A New Look To The Pittsburgh Steelers Offensive Playbook

  • baltimore ravens
  • Ben Roethlisberger
  • Chase Claypool
  • Eric Ebron
  • JuJu Smith-Schuster
  • Mark Andrews
  • Pittsburgh Steelers
By Freddie Hall June 28, 2020 0 Comment

The Pittsburgh Steelers have the opportunity to try something new with their offense in the 2020 season. Using the tight ends more may equal to success.

Last season, the Baltimore Ravens used their three tight ends incredibly effectively. It wasn’t even their first round pick from 2018 that impressed the most. Instead, it was the third round pick from the same draft class, Mark Andrews, that shone brightest for the Ravens. The Pittsburgh Steelers now have an opportunity to implement the same system the Ravens used in 2019.

Pittsburgh now has two very effective tight ends in Eric Ebron and Vance McDonald. With the addition of wide receiver Chase Claypool, Steelers would be wise to try out the same system Ravens used so well in 2019. Claypool is listed as a wide receiver but being 6-4, 229 pounds, he has the body type and athleticism to be used in a tight end format. Last season the tight ends in Pittsburgh only accounted for 408 yards combined and three touchdowns. Ebron and Claypool are immediate upgrades and will bring more of a dominant force to the Steelers offense.

Borrowing from Baltimore

Baltimore’s trio of tight ends gained 1,522 yards and 14 touchdowns. They were a key piece in how successful the Ravens were last season. The stats prove that implementing this style of game plan will diversify the offense and make it harder for defenses to combat against multiple talents, rather than focusing on an individual. The Ravens have now traded away one part of the tight end trio, Hayden Hurst, who is now with the Atlanta Falcons. Baltimore will look to improve further in 2020, but without the use of the tight end packages it will be hard.

Ebron, McDonald and Claypool have all the talent to copy the system used in Baltimore. All three are better talents than the Ravens had, but the system actually elevated Mark Andrews into a top-five tight end in the league. Eric Ebron has been at the top of his game in recent years having a successful stint for the Indianapolis Colts after an unsuccessful run with the Detroit Lions. Chase Claypool was a menace at Notre Dame, achieving 1,037 yards and 13 touchdowns in the 2019 college season.

What does this new philosophy bring to Pittsburgh

Tight end centric offensive plans also benefit the talent around as well. With defenses focusing the tight ends, it draws away focus from the wide receivers. JuJu Smith-Schuster needs a stand out season and this style will provide him with more opportunity to be open downfield for Pittsburgh’s quarterback, Ben Roethlisberger, to target him. James Washington and Diontae Johnson will be looking to bring their game to the next level in 2020. Benefiting from defenses focusing on the tight ends, all three receivers will get their opportunity to be successful in the 2020 season.

The Pittsburgh Steelers offense last year was awful. Losing Roethlisberger was a massive blow but having him on the team doesn’t mean it’ll be successful. Teams that are taking risks and trying new things in the league have been winning. It is time for the Steelers to start taking risks and start creating a more interesting, multi-dimensional offense if they are going to compete to top the AFC North. Cincinnati will be on the rise soon enough, Browns are gaining strength and the Ravens are here to stay. Steelers need to try a new game plan if they want to dominate the division. The tight end offensive system will work to their favor and earn them wins if executed correctly this season.

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