The Pittsburgh Steelers’ stagnant offense has been a real problem this season, and an almost weekly source of drama. The team has changed quarterbacks, fans have called for a new offensive coordinator, nothing has worked.
Head coach Mike Tomlin said Tuesday he’s open to another possible change — elevating rookie Jaylen Warren to the No. 1 running back slot. A reporter asked Tomlin if he would consider making the undrafted rookie the feature back for the Steelers.
“You know he’s a quality back that’s made some plays,” Tomlin said (via the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review). “We’ll keep giving him an opportunity to do so, and maybe he’ll write that script.”
Such a move would come at the expense of current starter Najee Harris. The second-year back had almost 1,700 total yards and 10 touchdowns as a rookie, but suffered a lisfranc foot injury in training camp and lacks the burst he showed last year. He’s averaging only 3.3 yards per carry.
Warren has made the most of limited playing time this year as the third-down back, averaging 5.3 yards on 29 carries. That includes a great performance in the loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 9 (six carries for 50 yards, three receptions for 25 yards) that led to speculation he will get more playing time going forward.
“Both guys (Harris and Warren) have been available to us,” Tomlin said. “We’ve gotten some awesome contributions from Jaylen, and it’s reasonable to expect that to continue.”