Updated: Dec 13, 2020
(Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
The Steelers have had 16 drops by the receivers in the last two games and have scored a touchdown on just two of their seven trips inside the red zone. They also rushed for a season-low 21 yards on 14 carries (1.5 average) against Washington and were stopped on five consecutive plays in the second quarter on Washington's 1-yard line that resulted in a turnover on downs. Benny Snell Jr. had three carries for a gain of no yards during Washington's goal-line stand.
The Steelers had another short-yardage blunder in the fourth quarter. On fourth-and-1 from Washington's 28-yard line with the score tied at 17-17 and 4:53 remaining in the game. Roethlisberger dropped back and threw a pass to rookie third-string running back Anthony McFarland Jr. that fell incomplete.
Tomlin was asked at his weekly press conference on Tuesday whether he has considered changing the ways they call plays to be more effective.
"Certainly. We're open to doing anything that's required for us to find the fluidity we once had, and that's just a part of it," Tomlin said. "We have to maintain fluidity as players available to you change. That's one of the things that I really have been focused on and that's really come clear to me. We just have to become a more solid group. The quality of our performance can't depend on the presence of a Maurkice Pouncey or a James Conner or a Vance McDonald and guys like that. We've lost fluidity since we missed some of those guys. To be quite honest with you, that pisses me off because we have to be the type of group that endures regardless of who is available. That's how we construct this group, not only in terms of our acquisition of players but just development of mentality and personality. We have some work ahead of us."
The Steelers scored at least 24 points or more in every game this year except for the last two games where they have scored 19 and 17 points, respectively. The Steelers will look to get back on track on Sunday night against the Buffalo Bills, whose defense allows 375.5 yards per game, which ranks 21st in the league. Buffalo also gives up 25.5 points per game, which ranks 18th in the NFL.