The Pittsburgh Steelers are on the road against the Indianapolis Colts for a Week 15 Saturday afternoon matchup that’ll see two dueling teams in the hunt for a wild card spot. Both the Steelers and Colts have 7-6 records after losing to the New England Patriots and Cincinnati Bengals in Week 14. As it stands right now, however, they would make the postseason ahead of the other four teams with 7-6 records.
The Steelers’ offense will need to bounce back after a miserable showing with Mitch Trubisky at quarterback against the Patriots. The team has struggled to move the ball against just about everybody this season. The Colts haven’t had similar struggles on offense, but we’ll have to see how they contend with the Pittsburgh defense.
The Steelers will likely need meaningful offense to win
It’s a little reductive, but if the Steelers want to win this game and keep themselves squarely in the playoff hunt, well, they’ll likely have to score points. Through 13 games, the Steelers are averaging just 16.2 points and 292.5 offensive yards per game. Those numbers are both easily in the bottom 10 in the NFL.
Per PFF, they’re 12th in EPA per play allowed, but they’re allowing 24.7 points per game. Despite the efficiency, they’re a defense you can, for the most part, get after, especially on the ground. The Colts are allowing over 130 rushing yards per game this season, the seventh-most in the NFL. That’s the one area where the Steelers have been surprisingly consistent this season as Najee Harris and Jaylen Warren have formed a one-two punch.
The Colts’ path to victory likely includes neutralizing T.J. Watt
The key to slowing down the Steelers’ defense likely starts with T.J. Watt, who is having another excellent season. Through 13 games, Watt has 14 sacks and 67 total pressures on the season and is back in the race for Defensive Player of the Year. He’s a one-of-one defender, and as strong as the Colts’ offensive line has been this season, they’ll likely need to slow down Watt to give themselves the best chance of scoring points.
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Steelers vs. Colts head to head
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Steelers vs. Colts Week 15 injury report: Who’s out, who’s starting
Steelers’ edge rusher Alex Highsmith suffered a neck injury early in the second quarter against the Patriots in Week 14. He left that game, and though the Steelers haven’t officially ruled him out, Highsmith could miss the game against the Colts. So far this season, he has 51 pressures (top 20 in the NFL) and six sacks. With Highsmith potentially out, the Steelers would need to look to veteran Markus Golden or rookie Nate Herbig to step up.
The Colts will know Jonathan Taylor’s status later in the week, but he could be back in time for Saturday after undergoing thumb surgery a couple of weeks ago. He was estimated to miss two to three weeks while recovering, and that timetable aligns with him returning in Week 15.
Pittsburgh Steelers Week 15 injury update: Alex Highsmith questionable
Indianapolis Colts Week 15 injury update: Jonathan Taylor likely to play
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|Ogletree is involved in domestic violence allegations and has been placed on the commissioner exempt list.