A banged up defense and offense isn’t a worthy excuse for Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker Ryan Shazier.
In the aftermath of Pittsburgh’s 27-16 defeat at the hands of the New England Patriots, Shazier was vocal about the team’s inept performance.
“We’re looking like garbage right now. This is terrible right now,” the third-year linebacker said, according to Will Graves of The Associated Press.
Pittsburgh is limping into their bye week. Antonio Brown suffered a thigh injury late in the third quarter on Sunday night. Brown returned to the contest but was clearly slowed by the leg injury. The wide receiver’s injury was a crippling blow to an offense without Ben Roethlisberger.
Le’Veon Bell looked agile in between the tackles. However, Steelers looked like a one-trick pony once Brown became hobbled.
On defense, Pittsburgh’s ability to stop the run is a major concern. Cameron Heyward’s absence was felt along the defensive line. LeGarrette Blount looked like the second coming of Jerome Bettis. Blount consistently ran through the first level of defenders on his way to 127 yards on 24 carries. The running back’s performance comes on the heels of Dolphins running back Jay Ajayi’s 200-yard outing versus the Steelers in Week 6.
Shazier’s stern words come at a necessary time for Pittsburgh with the team going on their bye week. The Steelers have a much-needed break to get healthier and go back to the drawing board. It should also soothe matters a little that no other team is above .500 in the AFC North.