The Raiders have a tall task ahead facing the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday at Oakland Coliseum. The AFC North contenders are reeling after two straight last minute losses, and will be looking to get right against the Silver and Black.
Making hay against the NFL’s worst run defense has been a common tact for Raiders opponents, but Pittsburgh will have a harder time doing that without James Conner.
Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin ruled Conner out of Sunday’s game at Oakland Coliseum with an ankle sprain. The injury was more significant than the team initially thought.
That’s a blow to a Steelers rushing attack that ranks No. 29 overall. Conner did the bulk of the damage, with 909 yards and 12 touchdowns in 201 attempts.
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Rookie Jaylen Samuels could be up as the primary runner, considering he took over once Conner went down Sunday versus the Chargers. Stevan Ridley is also an option in the backfield.
The Steelers will still have an explosive offense with Ben Roethlisberger behind center and Antonio Brown and Juju Smith-Schuster running routes. The Raiders must score at a steady clip to stay competitive with Pittsburgh, no matter who featured running the football.