Problems normally aren't so bad that a team uses a trade to fix them but the Pittsburgh Steelers can't hope to win another Super Bowl the way they are now. Can they balance things out by dealing Emmanuel Sanders to the Buffalo Bills?
Ryan Fitzpatrick left with Stevie Johnson after David Nelson injury
Buffalo had high hopes going into 2012 but they were quickly replaced by reality. Not only did their pricey defense fail to stop an inept Jets offense, two key players on their own offense went down with injuries. Running back Fred Jackson is out for weeks with a knee problem while wide receiver David Nelson went out for the year with a torn ACL. The Bills were already thin on offense. Quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick could face serious problems with two of his favorite targets gone. He is left with backup runner C.J. Spiller and top target Stevie Johnson. Alone they are not enough to get Buffalo past the Jets and the New England Patriots. Unless they unearth a gem in their roster reserves over the next few weeks they may have to risk opening the package of draft picks to find help.
Late sacks of Ben Roethlisberger show problems with Steelers line
One team they could talk to are the Steelers. Pittsburgh like Buffalo has problems with injuries on offense. Half their starting offensive line is down as is top running back Rashard Mendenhall. This has left quarterback Ben Roethlisberger badly exposed to defensive pass rushes almost every game. It showed up against the Denver Broncos when he got sacked three times in a four-play span while trying to rally the Steelers late in the game. Ben is tough but some can argue various injuries last year had an effect on the offense in the playoffs. They risk repeating that disaster again unless the line issues get settled. A bigger reason is Pittsburgh has a host of talented receivers. Most know about All-Pro Mike Wallace and versatile Antonio Brown. With them it's easy to forget big-play man Emmanuel Sanders. This trio can match any defense in the league, something they boasted with the tough Jets secondary coming to town. It won't matter if Big Ben is on his back constantly. That is where the Buffalo trade comes in. The Bills have one of the better offensive lines in the league. Two of their starters, guards Andy Levitre and Kraig Urbik, both become free agents next season. It's not a stretch to think Buffalo might part with one of them for a playmaker like Sanders.
Player-for-player trades don't happen much but the Pittsburgh Steelers and Buffalo Bills both have a piece the other needs. Pittsburgh gets somebody reliable to protect Ben Roethlisberger while Buffalo replaces David Nelson with a more athletic and explosive Emmanuel Sanders.
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