Steelers getting back to sacking the quarterback

Steelers defensive tackle Stephon Tuitt picks up a sack of Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco last Thursday night. 

Jason Bridge/Jason Bridge-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Steelers are bringing pressure that opposing quarterbacks haven't seen in five years. 

The Steelers are on pace for 56 sacks after notching 14 in the first four games. They are well on their way to eclipsing last year's total of just 33 sacks, and could even threaten their league-leading total of 48 in 2010. 

Defensive tackle Stephon Tuitt leads the way with 3 1/2 sacks while Cameron Heyward and rookie Bud Dupree each have two. Tuitt credits the simplified game plans of new defensive coordinator Keith Butler, who wanted to make it a priority to unleash his front seven this season.

“Just simplifying the defense down to us and making us play,” Tuitt said via ESPN.com's Jeremy Fowler. “We all have the ability to do tremendous things on a football field, but it's all about the little things when you go against somebody. We're just going into games to play and compete.”

The Steelers still have a long way to go to match the overall prowess of their 2010 defensive unit, which allowed the fewest points against while finishing second in the NFL in yards allowed. Pittsburgh is currently 12th overall in average yardage allowed (346.0 per game) as issues with its revamped secondary remain. 

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