The Steelers embark on what could be one of the toughest stretches of their schedule this week when they travel to Miami to take on the Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium on Sunday. It will be first of three straight road games for the black and gold, something that is never easy in the NFL.
"Three straight on the road, it's going to be tough," said linebacker James Farrior. "There is a tough challenge ahead of us. We just have to stay focused, take it one game at a time. Miami is next week. That's all we have to focus on."
The Dolphins are coming off a 23-20 overtime win on the road against the Green Bay Packers, improving their record to 3-2 and the energy from that is expected to carry over into Sunday's game in Miami.
"You look at the games ahead, it starts in Miami," said tackle Max Starks. "We will be going in there to a hyped-up Miami team that is successful right now. They are playing pretty good. They pulled a big win out against the Packers. It's going to be a tough, hostile crowd down in Miami.
"The biggest thing is to go in there, have a great attitude, and study extra hard because you know it's going to be noisy and loud and you have to contain that crowd noise to be successful. It's easy to do it at home, the crowd is quiet and you can run everything you want to in your offense. This is where it really counts."
The Steelers are 2-0 on the road so far this season, winning in Tennessee and Tampa. Pulling out road wins is a must if they are going to go far this year.
"When you put it in to perspective, in order to be successful and to make it to our ultimate goal, the playoffs, you realize there is going to be a gritty part of the schedule," said Starks. "Right now we are getting into that gritty part."
A stretch like this often times reveals what a team is made of, and it's a challenge that the team is ready for.
"This is the part of the schedule where you really find the identity of your team," said Starks. "You can see how this team is going to be this year based off the next couple of weeks. I think we are ready for it. We have had to do it before. Every team is going to have that patch. We just have to be better than the rest of them.
"When you look at it, you know what your base is. We have set a great foundation, but now you find how deep your team goes, to be able to go on the road and pull out victories. I think that is the biggest thing. It's not just about home dominance, but how you do on the road going in to other people's stadiums. You realize at some point you are going to have to do that to get to your ultimate goal – the biggest game of them all is an away game."