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What went right, wrong at Jacksonville

WHAT WENT RIGHT

  • This is what it can look like all season. This is what it has been looking like all summer at Saint Vincent College. Even though the Steelers lost the coin toss, they got the ball first when the Jaguars deferred to the second half. Starting at the 20-yard line, it took Ben Roethlisberger six plays to get the Steelers into the end zone for their first touchdown of the preseason. It went like this: Pass to Antonio Brown for 6 yards; Pass to Le'Veon Bell for 6 yards and a first down; a 16-yard run by Bell; a 2-yard run by Bell; a 3-yard run by DeAngelo Williams; and then on third-and-5 a 44-yard touchdown pass to Martavis Bryant. It became an 8-0 Steelers lead when Roethlisberger fired a bullet to Markus Wheaton for the 2-point conversion.
  • DeAngelo Williams looked sharp early in the game, especially in the area of sticking his foot in the ground and getting up the field. Williams had 28 yards on his first six carries (4.7 average).
  • The pass ended up being incomplete, but it would've been a sack if Dri Archer hadn't stepped up and cut blitzing linebacker Jeremiah George to the ground. George is listed at 234 pounds, while Archer tips the scales at 173.
  • The Steelers were not penalized in the first half, nor did they turn the ball over. Both of those things were problems in the preseason opener vs. the Vikings.
  • The ability to tackle and play special teams were seen to be critical to rookie safety Gerod Holliman's chances of making the 53-man roster. On the second half kickoff, Holliman weaved his way through the blocking and dumped Corey Grant at the 21-yard line.
  • On a Matt Conrath sack of Chad Henne that set up a fourth-and-7 and forced a Jaguars punt midway through the third quarter, it was pressure from the outside by LOLB Anthony Chickillo that forced the quarterback to step up into the path of Conrath.
  • During the three previous seasons (2012-14) Shaun Suisham converted 29-for-29 field goal attempts from between 40-49 yards. The first attempt for Garrett Hartley in a Steelers uniform came from 48 yards out late in the third quarter. He made the kick and cut the Steelers' deficit to 17-11.
  • Punting from his own end zone early in the fourth quarter, Jordan Berry got off a 54-yard punt with plenty of hang time that had the Jaguars starting the ensuing offensive series at their own 39-yard line.
  • After drops by Shakim Phillips and Sammie Coates to set up a third-and-10, Jesse James made a nice catch in traffic for 22 yards to give the Steelers a first down at their own 39-yard line with just over 10 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter.
  • Later in the same possession, Landry Jones led C.J. Goodwin perfectly for a 21-yard gain and a first down at the Jaguars 11-yard line. Three plays Later, Garrett Hartley kicked a 29-yard field goal to cut the Steelers deficit to 17-14 with 7:54 remaining in the game.
  • On the ensuing kickoff, Shayon Green stripped the ball from returner Storm Johnson and Sammie Coates recovered at the Jaguars 17-yard line.
  • The Steelers capitalized on the takeaway when Landry Jones converted a second-and-8 with a 9-yard pass to Sammie Coates, and then a second-and-goal from the 4-yard line with a touchdown pass to C.J. Goodwin.

WHAT WENT WRONG

The Pittsburgh Steelers traveled to Jacksonville, FL to take on the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 1 of the 2015 preseason.

  • The Steelers offense had to burn a timeout early in the second quarter, but this one can't be blamed on Landry Jones being the quarterback, There seemed to be some confusion on the Steelers sideline in terms of communicating the formation and getting the right personal grouping onto the field.
  • At the end of that possession, Landry Jones took two shots down the field, but both were incomplete. On the first of those, Martavis Bryant caught the ball but didn't get his second foot down in bounds. On the second, Jaguars cornerback Davon House got a hand on the ball at the last moment to tip it away from Darius Heyward-Bey.
  • On the 31-yard touchdown pass from Chad Henne to TE Clay Harbor that gave the Jaguars a 17-8 lead with 79 seconds left in the field half, CB B.W. Webb passed Harbor off to the next level of the zone, but safety Shamarko Thomas had drifted too far to the inside and was unable to get to the sideline in time to make a play on the ball or the receiver.
  • Through the first three halves of the preseason, the Steelers special teams were getting gashed on returns. In the first half against Jacksonville, Denard Robinson had a 34-yard kickoff return, and Rashad Greene had a 37-yard punt return. Against the Vikings, Stephon Diggs had a 62-yard punt return, and Marcus Sherels had a 32-yard kickoff return and a 24-yard punt return.
  • The Steelers defense wasn't doing a consistent job in getting off the field through the first two-plus quarters vs. the Jaguars. In the first half, the Jaguars converted 4-of-7 (57.1 percent). Through three quarters, the Jaguars were 5-of-10 on third down and 1-for-1 on fourth down.
  • An illegal block in the back penalty by Howard Jones forced the Steelers offense to start it opening possession of the fourth quarter at the Pittsburgh 14-yard line. Two incomplete passes and a screen pass that lost 4 yards had Jordan Berry punting from his own end zone.
  • With the Steelers defense trying to protect a 21-17 lead, and with the Jaguars pinned deep in their own territory, Jordan Zumwalt was flagged for roughing the passer to give the Jaguars a cheap 15 yards on a drive that ended with a touchdown and a 24-21 Jaguars lead.
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