Jets vs. Steelers: 3 things to watch

Roethlisberger is at his best when he is outside of the pocket.
DOUG PENSINGER/GETTY IMAGES

A surprising rout of the Bills in Week 1 sets the Jets up for a much stiffer test in Pittsburgh on Sunday. The Steelers won’t be a happy team, coming off a nationally televised loss at Denver and will be looking to make a statement against the Jets.

Three things to watch for

1. Bounceback Ben

It was a rather ordinary Ben Roethlisberger under center for Pittsburgh in their 31-19 season opening loss to the Broncos. Harried and hit aplenty, Roethlisberger was 22-of-40 for 245 yards, two touchdowns and one interception. Look for the Steelers to spread the ball around to all their receivers and utilize their no-huddle offense to keep the Jets on their toes.

“It allows us to change the pace of the game at our whim, if you will. Ben has done a nice job over the years of administrating it,” Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said. “It’s an awesome change of pace for us and it produced some points and helped us put some drives together in the last game. It’s just a component of what we do.”

2. Can’t Find Revis Island

In the fourth quarter of the Jets’ win over the Bills, Darrelle Revis suffered a concussion and finished the game on the sidelines. Revis was ruled out of this weekend’s game on Friday, so Kyle Wilson will step in as the starting cornerback opposite Antonio Cromartie.

“I think Kyle’s really improved in my opinion,” head coach Rex Ryan said. “He’ll have a big challenge this week as well.”

It will be a big challenge for Wilson, who has never really lived up to his billing as a first-round pick.

“I’m a lot smarter. I use my experience to my advantage. Over time, I just continue to work on things,” Wilson said. “I just want to get better at my technique, playing multiple positions in this defense. I just want to elevate my game.”

3. Going Holmes

This isn’t the first time wide receiver Santonio Holmes has returned to Pittsburgh, but that doesn’t mean that he wouldn’t like to send a message to the franchise where he spent his first four years in the league. In his two trips to Heinz Field in 2010 — once in the regular season and then again in the playoffs — Holmes had a combined eight catches for 101 yards and a touchdown.

“I’ve been here for three years now and my determination, drive, and focus, is on the New York Jets football team,” Holmes said. “I’m not really focused on what goes on in Pittsburgh anymore.”

Don’t be surprised if Ryan makes Holmes a captain for this game, a move he often pulls for a player going up against their old team. 

Follow Jets beat writer Kristian Dyer on Twitter @KristianRDyer.


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