Going into week seven, there were three undefeated teams, the Seattle Seahawks, the Tennessee Titans, and the Pittsburgh Steelers. With the Steelers and Titans playing each other, someone was no longer going to be undefeated. As it turns out, only one team was able to remain undefeated, and that was the Steelers. It wasn’t the cleanest game, but it was a win. Let’s look at the good and the bad of the game and what lays ahead.
A Defense in Control
Coming into this game, the Steelers knew it was going to be a fast-paced, physical game. The Steelers defense played hard and kept the Titans in check for the majority of the game. Including a huge goal-line stance where Robert Spillane made a huge hit on running back Derrick Henry. Henry was not only stopped then but was held to only 75 yards for the game.
This, in no small way, helped the Steelers remain undefeated. The defense is making plays every week and is now is the holder of the longest active streak in the NFL and the longest streak in the regular season with 63 games in a row with at least one sack. This defense means business, TJ Watt and Vince Williams both recording a sack this week.
The Many Weapons of the Offense
All season long, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has used several different weapons in his arsenal to keep opponents defenses guessing. Week seven was no exception. JuJu Smith-Schuster and Diontae Johnson both had close to one hundred receiving yards. Johnson had two touchdowns. While Benny Snell only ran for two yards in the game but had a touchdown with those two yards. The advantage of running the Titans defense so thin gained the Steelers a 27-7 lead by the third quarter.
Roethlisberger’s stats were not perfect by any means, though. He threw 268 yards with two touchdowns. However, he also had three interceptions. He was the first to say in the post-game interview that those picks were unacceptable. He is never one to make excuses for any bad stats on his part. Even though two of the picks were the result of the ball being deflected by a member of the Titans defense, Roethlisberger will still take the blame, and you can bet he will tweak his throwing just enough to compensate for it.
A Little Luck Never Hurts
An area that should be addressed is how the game almost got away from the Steelers by the fourth quarter. Of course, the two tipped balls for interceptions did not help. And the defense was on the field a lot, and by the end of the game, they could be worn out.
In a perfect game, the offense would have been on the field longer to give the defense a chance to recover. That being said, Roethlisberger and the offense were ready to go to overtime. Ready to make this game another fight to the finish and then some. Surprisingly though, kicker Stephen Gostkowski missed the game-tying field goal. Getting one of the best reactions from the sidelines of the year.
Undefeated, What’s Next?
As the NFL moves on to week eight, the only undefeated team will be moving on to their biggest division rivals, the Baltimore Ravens. Almost every game these two teams play against each other ends with a score margin of seven points or less. Many of those times less than three points. Can the Steelers bring their dominant defense to Baltimore to remain undefeated and keep control of the AFC North? It certainly won’t be an easy game, but these guys are more than capable of keeping this streak going.
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