Could the Pittsburgh Steelers Make the Playoffs With Dennis Dixon?
ďDo you think that if Ben Roethlisberger gets a suspension from the NFL Dennis Dixon will be able to step in and keep the team in playoff contention?Ē
Let me preface this by saying that I donít believe that Roethlisberger is going to receive a suspension from the NFL as no charges have yet been filed and even if they are itís highly doubtful that they are substantiated. The only thing the quarterback is guilty of, in my eyes, is putting himself in questionable situations.
But, onto the question.
I wonít lie, no one wants to see Dennis Dixon in the game. And thatís not to discredit Dixon, heís a phenomenal athlete. But he simply canít put up the numbers on a consistent basis like Roethlisberger. If he has to start more than two or three games, this team is more than likely packing it in and playing for next season.
As Steelers fans, weíve really only had one glimpse at Dixon, that of course was the game against the Baltimore Ravens where he not only threw a touchdown but also ran for one before throwing the game-ending interception in overtime.
Though, to be completely fair to Dixon, I chalk that up to the coaching staff not utilizing his abilities to the put him in the best position possible.
So, I suppose that, depending on the amount of games that Dixon is asked to win, he could possibly get us in, but I wouldnít bet on it.
If the team puts him behind center in, letís say, games one to four, then I donít see them getting off to the start the fans want. Because like it or not, Roethlisberger is going to get the majority of the snaps in training camp and offseason drills.
If, however, heís asked to come in for the last few games, Iíd hope that we were well in the playoff hunt and it wouldnít hurt the position to get him some snaps. When his abilities are used right he can be a game-changing player.
If it were up to me, weíd use him in a Joshua Cribbs type role with the offenseóput both him and Roethlisberger on the field and let them make plays. Or if itís just Dixon in the game, then play him the way heís used to.
That means playing him in a spread offense, like the one he played in at Oregon. Let him use his speed and agility to win the battle. Donít force him to throw it deep every chance that he has, let him get comfortable with the short patterns and, most importantly, get him out of the pocket. Letís see what heís really got when the game's on the line.
So Steve, if Roethlisberger is suspended for any substantial amount of time, no I donít foresee Dixon being able to lead the Steelers to the promised land. If he comes in and plays for an injured Roethlisberger, then yes. I think he can get it done in that sort of situation.
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