Cincinnati Bengals head coach Marvin Lewis separates center Kyle Cook (64) and Pittsburgh Steelers strong safety Troy Polamalu in the second half of an NFL football game, Monday, Sept. 16, 2013, in Cincinnati. Cincinnati won 20-10. (AP Photo/Tom Uhlman)
The Pittsburgh Steelers offense went from being terrible against the Tennessee Titans to pitiful against the Cincinnati Bengals. If they don’t find some kind of way to score points they will be in big trouble this weekend against the Chicago Bears.
The Bears have looked very impressive in come from behind wins of 24-21 over the Bengals and 31-30 over the Minnesota Vikings last week.
Bears’ Quarterback Jay Cutler has been very impressive, but the key for the Bears is can he stay healthy for an entire season. He has been injury prone, which led to coach Lovie Smith being fired despite a 10 win season.
The Bears have a very balanced offense with one of the better ground games in the league to go with the passing attack. And of course they always have a solid defense.
Cutler was 28 of 39 for 290 yards and 3 touchdowns against the Vikings, with his main two targets being wide receiver Brandon Marshall who had 7 catches for 113 yards, and tight end Martellus Bennett who had 7 catches for 76 yards, including the game winning catch and touchdown.
The ground game complimented the passing game beautifully with Matt Forte picking up 90 yards on 19 carries.
Even though the Steelers defense has played outstanding ball they will be thoroughly tested against the Bears potent offense. And if the Steelers fall behind early it may be lights out because it will be hard to come back on this defense.
As for the Steelers offense, they have only been able to score 17 points in their first two games. The wide receivers haven’t been able to get open, they are dropping balls when they do, or Ben Roethlisberger is missing them. So far they haven’t even been close on the long ball.
The ground game is non-existent picking up less than 80 yards in two games. Blame it on the offensive line. Blame it on the running backs. Blame it on the receivers. Blame it on the quarterback. They are all at fault.
One thing for sure is the coaching staff on the offensive side of the ball had better fix something or this 0-2 is going to stretch out to 0-3, 0-4, 0-5…We could easily go into the bye week 0-4.
The young Bengals, 1-1, are expected to battle the Baltimore Ravens for the AFC North division title, with the Steelers looking more and more like the 0-2 Cleveland Browns. Maybe the Steelers will win a game this season.
The Bengals are solid on both sides of the ball with emerging young players blended in with a few veterans. They should continue to get better as the season progresses with these young players merging together. They actually look better than the Ravens, who are having to make some major adjustments with the departure of some key players, Ray Lewis in particular.
The Steelers will face the 0-2 Vikings after the Bears.