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Steelers Vs Titans Winners And Losers

Winners and losers from the Pittsburgh Steelers 19-13 win against the Tennessee Titans Sunday.

WINNERS

Defensive Turnovers: The Steelers’ defense played a bend-don’t-break style all game but they came up large with a couple of takeaways. Arthur Maulet and Cam Sutton with big-time forced fumbles in this one while Taco Charlton uses his length to tip a Ryan Tannehill third down pass picked off by Joe Schobert.

Game-changing type plays that get tired legs off the field and gives your offense strong field position. Takeaways are the name of the game and Pittsburgh took advantage today.

TJ Watt/Cam Heyward/Minkah Fitzpatrick: Stars playing like stars, as they have for most of the season. Heyward and Watt with sacks while Fitzpatrick continues to make key, open field tackles with the front seven’s routine issues of stopping the run. Those guys live up to the standard each week.

Terrell Edmunds: There were more complimentary pieces today. Like Edmunds, who chipped in a pair of tackles for loss on screen plays and a downfield pass breakup. By his standard, a good game overall.

Chris Boswell: December at Heinz Field is about the hardest place to kick. Chris Boswell’s leg cuts through all that cold air week after week. His 56 yard attempt was short, hard to blame him, but he nailed three second-half field goals in this one, two of them coming from 45+ yards out. Cool, calm, collected. That’s what you want in a kicker. That’s Boz.

Joe Haden: I know Haden got burned for a would-be long play and/or touchdown earlier in the game. It’s clear he’s not at 100% coming off that foot injury that caused him to miss a month and the guy can’t really run anymore. But Haden made the play of the day, a fourth down stop to win the game. The guy can still hit and tackle, things missing on this defense.

LOSERS

Third Down Offense: 0-5 in the first half, one of several reasons why Tennessee dominated the time of possession battle through the first 30 minutes of play. Pittsburgh repeatedly got themselves into third and longs and even when they found themselves in third and short, they squandered those chances. A 3rd and 1 Trai Turner false start turned into 3rd and 6 and a punt. Pittsburgh has been abysmal on third down their last three games.

Pittsburgh finished the game 2-11 on third down. Those two those conversions came via penalty.

Mike Tomlin: For some very poor first half clock management. With all three Steelers’ timeouts, he led the Titans bleed the second quarter clock, only calling a timeout after a third down stop with 21 seconds left. Pittsburgh got the ball back and moved down the field but were forced to settle for a 56-yard attempt with one-second left. Chris Boswell’s attempt fell just short at Heinz Field. Tons of time wasted there that likely cost this team points. Matters a ton in close, lower-scoring games like this one.

And again, the Steelers have the same issues. Slow starts, shaky run defense followed up by furious comebacks. It’s great to see the team adjust but disappointing the weekly basis it has to occur.

Pressley Harvin III: Harvin’s problems are going from bad to worse. He had a 27 yard punt, a 32 yard boot that went out of bounds, and a 51 yarder returned for 55 yards (plus a James Pierre penalty), a net of -4 yards. That one is less on Harvin, of course, the coverage unit needs to do their job too, but Harvin’s shanks are becoming all the more frequent. Gave Tennessee good field position over and over.

Inconsistency been a problem throughout the year but perhaps he’s hitting the rookie wall and has a dead leg. It sure feels like it. Choosing him over Jordan Berry has not worked out for the team.

Player Compasses: Not enough north/south running today. Receivers and running backs. Diontae Johnson, James Washington, and Najee Harris. Guys gotta put their foot in the ground and get downhill. Lot of yards left on the table in this one. Have to quit the east/west football.

Run Defense: Another 200+ yard performance. It wasn’t as ugly as the Vikings’ game but 201 yards is 201 yards. This is a historically bad run defense and I don’t see that changing much the rest of the way. Pittsburgh have up 4.8 YPC along the way.

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