Steelers Should Play Starters Against Cleveland
The last game of the season is meaningless against the Cleveland Browns, but should be used in an effort to fix what is wrong with the offense and more particular the running game. The Steelers should play the starting offensive unit at least a half and should run the ball on every down. They should also give looks of the play being a run and tell the Browns defense before every play that they are running the ball. This is the only way to get better at running the ball, by running the ball more. In my honest opinion, running back Willie Parker is not the guy for this offense. Parker has never shown the ability to consistently run in between the tackles, especially against the better run defenses. Defenses in fact hope Parker does try to run between the tackles as he is usually a running back that goes down on first contact. Everyone has memories of the long Super Bowl run up the middle against the Seahawks in the Super Bowl, but Fast Willie is not as fast anymore and certainly never been known as a bruising type back. Mewelde Moore is in the same mold as Parker, he offers a better pass catching ability, but is still not a 30 carry a game running back. Since Rashard Mendenhall is on the shelf until next season, the Steelers ought to take a hard long look at Gary Russell during the Browns game as well. Russell is more of a mold of a punishing, between the tackle runner and if he can learn to be a better blitz blocker, might be a playoff solution for the Steelers anemic running game. Make no mistake that the Steelers offensive line was built to run block and not pass block 40 times a game. If the running game is not solved come the first playoff game, it very well might be one and done or at the best two and done for the Steelers.