Steelers look to tackle their problems

October, 1, 2013
10/01/13
7:57
AM ET
PITTSBURGH -- Steel City wake-up: morning links

A film review by the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review’s Mark Kaboly confirmed that missed tackles across the board were a major reason the Steelers returned from London with their first 0-4 start since 1968. Cornerback Cortez Allen was the biggest offender in this area as he missed three tackles, including one on Greg Jennings’ 70-yard catch and run for a touchdown.

Dick LeBeau’s defense is predicated on stopping the run and not allowing big plays. The Steelers haven’t done either particularly well, and they need to shore up both areas if they are going to turn their season around.

The film review also showed that as bad as left tackle Mike Adams is playing, the Steelers’ coaches aren’t making it any easier for him. Adams rarely got help from a tight end or a running back on passing plays. That makes no sense considering his struggles and the fact that Adams had to block Jared Allen, one of the best pass-rushers in the game.

The Steelers get back to work today, and they will practice the next two days before a four-day break for the players because of the bye week.

The answers to the Steelers’ myriad problems will have to come from within the organization. Players who are unsigned right now are free agents for a reason. Also, the limitations of a 53-man roster don’t allow coaches to make sweeping changes so don’t expect any from the Steelers despite Mike Tomlin’s terse and thinly veiled warning to his players after the 34-27 loss to the Vikings.

The Steelers did get some good news in regard to their offensive line as it looks like left guard Ramon Foster only sustained a minor chest injury in the Vikings game. Foster has stepped up to lead the beleaguered line, and if the bye week gives the fifth-year veteran ample time to heal, the Steelers have some flexibility at tackle with Kelvin Beachum's ability play there on both the right and left side.

Scott Brown

ESPN Pittsburgh Steelers reporter

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