Steelers-Brown Recap

December 30, 2013 Leave a comment

Steelers beat the Browns fairly easily at home 20-7.

The Browns game was a snoozer, Steelers win in typical fashion. Bell continues to look good. Ben had an OK day. Defense looked good at times, real bad at other times especially against the run. Same story.

The real story of the day is the stars almost aligned for the Steelers to make it into the playoffs…almost. The Steelers would’ve made it had the Chiefs beaten the Chargers which went into OT after the Chiefs kicker missed a 41 yard FG at the end of regulation. What a letdown. What a heartbreaker after the Ravens and Dolphins both lost earlier in the day and the Steelers took care of their business, all which needed to happen for the Steelers to stay alive.

It’s also too bad that the Steelers didn’t take care of business earlier in the year – starting 0-4 and with losses to the Titans, Bears (at home), Vikings, Raiders, Dolphins (at home in the snow in a virtual must-win situation). It would’ve taken a miracle to make it in and it almost happened but the Steelers in the end have no one to blame but themselves. When you’re relying on a team of backups to win a game on the road and the hope of decent NFL officiating to get you in you know you did something wrong. And boy did the refs screw the Steelers in the Chiefs-Chargers game. The Chargers attempted a fake punt in OT and it appeared the runner had the ball stripped but the refs didn’t even review the play.

What really doesn’t make sense on the play is if the runner had crossed the first down marker (seriously, check the video replay on then he fumbled the ball, because he fumbles or has the ball stripped right at around the 1st down marker. Where  do the refs draw the line on a play like this? An explanation is definitely owed by the NFL on this. Very bizarre that the refs didn’t stop the play to at least look at it. Instead the ref (the incompetent Bill Leavy) simply said “the runner gained the line to gain” or some horseshit. So, uh, that means what? No fumble? Sounds good. The officiating in the NFL is a complete joke.

As for the Steelers maybe they will start the season off next year with a little more urgency. Maybe the team will finally realize that all 16 games count. Tomlin needs to go but anyone hoping for that to happen will be in for a disappointment for sure, especially after the Steelers managed to almost make it into the playoffs. Will that be the ceiling going forward with this team under Tomlin – almost making into the playoffs? Good enough! I shudder to think. Let’s hope for some good moves in the offseason and a decent draft.

Categories: Steeler Articles

Steelers-Packers Recap

December 23, 2013 Leave a comment

Steelers win another crazy one, 38-31, on the road against the Matt Flynn-led Packers.

The Good - Antonio Brown made some nice plays, including a deep grab in the 1st half and a great punt return. He also broke the Steelers single season receiving yard record, very nice!

- Steelers defense holding the Packers offense to FG attempts on a couple of drives deep inside the 5 yard line. One was actually blocked.

- A few players on defense – Heyward, Sylvestor, Worilds, Timmons and Troy all made some really nice plays, especially in applying pressure on Flynn and causing TO’s. Heyward had another pass deflection at the line of scrimmage. Cortez Allen had a really solid day including a pick 6 in the 2nd half.

- The fake punt conversion. Very nice, surprisingly accurate pass downfield by the punter on the play.

- The O-line played another solid game all around.

The Good/Bad –  Bell had a hundred yards rushing and the O-line looked great against a bad Packers run defense. Steelers still too conservative though. This is how the Steelers obviously want to play and when there is any success at all they always, like clockwork, go back to it way too much in games. This game was no exception. It’s not 1995 and Jerome Bettis, a power running game and an all-pro O-line is no longer the Steelers identity. Accept it, move on. This team did accept this in previous weeks but bad habits are hard to break I guess.

The Bad - Ben had a decent game, including scampering for a TD, but a number of his passes seemed off especially on some deeper throws and on a crucial 3rd and short at the end of the game, missing Bell on a short pass.

- Seeing the defense look horrible for most of the 1st half. Kiesel was back in the lineup and looked bad for a good bit of the game. He did get a sack and fumble recovery in the 2nd half though. Run defense bad as ever. Watching huge cushions in snowy weather against a GB offense with a backup QB playing. What kind of message does that send to your team? The defense tightened somewhat to begin the 2nd half but crumbled again as the game went on. There were some great individual efforts at times as illustrated above but as a whole this defense needs some help.

- Why is Ryan Clark still playing? This is another case of the Steelers coaching staff playing favorites with vets, which just hurts the team.

- The complete clusterfuck on the final offensive drive of the1st half resulting in only 3 points instead of a TD. Once again Tomlin wastes a TO earlier in the half which combined with too many runs and too much clock between snaps = poorly prepared and coached team settling for a FG.  This kind of series has happened numerous times  and is indicative of a Tomlin coached. This is what you get.

- The opening drive of the 2nd half. The Steelers seemingly aware that they are still alive for a playoff spot decide to pucker it up per usual under Tomlin.

- The conservative approach with roughly 4:30 left in the game, tied, after the Steelers converted a 4th and 1 at midfield. Classic Tomlin. Classic loser schizo ball mindset. Aggressive to go for it but then go completely conservative after. The results – 2 run plays and a failed 3rd and 5, punt. This kind of approach basically puts all the pressure on the QB to convert the 1st down on 1 play. If they had succeeded on this play, there’s a good chance the next set of plays would be the same with all the pressure on Ben to convert on a 3rd down. This is low percentage ball with the game on the line, just stupid, playing with no heart.

- Ben seemingly audibling (?) to run plays with mostly mixed results.

- Bell with a fumble at the Steelers 3 yard line. That can’t happen. Bell also had another drop in this game. He is a good receiving RB but there does seem to be a pattern of him dropping a ball or 2 each game so far this season.

The Real Bad - The final sequences of the game courtesy of probably the dumbest head coach in the NFL, Mike Tomlin. A Packers penalty gives the Steelers offense a fresh set of downs inside the Packers 10. The offense has a 2nd down with GB now out of time outs, with 1:28 left in the game. TAKE TIME OFF THE CLOCK. It’s arguably more important than scoring a TD and the ensuing kickoff and Packers return more than showed that. If the Steelers had simply kneeled down on the ball it would’ve taken the clock all the way down to virtually no time left instead of the minute and a half the Steelers left on the clock for the Packers. Kick the FG, win the game, no time left. This kind of stupidity never changes. Fire Tomlin! I can’t take it anymore. It’ll be a miracle if the Steelers even make it back to the playoffs with this numbnuts at the helm. Why? Because it’s pretty hard for a team to find consistent success with a bad head coach.

The Embarrassing - The refs giving the ball back to the Packers with a 1st down after they had a FG blocked. Why? Because they ruled that Ziggy Hood illegally forwarded the ball or some such bullshit. They then explained that since the Steelers never had possession of the ball it would be given back to the Packers. I don’t think I have ever seen a more absurd call or rule in all of football. NFL just keeps  getting more and more unwatchable. The Packers would then score a TD. So basically a team is penalized for a good play (blocked FG) while the other team who had their FG attempt blocked is rewarded with better field position and a 1st down. Yep, sounds about right. Tomlin tried to challenge the play as it looked like Ryan Clark did indeed have possession before stupidly trying to pitch the ball back to another Steeler player. An all around big embarrassment for the NFL. Business as usual for Goodell.

Summary – The Steelers play with some heart today although it seemed like the team as a whole went back to the puckered up conservative ball which has plagued the team for some time under Tomlin. Tomlin never learns is what we have learned today. Neither team played very well to be honest, with mistakes and blunders everywhere. Believe it or not, the Steelers remain alive for a playoff spot going into the final weekend of the regular season. Do they deserve it? Nope. Will they get it? Probably not. Will they win next week anyways? Probably, which will drop them in the draft of course. And thus, the Steelers saga under Tomlin continues. Let’s see how it all plays it next week, it should be exciting at least.

Categories: Steeler Articles

Steelers-Bengals Recap

December 16, 2013 Leave a comment

Steelers get virtually every break in the 1st half and hold onto win in fairly comfortable fashion, 30-20 over the Bengals at home.

The Good – The offense continues with the wide open aggressive approach with mostly good results. There was a good bit of no-huddle in the 1st half. Ben looks to be in complete control of the offense and played well. O-line continues to play well, which is fantastic to see. It’s strange that in this disappointing season that one of the biggest issues that this team has had for some time, the O-line, has actually quietly improved even with injuries as the season has progressed. Part of that has to do with wide open offense and Ben getting rid of the ball quicker. Credit Haley for some of that.

- Bell continues to play solidly and consistently, over 100 all-purpose yards.

- Dwyer and Felix Jones helped to chip in with some quality runs in the 2nd half. Dwyer looked great in particular on a pitch sweep play.

- The defense looked very active early on. Hood actually got a sack on a stunt play as Heyward absorbed two blocks on the play, freeing up Hood. Heyward continues to impress.

- Troy was all over the field. Guy can still play.

- Antonio Brown, TD punt return.

- Suisham with an impressive 45 yard FG in the open end of Heinz Field with a ton of wind to contend with. Very impressive.

The Bad - It got a little bit uncomfortable in the 2nd half as the Steelers once again let off the gas and allowed the Bengals to creep slowly back into the game. The Steelers defense went into prevent about midway through the 3rd quarter. The Bengals pulled within 10, 20-30 midway 4th quarter and would’ve been within 8 if they had converted on a 2 point conversion. Jarvis Jones tipped the pass on the 2 point conversion play.

- Ryan Clark, that’s all.

The Hilarious - Lamar Woodley going out in seemingly the first series of the game with his recurring calf injury. Watch the Steelers re-sign this guy to a 5 year contract.

The Sad – Does anybody actually live in Pittsburgh these days? Weird to see a virtually half empty stadium the last few games.

Stupidest Thing Said All Year – Collinsworth commenting that things would’ve been much different for the Steelers this year if only Pouncey hadn’t gone down with his injury in the opening game of the season. Clearly this numbnuts does not watch the actual games, not even the ones he’s actually covering. The O-line has progressively played better and Velasco has actually played better at center than Pouncey has in a long time. Hell, Cody Wallace at least looks like he gives a damn out there which is an improvement over Pouncey

The Rah-Rah’s - Tomlin has been in a real “Rah-Rah” mode in the last couple of weeks. I’m guessing it’s to overcompensate for his lack of actual coaching. “See, guys? It’s all about execution!” One thing I’ve noticed through the years – whenever a head coach is going full on rah-rah on any and every positive play, no matter how small, it’s a sure sign that the head coach is actually pretty clueless as a coach and probably a little desperate.

Summary – How fitting that the Steelers win a game late in the season now that it virtually doesn’t matter. Watch this team win the final two games, miss the playoffs and drop in the draft. With a strong finish like that no coaching changes necessary. Rinse, repeat for next year, can’t wait! Sometimes I feel like I’m slowly losing my mind watching this team under Tomlin and the Rooneys.

Categories: Steeler Articles

Steelers-Dolphins Recap

December 8, 2013 Leave a comment

The Steelers lose a big game at home in a crazy one, 34-28, to the Dolphins.

The Good – Outside of some drives in the 1st half Haley called a great game. End of discussion. He went back to a wide open aggressive offense that revolves around the franchise QB, Ben, with good results. Pass to set up the run which is how it should always be with this offense.

- Ben had a solid game finishing with 3 TD passes and almost 300 yards against a tough Dolphin defense. He did, however, have some bad plays at the end of the game including taking a sack with a minute left in the game and attempting to run for the first down on 4th and 10 on the previous drive. He also attempted a deep sideline pass on a 3rd and 3 in the 1st half. All really dumb decisions. But as we all know with Ben you take the good with the bad.

- The beat up O-line had a very solid game for the most part. Pretty solid pass coverage and run blocking.

- Bell had another really good game, finishing with over 4 yards a carry and snagging some passes. He did have a couple of drops in the 2nd half.

- Cameron Heyward – Manimal. Sack, tipped ball on 3rd down almost resulting in an INT, hustling all over the field making one handed tackles on ball carriers. Guy is the real deal.

- Jason Worilds huge sack on a 3rd down early in the 4th quarter.

- 3rd and 1 play action to Heath Miller in the 2nd half was a thing of beauty. Dolphins nor anyone was expecting a pass on that play after a 2nd and 1 deep incompletion.  The next play Antonio Brown takes a short pass and runs for a 43 yard TD. Very nice.

- On the next series, Troy picking off Tannehill and running it in for a Steelers score and just like that 21-17 Steelers after trailing 17-7 just minutes earlier. Troy almost had a pick 6 in the 1st quarter. Needs to be said again, guy can still play.

- Troy and Heyward came to play but not so much everyone else. After the Steelers took back the lead 21-17, the defense has another patented letdown series as the Dolphins drive down the field and score a TD to take the lead back 21-24.

The Bad – Like the well coached team they are, the Steelers clearly thought and played like they had the game in the bag up comfortably 7-0 in the 1st quarter. The rest of the half the Steelers would have a punt blocked, play 10 yard cushions on defense inside their 15, forget to cover a back out of the backfield resulting in an easy TD for the Dolphins and have Ben fumble the ball for a Fins recovery inside Steeler territory.  Score at halftime – Dolphins lead 10-7.

– Lots of bad penalties at the worst times. Sign of a disciplined and well coached team. Clearly.

- As previously mentioned, down 10-7 in the 2nd quarter, Steelers and Ben attempt a deep pass on 3rd and 3. Just dumb and low percentage, especially in bad weather.

- Cortez Allen whiffing on a deep sideline pass on a 3rd and 4 resulting in a big catch for the Dolphins in the 3rd quarter.

- The overall soft effort by the defense as the game progressed against a Dolphins team that hadn’t scored over 28 in a game all year. The Dolphins offense scored 24 in just the 2nd half alone today. Changes need to be made. It’s unreal how consistent this defense has become at letdown drives at the worst possible times in games and today was no different. Forget “stats” that say this defense has been #1 or in the top 5 in recent years, it’s completely misleading.

- Like clockwork the Steelers waste 2 TO’s in the 2nd half. One early in the 4th quarter with the game clock actually winding down ON the Dolphins offense, unbelievable and another with the Steelers facing a 4th down with 2:33 left in the game. To top things off, the Steelers turn the ball over on downs and then decide not to use a TO before the 2 minute warning after a Dolphins run. WTF???? The Dolphins cannot get a first down where they are at, completely retarded decision. It’s just a waste of time off the clock. Tomlin is a bad head coach, it needs to be said time and again. Under Tomlin, the Steelers have become without a doubt the most frustrating team to watch that I’ve ever seen as a fan. No hope in sight until this guy is shown the door.

- Lamar Woodley was back in the starting lineup and once again was invisible for most of the game. There was one or two plays where he almost gets to Tannehill for the sack. That was about it.

- Rookie LB Jarvis Jones continually getting sucked to the inside on a number of PA rollout/read option plays resulting in some big plays for the Dolphins offense.

- Watching Cortez Allen and Troy both miss tackles on Dolphins RB Clay as he goes in for the TD at the end of the 4th quarter giving the Dolphins the go ahead lead 31-28. Clay made the Steelers defense his bitch all game long. This drive was all of 4 plays starting deep in Dolphin territory. Unreal.

- Ryan Clark taking out Ike Taylor in the 2nd half with a helmet to helmet hit. I think he might be a saboteur at this point.

The Real Bad - The horrendous “hitting a defenseless player” penalty on Ryan Clark in the 2nd half. Fuck off, NFL. I’m just about done with this league. In the 2nd half Antonio Brown would take a really hard hit immediately to his back on a short pass, no call as the fans booed the refs on the play. And this is why this rule is completely bullshit, it makes no sense in how it’s called or what it even means. Do the refs just throw the flag on hits they think look particularly bad? Another bullshit penalty later on a holding call on DeCastro on a super quick WR screen play. Give me a fucking break, refs. Even Fouts was flabbergasted at the call. Quickest holding penalty ever!

The Weird - With 22 seconds left in the 1st half  the Dolphins elect not to go for it on a 4th and 2 and instead attempt a 52 yard FG in snowy conditions at Heinz Field. Did Mike Tomlin switch teams? The kick of course was short.

Summary – With this loss the Steelers slim playoff hopes are done unless a real miracle happens. And honestly the Steelers don’t deserve to make the playoffs with the way they’ve coached and played this season, especially considering the ridiculously easy schedule they’ve played. Tomlin obviously needs to go and I hate to say it but so does Lebeau. It’s time to move on, the question is how long it takes the FO and Rooneys to make the change because it ain’t getting better with this coaching staff in place and recent history has clearly shown that. Let’s hope for some major changes in the offseason. They are sorely needed.

Categories: Steeler Articles

Steelers-Ravens Recap

November 29, 2013 Leave a comment

The Steelers play like losers for a good bit of the game only to come roaring back but ultimately come up short in the end as they lose a big road game to the hated Ravens, 22-20.

The Good – The offense finally started to click in the 2nd half and tallied 20.

- The O-line did not allow a sack once again. Really great to see.

- Bell had one of his best games of his career until he was knocked out of the game. Big run in the 3rd quarter and a number of catches including a big 1st down catch and run on a 2nd and 24 in the fourth quarter resulting in a 1st down.

- The defense played better in the 2nd half, some decent pressure was generated. Jason Worilds looked really good once again filling in for the injured Lamar Woodley. Time to see what team wants Woodley, maybe the Steelers can package Pouncey into the trade.

The Bad – As I alluded to last week and what I hoped wouldn’t happen but definitely expected, the Steelers gameplan was to pucker up as they always do against the Ravens and I guess hope to win a close nail biter in the end. This kind of approach is basically a self-fulfilling prophecy and it’s a gameplan of a team that is coached scared. The end result is what we saw in this game.

- The offensive gameplan in the first half. See above. The Steelers take the opening kickoff and proceed to run the ball 3 straight times and punt. Why not just kickoff instead? The Steelers followed that up with 2 more unsuccessful handoffs before finally giving Ben a chance to throw the ball. What is this shit? Come on. It basically set the tempo for the rest of the half and no points scored for 2 quarters of play.

- Speaking of Ben, he finished with decent numbers and on a few throws his WR’s let him down but overall a really scattershot performance with a number of throws short armed and some questionable decision making.

- Antonio Brown failing to locate a deep pass that would’ve resulted in a TD.

- The botched snap on a 50 yard FG attempt in the 1st half. Horrible execution obviously but worse, horrible decision to attempt it. Coaching scared, coaching not to lose. It was a 4th and 6 at the Ravens 32 with the team down 7. Just go for it. On a previous drive and already down 7, the Steelers faced a 4th and 6 at the Ravens 37 and the Steelers punted. Coaching scared, coaching not to lose was the theme of the game until the Steelers were basically forced to get aggressive in the 2nd half.

- What exactly was going on in the Steelers secondary in the 1st half? They looked completely clueless out there, like they hadn’t even gameplanned for this game. Safeties were no where to be seen on a number of deep throws, CB’s couldn’t locate balls. It was bad.

- The 2 point conversion. Why, why, why was Manny Sanders the intended target on what was basically the play of the game? Sanders had a bad game up to that point, why not target Brown or Cotchery who have been much more reliable this season? Dumb team.

The Embarrassing – Tomlin almost getting run over on a big Ravens kick return as he was basically standing in the field before realizing at the last second what was going on. He’s lucky he wasn’t penalized. Was Tomlin on drugs in this game? He sure looked like it. Just another notch to add to his legacy.

- Bell’s TD run in the 4th quarter being reviewed and reversed due to the NFL’s new helmet rule of calling the play dead as soon as a runners helmet comes off. Great job, NFL. This is the result of a league introducing more and more convoluted rules into the game year after year. Hopefully this play makes the competition committee realize how stupid this rule is considering the outcome of this play and adjusts accordingly. The ruling on this play is simply unacceptable and it did play a big role in the outcome of the game. Complete horseshit.

Summary – Once again Tomlin puts his mediocre stamp onto the team. Botched FG attempts, almost impeding a kickoff returner, dumb decisions and predictably stale gameplans. This game illustrates why this team is in the hole that it is in. Even after 3 straight wins THIS is why it’s hard to picture this team putting together the kind of run that will get them into the playoffs. Even if the Steelers win the next 2, they will have another one of these games in the 3rd game, rinse repeat.

Categories: Steeler Articles

Steelers-Browns Recap

November 24, 2013 Leave a comment

Steelers slowly pull away from the Browns, 27-11, en route to a fairly easy victory on the road.

The Good – The story of the game was an opportunistic  Steelers defense against what turned out to be a fairly inept Browns offense. The Steelers defense scored their first defensive TD of the year on a Willie Gay pick six in the 4th quarter. Earlier in the game, Gay blitzed and got a sack/forced fumble in which Will Allen picked up and returned all the way down to inside the Browns 5 yard line, resulting in a Ben TD pass to Manny Sanders, 20-3 Steelers, huge play. Troy played a very solid game, forcing 2 fumbles (recovering one) and almost snagging an interception. The talk of getting rid of Troy is simply crazy talk, the guy is still playing at a very high level.

- Suisham making a long and very tough FG on the opening drive of the game in windy conditions in the Mistake by the Lake.

-  Ben’s 41 yard TD pass to Brown at the end of the 1st half. The ball was actually underthrown (a Ben staple on deep passes) and Brown actually gets the ball stripped by Browns CB Joe Haden but the loose ball luckily lands on Brown’s chest as he lay on his back good for the TD.

- Jason Worilds, playing for an injured Lamar Woodley, created consistent pressure for most of the game. One highlight in particular, a bullrush all the way to Browns QB Wheeden creating a hurried incompletion. This kind of consistent pressure in a game hasn’t been seen since James Harrison was on the team. Like with Pouncey being injured, this could be a blessing in disguise for the Steelers. Time to cut some overpaid dead weight perhaps.

- Cam Heyward continues to make his case for best D-lineman on the team with another solid game, including a big sack on 3rd and 2 as the Browns were driving in Steelers territory in the 2nd quarter. Heyward also recovered a strip sack from Polamalu in the 2nd half.

- Watching the O-line play another solid game, let’s keep it up.

The Bad – Steelers calling a run play on 3rd and 7 on the opening drive of the game, resulting in no yards and a long FG attempt. Really bad call. The Steelers offense, starting with this call, would stall until the end of the half when the playcalling opened up more in cold and windy Cleveland. Disappointing but not surprising, this would end with Ben’s 41 yard TD to Brown with about 2 minutes left in the half. This offense is only successful at scoring points with an aggressive gameplan, it’s been shown time and again. If the Steelers continue to turn it around this is imperative.

- Rookie Bell had a couple of drops, including a bad one on 3rd down inside the Browns redzone where the Steelers had to settle for a FG.

- LB Timmons looked real slow in pass coverage, allowing multiple 3rd down pickups in the 1st half with some spotty coverage.

Summary – With 3 straight wins now the Steelers are back in the hunt for the Wildcard spot or even the division title. On Thanksgiving the Steelers face off against the Ravens in what has suddenly become a huge game for both teams. Let’s hope Tomlin and the Steelers don’t pucker up in this one as it happens so often when the Steelers get on a roll, let’s come out guns blazing! Ravens suck! Especially this year, complete frauds.

Categories: Steeler Articles

Steelers-Lions Recap

November 17, 2013 Leave a comment

Steelers win a crazy, topsy-turvy  home game, 37-27, over the Megatron Lions.

The Good – Steelers get off to a big start with 2 big Antonio Brown catch and run TD receptions and lead in the 1st half at one point 17-3. Steelers offense comes out aggressive and surprise surprise it pays off. Brown had another great game, although he did bobble a TD pass in the 2nd half.

- Missing in action rookie Markus Wheaton showing a nice burst of speed on a short crosser and run reception in the 1st half. The kid finishes with 3 grabs.

- New punter old guy McBriar finally boots a nice punt in the 2nd half, pinning the Lions deep in their own territory.

- Veteran WR Cotchery after having a rough start, has a really nice 4th quarter, a TD grab and another nifty catch, spin and run down to the GL.

- Speaking of which, very smart and aggressive playcall and execution to seal the victory for the Steelers on a fake bubble screen, fade pass to Cotchery for his TD grab at the end of the 4th quarter.

- Watching Ben amass almost 400 yards passing, 4 TD passes and no INT’s.

- Rookie RB Bell continues to be a legit threat in the passing game, which included snagging a short pass and running upfield for 43 yards in the 1st half.

- Will Allen with a huge INT and return of about 30 yards or so at the end of the 4th quarter with the Steelers leading by 3.

- Jason Worilds showing some nice hustle and speed on a big sack on Stafford in the 3rd quarter, resulting in a punt and almost a safety. Steelers offense gets the ball back in Lions territory, resulting in….

- The patchwork O-line played well in pass protection. Decastro and Velasco are keepers.

The Bad –  Steelers in the redzone today before the final TD (which was from the 20)- 1 TD, 3 FG’s. Not going to get the job done normally. Some spotty playcalling, but mostly poor execution.

- End of 1st half, with the Steelers lead shortened 20-17 and with 3 minutes left Haley calls for a bubble screen on 3rd and 10. Bullshit conservative loser ball call. Amazingly, the Lions would end up scoring 10 more points to close out the half with a 27-20 lead. Even more amazingly, it easily could’ve been 31-20.

- Watching Ike Taylor drop an easy INT where the ball literally hits him right in the freaking chest. The next play, Megatron 23 yard catch. Later, he would drop another, albeit tougher, pass. Taylor is a very good cover CB but the fact that his hands are so bad does indeed hurt him as a defensive player.

- Why was Ike Taylor left all alone covering Calvin Johnson for most of the game? There is no CB that can successfully do that in the NFL. Taylor gave it his all but it’s just crazy to hope for success all game with that approach. And constantly Ryan Clark would look for anyone else to cover instead of helping out over top against Megatron. Why is Clark even starting at this point?

- Why was Ike Taylor left all alone covering Calvin Johnson for most of the game? There is no CB that can successfully do that in the NFL. Taylor gave it his all but it’s just crazy to hope for success all game with that approach. And constantly Ryan Clark would look for anyone else to cover instead of helping out over top against Megatron. Why is Clark even starting at this point? It seemed like some adjustments were made at halftime, which was good to see.

- Some of Ben’s passes were really off early in the 2nd half, including one where Ben literally threw the ball right to a Lions LB on a slant play, luckily it was dropped.

- Ben overthrowing TE David Paulson who was completely uncovered in the endzone on 2nd and goal from the one. On 3rd and goal Bell falls down losing yards, resulting in a FG instead of tying TD. Barf. Horrible call on 3rd and goal, go all out.

The Bizarre – The Lions getting stopped on a fake FG in the 4th quarter leading 27-23. A FG would’ve given them a 7 point lead. Going for the kill I guess, bizarre call nonetheless.

Megatron had 0 receptions in the 2nd half. Lions 0 points. Coincidence?

Summary – Overall, a fun game to watch a nice win. The Steelers offense looked great at times, but consistency and execution could still be much better, especially in the redzone. Time clock management is also still an issue. Steelers defense played decently, pass rush and run defense need much improvement. Steelers playoff hopes remain alive, but chances remain slim. Next week a road trip to Cleveland who got hammered today by the Bengals, they will be pumped up for this game no doubt.

Categories: Steeler Articles

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