The Pittsburgh Steelers got back into the win column Monday night after beating the Indianapolis Colts 24-17. It was a pretty ugly performance on both sides as both QBs failed to pass for 200 passing yards. However, Pittsburgh managed to be effective yet again on the ground in the running game. Even with RB Najee Harris leaving the game due to an abdomen injury, Pittsburgh rushed for 172 yards on the night with RB Benny Snell Jr. leading the way with 62 yards on 12 carries including the go-ahead TD.
When Tomlin was asked about Snell and his efforts in this game filling in for the injured Najee Harris, Tomlin commended Snell’s readiness when the opportunity presented himself.
“I’m just appreciative of both guys’ efforts, man,” Tomlin said to the media Sunday during his post-game press conference which aired on the team’s YouTube channel. “Sometimes you get battlefield promoted. Guy like Benny Snell became a central part of what were doing offensively, and he was still on punt team, he was still on punt return, he was still on kickoff.”
This was Snell’s first action of the regular season on offense after losing the backup job to Jaylen Warren in the preseason. Warren ended up missing tonight’s game with a hamstring injury, prompting Snell to become the next-man-up if Harris were to get hurt which unfortunately was the case, exiting the game by halftime with an abdominal injury.
Meanwhile, Snell made the most of his opportunity, averaging over five yards a carry while looking explosive and aggressive as a downhill runner, picking up multiple chunk gains against the Colts defense.
Tomlin mentioned the fact that Snell not only earned more of the lead back duties with Harris sidelined, but he continued his role as a core special teams contributor for Pittsburgh. For a player that has been quiet for a majority of the season and is on an expiring contract, it’s great to see Benny Snell Jr. make the most of his opportunity in helping Pittsburgh get the win and advance to 4-7 on the season. Should Najee not be cleared by Sunday and Warren not be fully healed from his hamstring injury, we could see Snell continue his increased role next week against the Atlanta Falcons.