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Roethlisberger, Steelers move from run-heavy offense


Lost in the mire of Pittsburgh's loss to the Oakland Raiders on Sunday was a Steelers offense that continues to dispel the rumor that it's married to the ground game.

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Perhaps this Ben Roethlisberger-Todd Haley pairing isn't the doom-and-gloom narrative it's been painted out to be. When Haley was hired as offensive coordinator, the messaging out of team headquarters suggested a run-heavy attack and a roped-in Roethlisberger. Total propaganda campaign.

All we saw Sunday was Big Ben rifling pass after pass downfield, throwing for 200-plus yards in the first half alone before finishing with 384 yards and four touchdowns. Meanwhile, Isaac Redman led all Pittsburgh rushers with just nine carries for 27 yards.

Rashard Mendenhall's absence is a factor, but nobody threw the ball more than Haley when he was with the Arizona Cardinals, so we shouldn't be surprised. Roethlisberger has nothing to complain about. Like so many veteran quarterbacks, he wants to call his own plays, because he's at his best when Pittsburgh shifts into the no-huddle and allows the passing game to find its rhythm.

If Haley arrived without a full understanding of what Roethlisberger means to this offense, it must be crystal clear after three weeks of football. If anything, the concern is Pittsburgh's inability to rush the ball combined with a defense that hasn't stopped opponents from scoring. The Steelers' frenzied air show is the only thing keeping this team in games.

Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.


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