Happy Friday to all of yinz once again and welcome to another September weekend full of football.
The Pittsburgh Steelers will play their 2017 home opener against the Minnesota Vikings on Sunday and this figures to be a much more competitive game than most thought it would be several weeks ago. Sunday’s game certainly should be a good test for the Steelers defense as the Vikings offense is full of weapons at the skill positions.
Before I get to this week’s five questions, I want to make sure to remind all of you that Dan Marino will be featured later this evening on “A Football Life” and that will air on the NFL Network. Personally, I can’t wait to watch it and I’m sure it will include some Steelers references in addition to some old footage from Marino’s college career at the University of Pittsburgh. Make sure to record it if you can’t watch the original airing.
In case you haven’t heard by now, the Cincinnati Bengals are now 0-2 and on Friday they fired offensive coordinator Ken Zampese and replaced him with quarterbacks coach Bill Lazor. The Bengals have yet to score a touchdown so far this season and while that’s entertaining, I can’t help but to remember back to the Steelers 1990 season when they started 1-3 and failed to score an offensive touchdown in those four games. Joe Walton was in his first year as the Steelers offensive coordinator that season and Bubby Brister was the team’s quarterback.
Finally, this coming Monday I will have been married 24 years and to the same woman at that. God bless her.
Ok, on to this week’s five questions and I hope several of you will take time to answer each of them in the comments below.
Have a great weekend and Go Steelers!
Peace and love, peace and love!
1 – Steelers rookie outside linebacker T.J. Watt certainly had respectable NFL debut in the team’s Week 1 win over the Cleveland Browns and especially when you consider he was going up against one of the best left tackles in the league in Joe Thomas. If you can, name me the last Steelers defensive rookie you were this excited about after a FIRST regular season game.
2 – Against the Browns, Steelers running back Le’Veon Bell had a regular season career-low in total yards from scrimmage. With that noted, how many total yards from scrimmage do you predict Bell will have Sunday against the Vikings?
3 – The Steelers ran 9 offensive plays Sunday with four wide receivers, a tight end and no running backs on the field. How many plays will they run against the Vikings using that 01 personnel grouping?
4 – So far during his career, Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger is 9-1 in Pittsburgh home openers that he’s played in and he has averaged nearly 272 yards passing in those ten games. Will Roethlisberger throw for more than 272 yards on Sunday against the Vikings? Predict his final passing yardage number for me.
5 – After seeing Browns rookie quarterback Deshone Kizer play Sunday against the Steelers, how many total wins do you now predict Cleveland to have this year?
Question 1 – Most folks interpreted this question to be who would have the most snaps by the end of the regular season. Vance McDonald was presumed to end up with more snaps than Jesse James by season’s end by a wide (32-13) margin. The median response was that McDonald would play 60% of the offensive snaps by seasons end. Perhaps opinions have changed after the Outlaw’s two touchdown performance against the Browns. McDonald did not catch the only ball thrown his way. In game 1, James played 90% of the offensive snaps and McDonald 30%.
Question 2 – As a group, we believe that the top four defensive linemen will combine for 20 sacks this season. Stephon Tuitt will not be playing for a while so down to three but Cam Heyward and Javon Hargrave were credited with a sack apiece. The D-line is 10% of the way there after game 1.
Question 3 – Most considered Thursday night’s debacle a fluke and predict New England to finish the season at 12-4.
Question 4 – Optimism remains high in the Burgh. Pittsburgh to finish 12-4 according to loyal followers of Steelers Depot.
Question 5 – 18 of 45 respondents predict a rematch between the Steelers and the Patriots in the AFC championship game. 5 believe the Steelers won’t make it that far. Surprisingly, 25 believe the Patriots won’t make it to the conference championship. Either wishful thinking or based on Thursday’s thumping. The other teams mentioned as making it to the AFC championship: Raiders (11); Chiefs (7); Texans (5); Titans (2) and just in case they were serious, Ravens (2); Chargers (2); Browns (1) & Jets (1).
Bonus Question – 19 folks received one point for correctly identifying Steve Johnson as the player Le’Veon Bell would replace when he was activated from the exempt list. Two others got half credit since they named two players.
An additional 9 points will be awarded for the other questions at the end of the season (two points each for questions 1, 3, 4 & 5 and one point for question 2).
Steelers Depot Friday Night Five Questions Leaderboard:
Reader783 is all alone in first place with 4 points.
Eleven are clumped behind in a tie for 2nd place with 3 points apiece.