans away and the Browns at home in week 17.

    Only one of those games will test the Steelers. The Patriots away. This game is likely to decide who gets week one off in the playoffs.

    All eyes will be on Gillette Stadium in Foxborough for the week 15 clash between these two mighty powers of the AFC.

    Tune in on Monday morning (AEDT) December 18th at 8:25 am for this massive clash.

    Steelers to win in a close one, with the final score being 21-17.

    When the Steelers represent the AFC in the Super Bowl, remember where you heard it first.

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