After the 18-16 win over rival Cincinnati Bengals in the wildcard round, the Pittsburgh Steelers are moving on to the divisional round against the Denver Broncos.
The team will be without star Antonio Brown, as he has been ruled out with a concussion. Brown suffered the injury in the final minutes of the wildcard game vs the Bengals.
In 16 games played, Brown had 136 receptions, 1,834 yard with 10 touchdowns. Browns total touchdown receptions went from 13 last season to 10 this season. It does not helps when starting quarterback Ben Roethlisberger missed some games this season due to injury.
Browns showcased that he was one of the best wide receivers in the league this season, with the numbers that he produced.
Brown is a receiver you can build your franchise around. He has great hands, as well as good speed to burn the secondary. Brown broke out last season, but a lot of people were wondering if he could put up back to back consistently good numbers as the number one receiver for the Steelers.
Brown proved he can produce good numbers season after season, getting more receiving yards and receptions this season than last season. Brown is a number one receiver and the ultimate deep threat.
With Brown out, this is a big blow to the offense, since he is the teams number one option at receiver. The team already lost starting running back Le’Veon Bell due to injury and backup DeAngelo Williams has been dealing with injuries himself. Expect Wide Receiver Martavis Bryant to get more chances to make plays as the number one receiver with Brown absent. The team will have to hope Bryant is ready for the challenge, coming up vs a good Broncos secondary.
With this injury to Brown, this gives Broncos an advantage coming into the matchup. As if the team was not strong enough on defense already. Now the team does not have to worry about the number one receiver, and potentially the backup and starting running back. The Broncos should not take this as an easy game, even with the injuries to the Steelers. The Steelers are one of the hottest teams in football for a reason, the team knows how to win.