Steeler Nation is a world-wide army that lives and dies with the Pittsburgh Steelers. The six-time Super Bowl champions are a franchise that considers excellence the only standard, and their fans expect nothing less than hard hitting, top notch football. This is the ultimate Steelers GameDay Preview that all followers of the black and gold come to find everything they need to know about the Steelers and their upcoming opponent! Mike Drakulich (@PghSportsNation), who covers both Pitt football and the Steelers for NGSC Sports, brings you inside the huddle for both teams with the Plan of Attack, The Scoop and score prediction, Game Day information, a detailed breakdown of each team, and an up to date team injury report. Heck, you’ll even know the weather at kickoff. The only thing you’re missing is a game uniform.
Pittsburgh Steelers at Philadelphia Eagles
NFL Week 8
Game-time: Sunday, October 30th, 1:00 PM.
- Vegas line: Philadelphia -10.5
Venue: Lincoln Financial Stadium, Philadelphia, PA.
- Field: Natural Grass
Plan of Attack
- Fire Matt Canada: The worst offensive coordinator in all of football. Till he is replaced with an actual NFL caliber offensive minded guy, the offense will stay stuck being dubbed the ‘Quicksand Offense”.
- Get the ball downfield: By downfield we mean go routes, aka “The Bomb”… something that is nonexistent in the Canada offense. You can prevent the Eagles defense from stacking the box by hitting some shots downfield, especially to play-makers like George Pickens.
- Stop with the stupid penalties: So many times drives have been killed or big plays called back because of egregious penalties. Help your rookie QB out by not being that guy who puts the team in bad situations.
- Contain Jalen Hurts: This will be much easier accomplished with TJ Watt returning to the line-up this week, even if he is on a limited snap count. Hurts is the straw that stirs the Eagle’s drink. Hurts has to be kept from breaking contain and killing the Steelers when he takes off with the ball.
- Create turnovers: I realize that players are in the secondary and not wide receivers for a reason, but for the love of God, when the ball hits you in the hands, you have to make a play and get an interception. The Steelers dropped four last week in Miami that could’ve changed the outcome of the game.
In the world of the Pittsburgh Steelers (2-5) there is good news and bad news, all in the span of a few hours.
It appears as if Defensive Player of the Year in T.J. Watt will return to the line-up, albeit on a limited snap count, but his presence should elevate a defense that has been playing much better the past two games.
“I’m going about my business, doing what I’m asked, seeing how my body responds to the activity,” Watt said. “I feel very encouraged with where I’m at right now.”
The bad news is that kicker Chris Boswell is out, and that could be a big factor in Sunday’s game vs the Philadelphia Eagles (6-0), who look to continue their undefeated season.
Nick Sciba, out of Wake Forest, will be signed to kick. Sciba holds the NCAA record for most consecutive kicks made.
In additional bad news, offensive coordinator Matt Canada is still employed by the Steelers.
To win this game, the Steelers offense has to find a way to score points. Ten points a game isn’t going to cut it even if you have the Steelers All-Time defense on the field. You have to be able to score in this league, and at 15.3 points per game, which is 2nd to last in the NFL, it seems as if Canada’s sell-by date is well past due.
The receivers in the room have been begging for some long balls thrown their way, something that is non-existent in this offense under Canada.
“I just think we need more go balls. Not enough go balls,” said Steelers WR Chase Claypool. “We’ve got playmakers. I haven’t had a go ball all year. George needs more, Diontae Johnson needs more. I’m not saying that’s on the play-calling, I’m just saying we need to try to find a way to scheme it up.”
Running back Najee Harris is another player fed up with how the offense is performing.
“We are trying to come together as a team and turn stuff around,” said Harris. “So hearing stuff that you might not want to hear is probably what we need. We need accountability from this team from the players, we need to execute more, we need to do better rather than just blaming other people. And I think that starts with us.”
The Steelers haven’t won a game in Philadelphia since one of the greatest high school basketball teams ever went 28-0, winning both WPIAL and PIAA State Championships. That team was the Midland Leopards, featuring Stormin’ Norman Van Lier and Simmie Hill. That year was 1965.
So it’s been awhile…
Honestly, I don’t think the Eagles are that good, at least undefeated good. The last time the Eagles played Pittsburgh undefeated this late in the year was Big Ben’s rookie year, where the Steelers squashed Philly, and then did the same to the Patriots the week after.
With Watt’s return, the Steelers should be energized to play Philadelphia with renewed vigor. It’s been a rough going without Watt in the line-up combined with a horrific offense to boot. I think the Steelers will battle hard, but just come up short, unfortunately, again, as they did last week. It wouldn’t it surprise me if Pittsburgh pulled off the upset, but I just can’t see it with the offensive system the Steelers have been burdened with. The only good thing that may come out of another Steelers loss would be the dismissal of Matt Canada during their bye.
Prediction: Eagles 23 Steelers 17
Game Day Information
TV: CBS (Local- KDKA-TV)
- Announcers: Jim Nantz (play-by-play) Tony Romo (analyst) | Tracy Wolfson (sideline)
Local Radio: Pittsburgh- 102.5 WDVE-FM & 970 WBGG-AM
- Announcers: Bill Hillgrove (play-by-play) Craig Wolfley (analyst) | Max Starks (sideline) Missi Matthews (sideline)
National Radio: N/A
Internet broadcast: Steelers Nation Radio (SNR) on Steelers.com
Weather at kickoff: 60 and sunny. Winds out of the E at 4 mph.
Scouting the Pittsburgh Steelers
Overall record: 2-5 (Tied for 3rd in AFC North)
Last game: Miami 16 Steelers 10
Head Coach: Mike Tomlin
- 15th Season with Steelers
- Overall regular-season record: 156-90-2
- Playoff record: 8-9 (Qualified for playoffs 10 times)
- Pittsburgh Steelers Team Roster
- Steelers Team/Individual Statistics
- Pittsburgh Steelers 2022 Schedule
- Points per game: 15.3
- Total yards per game: 311.9
- Passing yards per game: 224
- Rushing yards per game: 87.9
Kenny Pickett | #8
Has had his ups and downs as a rookie starter, but it’s hard to gauge his progress in an offense designed for junior high school.
- Passing Yards: 771 | TD Passes: 2 | INT’s: 7 | Sacked: 6 | Rushing Yards: 61 | Rushing TD’s: 2
Back-up: Mitch Trubisky | #10
- Passing Yards: 797 | TD Passes: 3 | INT’s: 2 | Sacked: 9 | Rushing Yards: 29 | Rushing TD’s: 1
Najee Harris | #22
Has yet to record a 100 yard rushing game. Has been out-rushed by Giants QB Daniel Jones. Needs to make more splash plays.
- Rushing Yards: 329 | Rushing TD’s: 1 | Receptions:18 | Receiving Yards: 86 | Receiving TD’s: 2
Jaylon Warren | #30
Good change of pace back when he comes in for relief of Harris. Should be utilized more often.
- Rushing Yards: 103 | Rushing TD’s: 0 | Receptions: 9 | Receiving Yards: 63 | Receiving TD’s: 0
Derek Watt | #44
- Rushing Yards: 2 | Rushing TD’s: 0 | Receptions: 1 | Receiving Yards: 1 | Receiving TD’s: 0
Diontae Johnson | #18
Has been Pittsburgh’s most consistent threat as a receiver. Needs to stop dropping passes at the absolute worst times.
- Receptions: 38 | Receiving Yards: 337 | Receiving TD’s: 0
George Pickens | #14
A soon to be force in the NFL. Pickens has already made one of the greatest catches of 2022 and may become Kenny Pickett’s favorite target.
- Receptions: 26 | Receiving Yards: 338 | Receiving TD’s: 1
Chase Claypool | #11
Has plenty of tools, but has had more head scratching games than dominating ones. Consistency would be appreciated.
- Receptions: 28 | Receiving Yards: 266 | Receiving TD’s: 1 | Rushing Yards: 55 | Rushing TD’s: 0
Myles Boykin | #82
- Receptions: 1 | Receiving Yards: 11 | Receiving TD’s: 0
Steven Sims | #13
- Receptions: 0 | Receiving Yards: 0 | Receiving TD’s: 0
Pat Friermuth | #88
One of the better tight ends in the game, and should flourish with Pickett at quarterback, and even more when a competent OC is hired.
- Receptions: 28 | Receiving Yards: 310 | Receiving TD’s: 1
Zach Gentry | #81
Gentry is getting better each year and could make some noise in the redzone, especially in two tight end sets.
- Receptions: 11 | Receiving Yards: 89 | Receiving TD’s: 0
Conner Heyward | #83
Plays hard and makes plays when called upon to perform.
- Receptions: 5 | Receiving Yards: 67 | Receiving TD’s: 0
Steelers Defense (Base 3-4)
- Points per game allowed: 23.1
- Total offense yards per game allowed: 394.3
- Passing yards allowed: 275.4
- Rushing yards allowed: 118.9
- Sacks: 12
- Interceptions: 8
DE: Cam Heyward #97 | DT: Tyson Alualu #94 | DE: Chris Wormley #95
- Heyward has 29 tackles and two sacks. Ogunjobi is out this week and Chris Wormley will start.
OLB: T.J. Watt #90 | ILB: Devin Bush #55 | ILB: Myles Jack #51| OLB: Alex Highsmith #56
- Highsmith leads the team with 6.5 sacks. Jack has been a beast and leads the team with 68 tackles. Bush is 2nd on team with 42 tackles. Defensive Player of the Year T.J. Watt returns to the line-up after missing the last six games. Will be on a limited snap count.
CB: Ahkello Witherspoon #25 | SS: Terrell Edmunds #34 | FS: Minkah Fitzpatrick #39 | CB: Cameron Sutton #20
- Fitzpatrick is 3rd on the team with 39 tackles, and a team leading three interceptions. Sutton has two INT’s, while Wallace has one.
Steelers Special Teams
Nick Sciba | #4
Chris Boswell* | #9
One of the best clutch kickers in the game.
- Extra Points: 9-9
- Field Goals: 12-16
- 1-19 yards: 0-0
- 20-29 yards: 3-3
- 30-39 yards: 2-3
- 40-49 yards: 2-4
- 50+ yards: 5-6
Gunner Olszewski | #89
- Average: 15.3 | TD Returns: 0
Gunner Olszewski | #89
- Average: 6.9 | TD Returns: 0
Scouting the Philadelphia Eagles
Overall record: 6-0 (1st in NFC East)
Last game: Philadelphia 26 Dallas 17
Head Coach: Nick Sirianni
- 2nd Season with Philadelphia
- Overall regular-season record: 15-8 | 15-8 with Eagles
- Playoff Record: 0-1 I 0-1 with the Eagles
- Points per game: 26.8
- Total Offense per game: 408.3
- Passing yards per game: 252.3
- Rushing yards per game: 156
Jalen Hurts | #1
Having a breakout season. Good dual threat and very accurate with his throws. Will take off with the ball, especially in the Redzone and goal line situations.
- Passing Yards: 1,514 | TD Passes: 6 | INT’s: 2 | Sacked: 15 | Rushing Yards: 293 | Rushing TD’s: 6
Back-up: Gardner Minshew | #10
Miles Sanders | #26
Playing well this season and is 2nd on the team with four rushing touchdowns.
- Rushing Yards: 485 | Rushing TD’s: 4 | Receptions: 11 | Receiving Yards: 42 | Receiving TD’s: 0
Kenneth Gainwell | #14
- Rushing Yards: 97 | Rushing TD’s: 2 | Receptions: 4 | Receiving Yards: 21 | Receiving TD’s: 0
Boston Scott | #35
- Rushing Yards: 45 | Rushing TD’s: 1 | Receptions: 1 | Receiving Yards: 2 | Receiving TD’s: 0
A.J. Brown | #11
One of Hurts’s favorite targets, leads the team with 503 yards receiving.
- Receptions: 33 | Receiving Yards: 503 | Receiving TD’s: 2
DeVonta Smith | #6
The 2nd year wideout is having a very good season, tied for the team lead with 33 receptions.
- Receptions: 33 | Receiving Yards: 397 | Receiving TD’s: 2
Quez Watkins | #16
- Receptions: 6 | Receiving Yards: 88 | Receiving TD’s: 1
Zach Pascal | #3
- Receptions: 6 | Receiving Yards: 39 | Receiving TD’s: 0
Dave Goedert | #88
One of the top tight ends in the game and often targeted by Hurts when tough yards are needed.
- Receptions: 26 | Receiving Yards: 357 | Receiving TD’s: 1
Jake Stoll | #89
- Receptions: 2 | Receiving Yards: 25 | Receiving TD’s: 0
Eagles Defense (Base 4-3)
- Points per game allowed: 17.5
- Total offense yards per game allowed: 297.8
- Passing yards allowed: 188
- Rushing yards allowed: 109.8
- Sacks: 17
- Interceptions: 9
DE: Brandon Graham #55 | DT: Fletcher Cox #91 | | DT: Javon Hargrave #97 | DE: Robert Quinn #98
- Graham has three sacks, as does Cox. Newly acquired Robert Quinn will start. Quinn has one sack this year, but had 18.5 in 2021.
OLB: Kyzir White #43 | MLB: T.J. Edwards #57 | OLB: Haason Reddick #7
- Edwards leads the team with 55 tackles and has two sacks. White is 2nd with 37 tackles. Reddick leads the team with 4.5 sacks.
CB: Jason Bradberry #24 | SS: Marcus Epps #22 | FS: C.J. Gardner-Johnson #23 | CB: Darius Slay #2
- Gardner-Johnson has three interceptions, as does Darius Slay. Epps is 3rd on the team with 33 tackles.
Eagles Special Teams
Jake Elliott | #4
- Extra Points: 15-16
- Field Goals: 6-7
- 1-19 yards: 0-0
- 20-29 yards: 2-2
- 30-39 yards: 3-3
- 40-49 yards: 0-1
- 50+ yards: 1-1
Britain Covey | #18
- Average: 23 | TD Returns: 0
Britain Covey #18
- Average: 6.6 | TD Returns: 0
Steelers vs Eagles History
Series History: Began in 1936
Overall Record: 29-48-3
- Home: 19-19-1
- Away: 9-27-2
- Neutral: 1-2
- Postseason: 0-1
Streak: Steelers won the last game.
Last regular-season meeting: Steelers Win, 38-29 (Oct. 11, 2020)
Last postseason meeting: Eagles Win, 21-0 (Dec. 21, 1947)
Injury Report (10/29/22)
- Out: K Chris Boswell (Groin), DB Josh Jackson (Groin), DT Larry Ogunjobi (Knee), CB Levi Wallace (Shoulder)
- Doubtful: None
- Questionable: None
- Out: None
- Doubtful: None
- Questionable: DE Brandon Graham (groin)
From Midland, "The Basketball Capital of Pennsylvania", located 35 miles NW of Pittsburgh along the Ohio River. This former steel town was home to storied athletes such as Dave Alston, Norm Van Lier, Simmie Hill, and the legendary 1965 Midland High School Basketball Team.
There's nowhere on earth that is more dedicated to its sports teams like Western Pennsylvania and the city of Pittsburgh. The passion and pride of Pittsburgh's fan base is second to no one. From the NFL, NHL, MLB, NCAA football and basketball, to W.P.I.A.L. high school sports, "The City of Champions" has it all!
As Editor of Pittsburgh SportsNation, Mike Drakulich provides top notch opinions and coverage of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Pittsburgh Penguins, Pittsburgh Pirates, Pitt Panthers football & basketball, Robert Morris Colonials basketball, and Duquesne Dukes basketball, as well as all sports teams that represent Western Pennsylvania, including WPIAL High School Football.
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