For starters, Steelers thrive, Eagles dive

Updated: January 5, 2005, 4:44 PM ET
Scouts Inc.
Editor's note: Our scouts roll back the tape on Week 17 in the NFL:

  • The Steelers still played their physical style despite having given most starters the day off. By running the ball 43 times and dominating time of possession, it sends a message to the rest of the league that this team can play smash-mouth football with all 53 guys. The depth of their roster was never more apparent than on Sunday.

  • The Eagles rested their starters for the second straight game and enter the playoffs with two straight "ugly" losses and no momentum. However, the Eagles will tell you that they will get their "swagger" back by going into the playoffs healthy. But three fumbles, two interceptions and three sacks is not exactly how you want to march into the playoffs. With the exception of WR Freddie Mitchell (six catches and a touchdown), the Eagles' passing game consisted of dump-offs to backs and safe passes to tight ends, but no big plays. Who is going to step up and make the big plays at receiver in the playoffs?