With their 27-12 win Sunday over the Washington Redskins, the Pittsburgh Steelers have now put together back-to-back wins for the first time this season and part of that credit goes to rookie tackle Mike Adams and third-year running back Jonathan Dwyer.
Both Adams and Dwyer started for a second week in a row on Sunday and both played well above the line. Adamsdid not allow a sack in the game of quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and his run blocking, along with the rest of the Steelers offensive line, provided Dwyer with enough running room for him to record his second consecutive 100 plus yard rushing performance. That marked the first time a Steelers running back has accomplished that feat since Willie Parker last did it in 2008.
Both of the young players were only reserves just a few weeks ago, but injuries to Marcus Gilbert, Rashard Mendenhall, and Isaac Redman in the Week 6 loss to the Tennessee Titans opened up the door for both to be the next men up for the Steelers.
Dwyer, who did suffer a strained quad late in the Sunday win, has now rushed for 229 yards on 34 carries in the last two games after being benched for fumbling in the Week 3 loss to the Oakland Raiders.
Adams, who had a pretty rough go of it in the preseason at left tackle, has settled in nicely now on the right side and could very well be pushing Gilbert, who his likely be sidelined a few more weeks with an ankle injury, for the starting job.
Both Dwyer and Adams have received calculated praise from head coach Mike Tomlin as recent as the post game press conference on Sunday. Tomlin refused to tip his hand as to whether or not Dwyer would start next Sunday against the New York Giants, but it will be hard for the coach to sit the Georgia Tech product assuming his quad checks out next week.