Jim Wexell: There's always a good chance the Chargers could get a sack or two here, but the Steelers are calling quicker plays and have been more attuned to the problem. It's become chic to blame this on "Roethlisberger holding the ball too long," but it's more a combination of poor line play, no running game and poor play-calling that's doing in the QB.
RB Willie Parker
JW: Willie Parker will play with a shoulder harness, but his knee should be fine and that's what you deal with from Parker: his wheels. While Mewelde Moore is capable, he's not the threat to break it that Parker is.
ML: The Chargers have been brutalized by opposing tight ends all season. With that in mind, how big a role will TE Heath Miller play in the passing game?
JW: Heath Miller will not play because of a high ankle sprain. Backup TE Matt Spaeth, who offensive coordinator Bruce Arians had to have in the third round of the 2007 draft instead of an O-lineman or fullback, will play with a broken hand.
ML: LB LaMarr Woodley is a player the Chargers looked at closely before the 2007 draft. Talk about his impact and his ability take advantage of the attention given to James Harrison on the other side.
LB James Harrison
ML: The Steelers lead the NFL in total defense, ranking in the top-two against both the run and the pass. Where is the chink in the armor?
JW: There really is no chink in the armor, unless you consider boneheaded offensive play-calling. The offense takes too many risks when it should be relying on its defense more. It's the best defense in Pittsburgh since the last hurrah of the Steel Curtain in 1978.
ML: What's the state of Pittsburgh's special teams? Who are the Steelers' top cover men that will be responsible for keeping Darren Sproles in check?
JW: The Steelers have really improved their coverage units. Anthony Madison and William Gay are outstanding punt gunners, and Keyaron Fox is another upgrade. But the return men are awful. Last week, Gary Russell, the big tailback, replaced Najeh Davenport and took one back to the 40. It was an awesome sight for Steelers fans.
Jim Wexell's new book, Steeler Nation: A Pittsburgh Team, An American Phenomenon, is available at PittsburghSportsPublishing.com.