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#pounditSunday, April 11, 2021

Ben Roethlisberger hits back at critics of Steelers’ run game

Ben Roethlisberger

The defense the Pittsburgh Steelers have played this season may remind fans of the “Steel Curtain” days, but they have not exactly pounded the ball on the ground like those teams did. With an undefeated record through 10 games, Ben Roethlisberger is not concerned about that.

Roethlisberger was asked on Tuesday about Pittsburgh’s lack of consistent production in the run game. The quarterback seemed to indicate he has grown tired of that talking point.

“We quote-unquote need to run the football X amount of times? No we don’t,” Roethlisberger said, via NFL Network’s Aditi Kinkhabwala. “We need to win the football game.”

It’s hard to argue with that. The Steelers rank 21st in the NFL with 102.2 rushing yards per game. They’re 18th with 245.6 passing yards per game. Neither of those marks are impressive, which speaks to how dominant their defense has been.

Pittsburgh’s defense ranks first in the NFL in points allowed per game (17.4), sacks (38) takeaways (21) and turnover differential (+12). Skeptics could argue that they will need to run the ball more effectively in the playoffs, but whatever they have done is working so far. Roethlisberger and the rest of the team shouldn’t care about stats as long as the wins keep piling up.

Of course, with an undefeated record comes infinite storylines. We saw one player attempt to downplay that this week, but it’s simply something the Steelers are going to have to continue to manage.

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