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Chart shows the futility of the Steelers and play-action passing

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When it comes to statistics there are outliers and then there is the Pittsburgh Steelers and play-action passing. Pro Football Focus analyst Ben Linsey shared the chart above and while it doesn’t come as a surprise to most Steelers fans just how little and how poorly the Steelers do in play-action, but in perspective to the rest of the league, it really is staggering.

This is one area we hope to be addressed by new offensive coordinator Matt Canada. But without a consistent rushing attack, play-action passing cannot happen.

There is also the idea of what your goals are with play-action. A perfect example of this is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. The reigning Super Bowl champs only utilized play-action around 20 percent of the time, which was among the worst in the league. But their 8.5 yards per dropback was near the best in the NFL.

Meanwhile, you have the Philadelphia Eagles who use play-action more than 25 percent of the time but barely more than barely throw for more yards per dropback.

Play-action could be the best weapon Pittsburgh has to keep Ben Roethlisberger upright and open up a passing game that only averaged 6.3 yards per attempt in 2020.

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