The best tacklers from 2022 the Steelers are set to face in 2023
After taking a look over several days at some of the best offensive players at their positions in 2022 who the Steelers are scheduled to face in 2023, we then switched sides of the ball to look at a couple areas of the defense. Before moving on, here are all the groups who have been covered so far:
Today it’s time to check out players who have the most tackles in 2022 who the Steelers are set to face this year.. For this one,it should be noted that tackles are NOT an official stat kept by the NFL. For this exercise, I will be using combined tackles reported by Pro Football Reference. As I said before, there could be injuries, trades, benchings, or holdouts which could make these players not able to see the field when they face the Black and Gold. But for now, these things can’t be known for sure. This list consists of players who had at least 125 tackles in 2022, their overall rank last season, and the week in which they will face the Steelers..
For this exercise, players from the same teams will be combined.
Foyesade Oluokun (1st)
In his first season in Jacksonville, Foyesade Oluokun picked up where he left off in Atlanta as the NFLleader in tackles in 2021. Going over 100 tackles the last three seasons, Oluokun has only faced the Steelers once in his career with Atlanta in 2018 where he had five tackles.
Roquan Smith (3rd)
Week 5, Week 18
Playing eight games in Chicago before being traded to the Ravens midway through the 2022 season, Roquan Smith already faced the Steelers twice since joining Baltimore last year. Having 14 tackles between the two games, as well as 12 tackles in the single game against the Steelers as a member of the Bears in 2021, Smith has already shown the Steelers his tackling ability.
Zaire Franklin (4th)
In his first season as a full-time starter, Zaire Franklin put up more tackles in his previous four seasons combined. Officially with the Colts in three games against the Steelers, only the most recent matchup last season did Franklin have any stats where he had 11 tackles on Monday Night Football.
Jordyn Brooks (6th) & Bobby Wagner (13th)
A first-round draft pick by the Seahawks in 2020, Jordyn Brooks played two seasons alongside Bobby Wagner before Wagner spent last year with the Los Angeles Rams. Brooks actually had fewer tackles in 2022 that he did in 2021 with 184 where he had 14 tackles against the Steelers. Coming back to Seattle this season, Bobby Wagner is hoping to keep up his streak as he has had over 100 tackles in every season of his 11-year career. Wagner has faced the Steelers three times in his career where he had 12 tackles in 2015, seven tackles in 2019, and 14 tackles in 2021.
Jalen Pitre (11th)
Already showing up on a previous list against the Steelers for interveptions, Jalen Pitre is one of two players from the secondary who had over 125 tackles last season, both of which played for the Houston Texans.
Fred Warner (17th) & Dre Greenlaw (20th)
San Francisco 49ers
The duo with Fred Warner and Dre Greenlaw have been playing together in San Francisco since Greenlaw was drafted in the fifth round of the 2019 NFL draft. While last year saw Greelaw burst under the scene with over 100 tackles for the first time in his career, Warner has done so each of his five NFL seasons. In the 2019 match up with the Steelers, Warner had three tackles in the game where Greenlaw had one.
Ja’Whaun Bentley (t-21st)
New England Patriots
Bentley saw a career high in tackles for the Patriots in 2022 after going over the 100 mark the previous season with 109. Facing the Steelers twice in his career, Bentley had five tackles in last year‘s matchup while having three in 2019.
Jonathan Owens (t-21st)
Green Bay Packers
The other secondary player on the list with 125 tackles last season, Jonathan Owens signed with the Green Bay Packers after playing the last four years for the Houston Texans. Exactly how much Owens will need to be used as a tackle from the safety position in Green Bay remains to be seen.