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If Levi Brown Plays, Steelers Will Have To Give Him Outside Help

Pro Football Focus has new Pittsburgh Steelers tackle Levi Brown down for 25 sacks allowed in his last 36 games played and that includes the first four games he has played this season with the Arizona Cardinals. I have now gone back and looked at each and every one of those sacks and documented them below along with the down and distance.

On 19 of the sacks, Brown was beaten to the outside and mostly by speed rushers lined up as either 7 or 9 technique. As I pointed out in my post earlier in the week, Brown is not an effective puncher against speed rusher types and he just isn’t nimble enough to get out to the edge against these types either. Robert Quinn blew past him on the outside for three sacks in the season opener and Junior Galette pretty much did the same in week three.

Should Brown wind up playing left tackle for the Steelers, they will almost certainly be forced to give him help in the form of a chipping running back or tight end on obvious passing downs. If not, they will have to hope quarterback Ben Roethlisberger can avoid the pressure from the outside around the edge against teams with speed rushers. If you look at their remaining schedule, you will see that there are a lot of games left against those types of pass rushers.

On the six other sacks that Brown has allowed during that span of games, I have him down for only allowing three via either a tackle/end stunt or a linebacker/end twist or lion game. This is good news as Mike Adams has been horrible thus far at recognizing these. Brown also was only bull-rushed once for a sack.

On two of the sacks allowed, Brown was charged, but in my opinion the quarterback had plenty of time to get rid of the football. These sacks took place right in the middle of the field.

Keep in mind that I only documented the sacks. Over that same span of games, Brown has allowed 63 hurries and 11 quarterback hits and based on the sacks that he has allowed, it’s easy to guess that several of those were also allowed to the outside.

Based on the amount of tape on Brown that I have watched since the trade took place on Wednesday, he is at best a very slight upgrade over Adams and that is the reason the Cardinals gave him up for next to nothing. If the Steelers do not plan on giving him help, Roethlisberger will certainly pay the price at least once or twice a game.

2013
WEEK OPP BEAT SACKER DWN DIST HELP
1 ARZ @ SL OUTSIDE R.Quinn 1 10 N
1 ARZ @ SL OUTSIDE R.Quinn 3 12 N
1 ARZ @ SL OUTSIDE R.Quinn 3 9 N
3 ARZ @ NO OUTSIDE J.Galette 1 10 N
2011
WEEK OPP BEAT SACKER DWN DIST HELP
1 CAR @ ARZ OUTSIDE C.Johnson 1 10 N
1 CAR @ ARZ OUTSIDE G.Hardy 2 20 N
4 NYG @ ARZ INSIDE D.Tollefson 2 15 N
4 NYG @ ARZ OUTSIDE O.Umenyiora 3 6 N
5 ARZ @ MIN OUTSIDE J.Allen 3 8 N
5 ARZ @ MIN OUTSIDE J.Allen 2 13 N
8 ARZ @ BLT OUTSIDE T.Suggs 3 G N
9 SL @ ARZ INSIDE J.Hall 2 7 N
10 ARZ @ PHI OUTSIDE T.Cole 1 10 Y
11 ARZ @ SF INSIDE A.Smith 1 10 Y
17 SEA @ ARZ OUT LB ST D.Hawthorne 2 10 N
2010
WEEK OPP BEAT SACKER DWN DIST HELP
2 ARZ @ ATL TE STUNT J.Babineaux 2 10 N
3 OAK @ ARZ OUTSIDE R.Seymour 3 9 N
4 ARZ @ SD OUTSIDE J.Tucker 3 6 N
4 ARZ @ SD INSIDE STUNT K.Burnett 1 10 N
8 TB @ ARZ OUTSIDE S.White 2 10 N
10 SEA @ ARZ OUTSIDE C.Clemons 1 10 N
10 SEA @ ARZ OUTSIDE C.Clemons 4 10 Y
15 ARZ @ CAR BULLRUSH C.Johnson 1 10 N
16 DAL @ ARZ OUTSIDE D.Ware 2 10 N
17 ARZ @ SF OUTSIDE J.Smith 1 15 N
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