PITTSBURGH -- The Pittsburgh Steelers are heading into Week 4 1-2 with almost everyone looking at this season as already over.
It's not. And the Steelers have plenty within the building that could turn everything around. Enough to know, that to some degree, they will.
The Defense Only Needs A Little Help
The Steelers have one of the best defenses in the NFL, and it continues to be shown each week. The problem right now is that they're playing insane minutes each week, and while the offense can't be trusted to change that, the defense can adjust.
If the Steelers can find a way to create maybe one or two first downs each drive, all of these games are different. If the defense doesn't need to be on the field for 35 minutes a weekend, they'll force turnovers and find the quarterback - and stop the run.
It's tough to say the offense will be able to find those first downs easily. But if they go all season going three-and-out each drive and nothing changes, everyone in the building should rethink their profession.
Don't Rule Out Najee Harris
Najee Harris might not have much success right now, but he's coming into the season with two injured feet and zero passing game. The offense is the most predictable group in the league, but at some point, Harris will make it click.
Last season, Harris didn't rush for over 50 yards until Week 4. He then finished the season with 1,200 yards on the ground.
It's too early to overreact about a Pro Bowl running back.
The Mike Tomlin Factor
Everyone wants to say "winning season is the new standard" and it shouldn't be, but this team is the most talented group Tomlin has had in a while. No one in the league leads horses to water like the Steelers head coach. The season can't be ruled over until it actually is.
The Steelers will make a few surprising wins and keep themselves alive. The only concern is that last season, Ben Roethlisberger could make the difference when Matt Canada was lacking. This year, Tomlin is going to have to step in or make a change, but we should expect one of those two things to happen before it's too late.
Super Bowl Mindset
Art Rooney II is not going to let a team go 1-8 into the Bye Week. This is a business, and the Steelers preach every single season that it's Super Bowl or bust. They have too much faith in pieces they shouldn't, but they won't let anything let them sink as bad as many believe they could.
At some point, Rooney is going to put his foot down and Tomlin is going to work with him to find a solution. And going back through all five reasons, there's only one alarming factor that needs fixed and the rest will fall into place. It'll get fixed (enough) before the season is over before it started.
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