2022 Week 10 Steelers Vs Saints – What To Watch For

The Pittsburgh Steeler are back from their break and hoping to catch another team as down on their luck as they are. While the Steelers are looking up—way up—at the 6-3 Baltimore Ravens, however, the New Orleans Saints sitting at 3-6 clearly have plenty to play for yet, trailing the Atlanta Falcons and Tampa Bay Buccaneers by just one game.

In other words, there will certainly be no rolling over in this one for a team that is just a game out of first place in their division, Pittsburgh, in contrast, 3.5 games behind in theirs. But the only way to get in the hunt is to start bagging some pelts, and the Red Rifle has always looked good mounted on the wall.

That would be quarterback Andy Dalton, former longtime starter for the Cincinnati Bengals and thus a player with whom the Steelers have great familiarity. He has started the last six games for the Saints, going 2-4 in that run with 10 touchdown passes to five interceptions but coming off a rough outing against the Ravens in which he was sacked four times.

The Steelers are going to need that kind of action today, something they haven’t had enough of in months, and you know exactly the reason why that is. Will getting T.J. Watt back immediately and substantially improve the pass rush? We can only hope, but that depends on how his body feels and if he has his football legs under him.

Meanwhile, the offense is exploring new territory following the trade of wide receiver Chase Claypool. It remains to be seen how much they continue to rely on three-receiver sets with him now gone, with the only other receivers on the roster being Steven Sims, Miles Boykin, and Gunner Olszewski.

So what about the running game? Specifically, what will the division of labor look like? We keep hearing about Jaylen Warren getting more work in the backfield. Could we see something like a 60-40 split in touches? And will they use more heavy sets to help the running game?

Rookie quarterback Kenny Pickett has had time to reflect, time to simmer, on his first NFL action. How will he respond to his ups and downs after accounting for more than twice as many turnovers than touchdowns?

Defensively, the secondary isn’t where it needs to be. The cornerback position in particular is rather banged up, including their new acquisition, William Jackson III, but at the same time they also get veteran safety Damontae Kazee on the field for the first time this year. What kind of difference can he make?

Last, but not least, we need to talk about kicker. Chris Boswell is on the Reserve/Injured List now. It’s Matthew Wright’s show for at least the next four games as long as he performs well enough not to get cut in the meantime. He’s kicked in the NFL before, including for the Steelers, and he’s largely done a good job, so there is some comfort here, but changing kickers always introduces unknowns.

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