Quarterbacks under pressure

For all intents and purposes, you will have two rookie quarterbacks facing each other when the Dolphins take on the Pittsburgh Steelers. Because of an injury to starter Tommy Maddox, Pittsburgh first-round pick Ben Roethlisberger will be making his first NFL start. For the Dolphins, A.J. Feeley will be making his seventh career start.

Because of the inexperience at that all-important position, you can expect both the Dolphins and Steelers to do a lot of blitzing on Sunday ... or whenever the game is played.

The Dolphins did a lot of it last Sunday night against new Bengals starting quarterback Carson Palmer, and they had very good success with it.

Safety Antuan Edwards brought the heat frequently from the nickel position, and he got to Palmer for a sack and another play where he batted the ball at the line of scrimmage right into the waiting arms of defensive end Jason Taylor.

The Dolphins are hoping to have Patrick Surtain back against Pittsburgh, and it will he who lines up at the nickel spot, so the honor of coming after Roethlisberg will go to him.

The Dolphins also sent linebackers Junior Seau and Zach Thomas after Palmer, and they should do the same against the Steelers.

Pittsburgh is very high on the potential of Roethlisberger, but he is likely to make some mistakes in the early going, and that's where the Dolphins want to capitalize.

On the other hand, Dolphins fans know too well the struggles the offense has had protecting the quarterback. Add to that the fact that Pittsburgh likes blitzing to begin with, and you can expect a heavy dose of linebackers and defensive backs coming after Feeley in passing situations.

The opportunity for big plays will be there for both teams because of all the blitzing that should be in store, and maybe the game will come down to whatever team can connect on one of those.


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