Philadelphia Eagles: 2 Steelers defensive stats Birds fans won’t like

Deshaun Watson #4, T.J. Watt #90 (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
Deshaun Watson #4, T.J. Watt #90 (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) /

Here are two final thoughts for Philadelphia Eagles fans about the Steelers ‘D’.

You’ve heard about them all week if you’re a Philadelphia Eagles fan. If you weren’t careful, and all you did was pay attention to tweets and what people are saying on ESPN, you might allow yourselves to believe that the Pittsburgh Steelers have found some way to resurrect the ‘Steel Curtain’.

Oh, they’re good. No one is saying that they aren’t but they gave up 21 points in both of their last two on-field appearances, and that came in games versus the sometimes offensively-inept Denver Broncos and Houston Texans.

Keep in mind the fact that Drew Lock got knocked out of Week 2’s game so that vaunted Steelers defense gave up 256 passing yards and two touchdowns to Jeff Driskel, who didn’t even know that he was going to be playing. Sure, he also threw an interception, and you’d expect more the next week from Houston’s DeShaun Watson, but his results were similar to Driskel’s.

Watson threw 19 completions on 27 passes with two touchdowns and a pick while Driskel’s two TDs and a pick came on 19 of 34 passing. Philly will have some opportunities to score points. There are a couple of factors that may come into play though.

1. The Philadelphia Eagles’ pass rush isn’t disrupting any quarterback’s rhythm.

Everyone’s been very impressed with the Eagles’ pass rush and rightfully so. In Week 5 versus the San Francisco 49ers, the ‘Birds’ got to San Francisco’s quarterbacks a total of 20 times. That resulted in five sacks and 15 additional quarterback hits.

For the season, Philly has registered 17 sacks and 43 additional pressures. After Week 4, that was good enough for first place and eighth place respectively in those categories. The problem is opposing quarterbacks are still completing 68 percent of their passes and posting a 100 passer rating versus the ‘Birds’. So far, in 2020, ‘Big Ben’ has thrown seven touchdowns versus only one interception, and he has a quarterback rating of 105.2.

The secondary and linebackers have to hold up in coverage versus Ben Roethlisberger and all of those offensive weapons, or Philly is going to have a long day.

2. Are you ready for two Steelers defensive stats that Philadelphia Eagles fans won’t like?

It’s going to be hard for the Eagles to get that running game going in Week 5. In Week 4, the Eagles earned 46 yards on 13 carries. That’s it. That won’t cut it in Week 5 as this is a strength-versus-strength matchup. On defense, Philly only gives up 3.8 yards per rush and 108.8 yards per contest, but the Steelers are averaging 4.7 yards per rush.

3 Bold predictions for the Eagles and Steelers. light. Trending

Philly will need more out of their running game, but it won’t be easy. Like the ‘Birds’, the Steelers hang their hat on stingy run defense. One, they’re only giving up 2.7 yards per rush and 54 yards per contest. Pittsburgh also has 15 sacks and 54 pressures on its 2020 team resume. As a result, unlike Philly, Pittsburgh is making life hard for opposing quarterbacks. Collectively, the other teams’ signal-callers are completing just 59.8 percent of their passes. Winning and losing in this one might hinge on the arm of Carson Wentz. Let’s hope, if that happens, that positive things happen.