Braden Smith / Bernard Raimann vs. T.J. Watt
While T.J. Watt did not post a dominant statline, his presence was certainly felt yesterday, as he pressured Ryan on nearly every single passing attempt. The Steelers’ pass-rush put Ryan under duress consistently, and the veteran quarterback just could never find any sort of rythm. The offensive line struggles are perhaps the biggest surprise this season, and one that will most likely cause another head to roll once the season is over. Left tackle Bernard Raimann was once again the weakest link in the offensive line, as it is evident he still needs plenty of work before becoming a solid starter.
Gus Bradley vs. Kenny Pickett
It was a somewhat mediocre game for the Colts defense, but not bad by any means. Kenny Pickett did not look bad at all but it was evident that the Steelers were running a much simplified offense. The rookie finished the game under 200 yards with no passing touchdowns, and added a little over 30 yards on the ground. His best aspect yesterday was not turning the ball over, something the young quarterback has excelled at during his last three games.
Colts’ run defense vs. Najee Harris
Najee Harris was held to just 35 yards on a 3.5 clip, but it was backup Benny Snell who did the most damage as he rushed 12 times for 62 yards and the game-winning touchdown. It was not a great game for the Colts’ run defense, as the Steelers rushed for over 150 yards as a team and were effective throughout the game.
Jonathan Taylor vs. Myles Jack / Devin Bush
Taylor scored a touchdown for the second consecutive game, and was somewhat productive against the Steelers, but still far from his best version. It is clear that both the regression from the offensive line and the lack of a threatening passing game hurt him, and it further established the point that in today’s NFL you cannot build your offense around the running back.
Alec Pierce vs. Ahkello Witherspoon
Alec Pierce was blanked against the Steelers, as he is going through and understandable slump given the fact that he is just a rookie and the offense has not been even average this season. Pierce now has just four catches for 51 yards over the past four weeks, which is a bit worrying. Watching his performance towards the end of the season will be among the only interesting storylines the Colts will have.