Posted in Game Reviews

Game Preview: Steelers vs Bucs

by Staff Report on September 25, 2010

The Pittsburgh leads the all-time series 7-1, including wins in the last three meetings. Pittsburgh defeated the Buccaneers 20-3 at Heinz Field in 2006 and also prevailed 17-7 in 2002 on Monday Night Football in Tampa. In 2001, the Steelers won 17-10 in Tampa. Tampa Bay’s 16-3 defeat of the Steelers in 1998 was the Buccaneers first victory in the first five meetings. The Bucs took a loss at the Steelers’ hands in Tampa Bay’s 1976 inaugural season, but then followed with three close losses from 1980 through 1989. Though the Bucs were outscored 42-0 in that first contest, the points margin in the next four games combined was just 75-71 in Pittsburgh’s favor. Five of the seven prior meetings have taken place in Tampa.

GAME INFORMATION
Date: Sunday, September 26, 2010
Kickoff: 1:00 p.m. ET
Site: Raymond James Stadium (65,890)
2010 Records: Tampa Bay 2-0, Pittsburgh 2-0
Network Television: CBS
Play-by-Play: Gus Johnson, Analyst: Steve Tasker
Bucs Radio: US 103.5, flagship station (103.5 FM, 620 AM)
Play-by-Play: Gene Deckerhoff, Color: Dave Moore, Sideline: T.J. Rives
Last Game: Tampa Bay won at Carolina 20-7; Pittsburgh won at Tennessee 19-11

Head-To-Head
Pittsburgh leads series 7-1 (Regular Season)

SERIES BY THE NUMBERS
Overall Regular Season Series:……………….. Pittsburgh leads series, 7-1
Home Record vs. Pittsburgh Steelers:……………………………………..1-4
Road Record vs. Pittsburgh Steelers:………………………………………0-3
Current Streak:……………………………….Steelers, three games (2008-09)
Buccaneers Longest Streak:………………………………..One game (1998)
Steelers Longest Streak:………………………………. Four games (1976-89)
Regular Season Point Total:………………….Buccaneers 91 – Steelers 171
Most Points, Buccaneers:…………………………. 22, Steelers 31-22 (1989)
Most Points, Steelers:………………………………..42, Steelers 42-0 (1976)
Most Points, both teams:…………………………. 53, Steelers 31-22 (1989)
Fewest Points, Buccaneers:………………………… 0, Steelers 42-0 (1976)
Fewest Points, Steelers:…………………………. 3, Buccaneers 16-3 (1998)
Fewest Points, both teams:…………………… 19, Buccaneers 16-3 (1998)

What to Watch
Donald Penn & Jeremy Trueblood vs Jerome Harrison & LaMarr Woodley

The Steelers pass rush starts and ends with the duo of Harrison and Woodley. Through two games the two have combined for 5 sacks, 3 forced fumbles and 28 tackles. The two players charged with at a minimum, of slowing them down are Penn and Trueblood. Penn in the past has done an decent job against some of the leagues better pass rushers.. The same can’t be said for Trueblood who has had problems shutting down quick edge rushers in the past. The fate of the Bucs could rest squarely on the shoulders of its offensive tackles.

Greg Olson vs Dick LeBeau
Olson will be tested early and often by LeBeau 3-4 attacking blitz scheme, Olson who’s had his share of ups and downs as a play caller. Will need to be patient and take what LeBeau gives until he’s sure of what the Steelers game plan is. After last week against the Panthers it’s a safe bet that Olson will continue to call running plays even when they are not working to allow the pressure to be taken off both Josh Freeman and the defense.

Bucs Front Seven vs Steelers Rushing Attack
The Bucs who haven’t allowed a 100-yard rusher through two games to start the 2010 season will be tested once again. The Steelers who have the leagues 31st ranked passing attack and have given up 7 sacks in two games are sure to lean heavily on Rashard Mendenhall and the Steelers other backs to help control the tempo of the game and allow the defense to decide the out come.

INJURY REPORT
PITTSBURGH STEELERS
Out
G Trai Essex (ankle)
QB Dennis Dixon (knee)
Probable
DT Casey Hampton (hamstring)
G Chris Kemoeatu (knee)
T Max Starks (ankle)
WR Hines Ward (calf)

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS
Questionable
LB Niko Koutouvides (ankle)
CB Myron Lewis (knee)
C Jeff Faine (calf)
RB Kareem Huggins (groin)
WR Maurice Stovall (back)
Probable
QB Josh Freeman (right thumb)
RB Carnell Williams (hamstring)
TE Kellen Winslow (knee)

ENEMY COACHES
Steelers Head Coach: Mike Tomlin
Steelers Offensive Coordinator: Bruce Arians
Steelers Defensive Coordinator: Dick LeBeau
Steelers Special Teams Coach: Al Everest

STATISTICAL RANKINGS:
PITTSBURGH STEELERS OFFENSE
Overall: 31st (240.5 ypg)
Rushing: 10th (124.5 ypg)
Passing: 31st (116.0 ypg)
Sacks Allowed: 28th (7)
Points Scored: 21st (17.0 ppg)
PITTSBURGH STEELERS DEFENSE
Overall: 20th (266.5 ypg)
Rushing: 4th (52.0 ypg)
Passing: 17tht (214.5 ypg)
Sacks: 4th (6)
Points Allowed: 1st (10 ppg)

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS OFFENSE
Overall: 24th (280.5 ypg)
Rushing: 15th (107.0 ypg)
Passing: 25th (173.5 ypg)
Sacks Allowed: 8th (3)
Points Scored: 17th (18.5 ppg)
TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS DEFENSE
Overall: 15th (309.0 ypg)
Rushing: 15th (111.5 ypg)
Passing: 11th (197.5 ypg)
Sacks: 13th (4)
Points Allowed: 3rd (10.5 ppg)

Buc Central’s Prognostication:
As always we are not advocating gambling based on our views of the game, especially considering we typically are inclined to make such educated guesses using are heart rather the any rational thought applied to picking. We are merely giving an opinion of who we think has the best chance at securing a victory.

STEELERS 13
BUCS 17

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