New York Jets At Pittsburgh Steelers - Mission Impossible?

Despite an ugly two-game losing streak, the New York Jets still control their own destiny when it comes making the 2010 NFL playoffs. It will take a win in two of their three final games, starting this week in Pittsburgh where the Jets face the 10-3 Steelers.

Pittsburgh is probably the second-best team in the conference and as usual is led by a strong, physical defense. They are first in the NFL at defending the run, although are only ranked 23rd at defending the pass. Over the past four games, Pittsburgh has allowed an average of 9 points. The scariest stat when thinking about the Jets offense facing them is they have already racked up 39 sacks, 17 interceptions, and 24 forced fumbles.

On the other side of the ball, Ben Roethlisberger has been productive since returning in week 5, with 13 touchdowns to 5 interceptions. He is always a threat to run the ball and is one of the most difficult quarterbacks in the league to sack. Rashard Mendenhall is having a strong year running the football with 1,073 yards and 9 touchdowns. Mike Wallace is Pittsburgh's big play receiver and has 946 yards on only 46 receptions, along with 8 touchdowns. Hines Ward leads the team with 49 receptions and has 638 receiving yards. Tight end Heath Miller is expected to return after missing last week and is a threat in the middle of the field.

My initial thoughts on this match-up is despite Pittsburgh's ability to stop the run, the Jets still must lean on their ground attack, in particular Shonn Greene, to lead the way. It would be insane to drop Mark Sanchez back 44 times against this defense on the road. I think the Jets match-up well in terms of defending the Steelers offense. Darrelle Revis should be assigned to Mike Wallace, with Antonio Cromartie covering Hines Ward. The key will be preventing Roethlisberger from extending plays and not letting Heath Miller, Emmanuel Sanders, or Antawan Randle El kill them in the middle of the field.

This is an uphill battle for the Jets and it will likely take points from special teams or defense to pull the upset.

Here is a look at Pittsburgh's 2010 stats so far -

Passing

Passing Rushing Sacks
G Rating Comp Att Pct Yds Y/G Y/A TD INT Rush Yds Y/G Avg TD Sack YdsL
Charlie Batch 3 76.2 29 49 59.2 352 117.3 7.2 3 3 7 30 10 4.3 0 4 21
Dennis Dixon 2 79.4 22 32 68.8 254 127 7.9 0 1 5 32 16 6.4 0 5 41
Ben Roethlisberger 9 94.8 180 291 61.9 2336 259.6 8 13 5 21 125 13.9 6 1 26 161

Rushing

Rushing Receiving
G Rush Yds Y/G Avg Lng TD Rec Yds Y/G Avg Lng TD
Charlie Batch 3 7 30 10 4.3 24 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Dennis Dixon 2 5 32 16 6.4 21 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Rashard Mendenhall 13 275 1073 82.5 3.9 50 9 20 125 9.6 6.3 17 0
Mewelde Moore 12 25 87 7.3 3.5 18 0 24 194 16.2 8.1 29 0
Antwaan Randle El 13 1 2 .200 2 2 0 19 224 17.2 11.8 34 0
Isaac Redman 13 44 185 14.2 4.2 17 0 7 63 4.8 9 16 2
Ben Roethlisberger 9 21 125 13.9 6 31 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Mike Wallace 13 4 31 2.4 7.8 19 0 46 946 72.8 20.6 53 8
Hines Ward 12 1 -2 -0.2 -2 -2 0 49 638 53.2 13 43 4

Receiving

Receiving
G Rec Yds Y/G AVG Lng TD
Antonio Brown 6 8 80 13.3 10 21 0
David Johnson 2 4 46 23 11.5 25 0
Rashard Mendenhall 13 20 125 9.6 6.3 17 0
Heath Miller 12 33 384 32 11.6 36 1
Mewelde Moore 12 24 194 16.2 8.1 29 0
Antwaan Randle El 13 19 224 17.2 11.8 34 0
Isaac Redman 13 7 63 4.8 9 16 2
Emmanuel Sanders 9 16 228 25.3 14.3 28 2
Matt Spaeth 4 6 53 13.3 8.8 12 0
Mike Wallace 13 46 946 72.8 20.6 53 8
Hines Ward 12 49 638 53.2 13 43 4

Returns

Kickoff Returns Punt Returns
G KR YDS AVG Lng TD PR Yds Avg Lng TD
Antonio Brown 6 9 259 28.8 89 1 12 99 8.3 21 0
Mewelde Moore 12 2 32 16 17 0 0 0 0 0 0
Antwaan Randle El 13 0 0 0 0 0 12 48 4 15 0
Isaac Redman 13 4 81 20.3 21 0 0 0 0 0 0
Emmanuel Sanders 9 25 628 25.1 48 0 4 60 15 38 0

Punting

Punting
G Punts Yds AVG Lng In20 TB
Jeremy Kapinos 2 5 176 35.2 53 3 0
Dan Sepulveda 12 56 2550 45.5 62 16 8
Shaun Suisham 4 3 115 38.3 39 1 0

Kicking

Field Goals PAT
G 0-19 20-29 30-39 40-49 50+ FGM FGA PCT XPM XPA PCT pts
Shaun Suisham 4 1 - 1 1 - 1 1 - 1 6 - 6 0 - 0 9 9 100.0% 9 9 100.0% 36

Defense

Sacks Interceptions Tackles
G Sacks YdsL Int Yds IntTD Solo Ast Total
Flozell Adams 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Will Allen 6 0 0 0 0 0 2 1 3
Crezdon Butler 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Ryan Clark 13 0 0 1 11 0 49 28 77
Nick Eason 8 1.5 11 0 0 0 7 8 15
James Farrior 13 4 25 0 0 0 65 28 93
Larry Foote 6 1 8 0 0 0 12 3 15
Keyaron Fox 8 0 0 0 0 0 5 1 6
William Gay 13 2 15 0 0 0 31 5 36
Casey Hampton 9 1 6 0 0 0 7 8 15
James Harrison 12 10 69 2 2 0 59 20 79
Chris Hoke 7 0 0 0 0 0 6 3 9
Ziggy Hood 10 1 6 0 0 0 9 4 13
Brett Keisel 7 1 0 1 79 0 12 10 22
Chris Kemoeatu 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Keenan Lewis 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Anthony Madison 11 0 0 0 0 0 2 4 6
Bryant McFadden 13 2 16 1 0 0 65 6 71
Steve McLendon 2 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 2
Ryan Mundy 12 0 0 0 0 0 4 0 4
Troy Polamalu 13 1 15 6 101 0 48 15 63
Maurkice Pouncey 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Aaron Smith 6 0 0 0 0 0 7 8 15
Stevenson Sylvester 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Ike Taylor 13 1 11 2 9 0 38 12 50
Lawrence Timmons 13 3 10 2 5 0 75 30 105
Greg Warren 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1
LaMarr Woodley 13 8.5 59 2 22 0 31 13 44
Jason Worilds 10 2 13 0 0 0 2 0 2

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