The Steelers' defense had Denver quarterbacks Drew Lock and Jeff Driskel running for their lives at Heinz Field this afternoon, as they compiled seven sacks and 19 quarterback hits.
All-Pro outside linebacker T.J. Watt led the unit with 2.5 sacks, but they were coming from everywhere. Bud Dupree and Tyson Alualu recorded a sack a piece and Cam Heyward had a half-sack. But the defensive backs also jumped in on the action. Mike Hilton sacked Driskel on a nice designed blitz in the second quarter and Terrell Edmunds had a sack on fourth-and-2 at the Steelers' 15-yard line late in the fourth quarter with the Steelers leading 26-21 to turn the ball over on downs and give the ball back to the offense to close out the game.
"We're capable of bringing anybody, except the field corner," Tomlin said. "That is our philosophical approach. We are a blitz group. It's tough to bring the field corner because of the distance he plays from. Anybody else is capable of coming and that is just the code that we live by. It's our personality. We'll bring anyone. We're an attacking group."
Watt in his post-game interview with the media also talked about how blitzing is the Steelers identity.
"You saw that we love to blitz," T.J. Watt said. "If you watch us week in and week out, it doesn't matter what year it is, we blitz. One of our assets is that you have no idea where it's coming from, who it is. I think that's just our team knowing each and every guy's responsibility and we can send anybody. That's the great thing about this defense, we play fast, we play technically sound. We definitely want to play better than we did today."
The Steelers were able to get pressure on 59.6% of the Broncos dropbacks, per Pro Football Focus. The Steelers have had a sack in 59 consecutive games, which is the longest active streak in the NFL and tied for the fourth-longest streak in NFL history.