Coming into Week 10, this Saints team is at an all-time low, coming off of their worst loss of the season against a very good Ravens team. They were beaten in all three phases of the game and had no answers for any of them.
Pittsburgh offensively is one of the worst in the league statistically, as they are listed in the bottom six teams in every major category. Things aren’t getting any better for them either as they just traded their top receiving threat at the trade deadline by the name of Chase Claypool. Their star rookie running back from a season ago Najee Harris has been an extreme disappointment for the team this year and is reportedly expected to receive less snaps. With that being said, the Steelers will come into this one with rookie quarterback Kenny Pickett at the helm who’s been underwhelming so far throwing for only two passing touchdowns to eight interceptions in five starts. His top weapons Dionate Johnson, George Pickens and Pat Freiermuth. Johnson who is very athletic and a smooth route runner has had a very down year after two very good seasons the past two years. The change of scenery at the quarterback position has a ton to do with that. Pickens on the other side looks like a promising rookie. A tough, physical receiver with unreal ball skills. Two guys who can give defensive backs some problems if given the opportunity. Freiermuth at the tight end position has been their most consistent target this season catching 32 of 48 of his targets for 367 yards. Another guy to be aware of this week.
Defensively for the Saints, specifically in the secondary, it looks as if they will be without Marshon Lattimore once again as he’s still dealing with a kidney injury. Which means Alontae Taylor and Paulson Adebo will get the starts at outside corners. Two guys that have put together a solid couple of weeks now. The same can’t be said for the safety positions as there were numerous coverage busts on Monday night. Tyrann Mathieu and Marcus Maye were huge victims in a few huge 3rd downs that extended drives that ultimately led to scores. Mathieu spoke about alignment issues in his press conference after the game which is something that should not be occurring this far into the season. If not fixed, teams have shown to have their so called back-on-track games against the Saints. Don’t be surprised if the Steelers ended up having their own especially coming off of a bye.
In the ideal scenario, which is almost nonexistent for this year's Saints team, the secondary should take full advantage of a struggling Steelers offense with a struggling rookie quarterback. This team gives up the ball through the air more than any team in the league and scores the least amount of touchdowns through the air as well. It should be expected to see a few turnovers this week from the Saints defense if they come ready to play, unfortunately this year is not one of expectations. We’ll just have to wait and see Sunday.