Who is the Steelers X-Factor vs. the Jaguars in Week 8?
The Pittsburgh Steelers are preparing to play the Jacksonville Jaguars at home in Week 8, and there are certain aspects of the game which can be difficult to predict. Of course, the outcome of the game is paramount, but there are players or position groups who could be viewed as X-Factors.
What is an X-Factor? That definition is an important part of this exercise. If I were to give you a player who was the ultimate X-Factor in Steelers history, it would be Troy Polamalu. Polamalu was able to take over a game almost single-handedly. Whether it being a tackle made where he looked like a heat-seeking missile, or a clutch interception. A game could tilt the Steelers’ way because of Troy.
With the definition out of the way, let’s see who are the X-Factors for the Steelers in Week 8:
X-Factor: Offensive Line
Why: I keep beating the drum when addressing the offense, but it all starts up front. In the game last week vs. the Rams, when did the offense start clicking? That’s right, when the offensive line started to put it all together in both pass protection and run blocking. If they can do it again, the offense, including Kenny Pickett, will have success. If they struggle, expect another almost unwatchable offensive performance, one we’ve all seen too many times this season. The offense, and by proxy the team, will go as the offensive line goes.
Why: Even if there weren’t injury concerns at cornerback, there would still be overall concerns. Joey Porter Jr. seems to be coming into his own and getting more snaps (hoping that he is healthy), but consistency otherwise just hasn’t been there. Taking on Trevor Lawrence and his quality eligibles, the play of the corners is going to be important. Hopefully the Steelers will have all hands on deck and nobody misses the game due to injury. Regardless, it will be up to whoever is on the field to get the job done and could very well determine the outcome of the game.
Who is your X-Factor for the game? Let us know in the comment section below, and be sure to stay tuned to SCN for the latest news and notes surrounding the Steelers as they prepare for the Jacksonville Jaguars in Week 8.