About an hour ago
I know that 2020 has taken away some of our most beloved traditions. Thankfully, not Steelers football.
At least it’s still on television, even if you can’t go to the games.
And because the Steelers are playing, you get to continue enjoying our favorite Steelers postgame tradition here at “Breakfast With Benz.” It’s our weekly “Feats of Strength” and “Airing of Grievances.”
Often, when the Steelers win, we just stick with the “Feats of Strength.” When they lose, it’s only the “Airing of Grievances.”
In victory, however, when they still manage to give us as many grievances as they did Monday night, we’ve got to vent as well.
The Steelers won their season opener over the New York Giants 26-16. It wasn’t pretty for the first 28 minutes or so. But, as we have chronicled in the past, any win in September is a blessing for this bunch.
So let’s have at it. The good and the bad from Week 1 in 2020.
Oh, and the most important positive note? At least the NFL figured out a way to play the games!
FEATS OF STRENGTH
Beating Barkley: We warned that if New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley got loose, the Giants could pull off an upset.
The Steelers defense wasn’t going to let that happen. He was held to a meager six yards on 15 carries.
“We had a commitment,” said head coach Mike Tomlin. “We weren’t going to be bashful about that commitment. We thought that guy was a catalyst for whatever they were going to do offensively. We put our secondary in harm’s way some to do so. But we embrace that challenge. We needed to stack the line of scrimmage.”
It was the second-lowest rushing total of Barkley’s career.
The linebackers — all of them — were fantastic in all aspects of the game.
T.J. Watt had an interception. Vince Williams had a sack. Devin Bush had seven tackles. Bud Dupree was a disruptive force all night. Ola Adeniyi had a tackle for loss off the bench. And Alex Highsmith got into the backfield once at the end of the game in his debut as well.
Good JuJu: JuJu Smith-Schuster had a strong game with six catches, 69 yards and two touchdowns.
.@TeamJuJu‘s ready for his Pylon Cam close up.
— NFL (@NFL) September 15, 2020
He also threw a key block and jumped on a fumble by Benny Snell.
“Ooh, ooh! Can you Snell that Snell?”: With James Conner leaving the game with an injury (have you heard that sentence before?), Snell came in and contributed mightily.
Aside from that fumble, he had 113 yards on 19 carries.
Dating back to the 2019 season finale in Baltimore, Snell now has 204 yards in his last two games.
The two-minute drill: The Steelers offense was really bad in the first 28 minutes of the game. The offensive line was getting owned at the line of scrimmage. Ben Roethlisberger was off-target. And a lot of the jet motion, misdirection, Matt Canada stuff wasn’t fooling anyone.
But that’s when Ben Roethlisberger got the ball with 1:32 remaining…