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Preseason Game 3

– Antonio Brown definitely looks like he is a star in the making. He might turn out to be a more versatile WR than Mike Wallace, hell, he might already be. He has all the signs of turning out to be a premier WR-  the fluid movement, hands, speed, and swagger. But he needs to cut out the stupid showboating like when he started taunting the CB with the ball on his first TD in today’s game. This is a disturbing trend I’ve noticed with some of the players on this team. Cut out the stupid bullshit, not only is it embarrassing to watch as a fan, it could end up costing the Steelers a win at some point.

– Speaking of Mike Wallace, where has he been in preseason? He’s been like the invisible man. He still needs to work on his game. I wouldn’t even call Wallace a premier WR in the NFL yet. Blasphemy? I don’t think so. He is largely a one dimensional WR right now, albeit a very dangerous one dimensional WR. For example, in last night’s game, Ben threw the ball to him late but Wallace didn’t come up to fight for the ball and it was almost intercepted. He needs to work on being more of a physical WR willing to run more routes than a deep post or a deep sideline route.

– The defense wasn’t very impressive. The pass defense (from LB’s to DB’s) looks poor as usual. What’s bizarre to me is Mike Tomlin was interviewed at halftime and noted that the CB’s are giving up too much space to the WR’s. Is Mike Tomlin not familiar with Lebeau’s defense? Did he miss the CB’s routinely (as always under Lebeau) lining up 10 yards off the LOS in the game? There’s one play in the 1st half where the Falcons faced a 3rd and 4. Where were the CB’s? 10 yards off the LOS of course. The result was an easy 1st down completion. The Falcons went on to almost score a TD on the drive. They would’ve if not for an offensive PI call on TE Anthony Gonzalez who had a TD catch called back. This is simply the way Lebeau’s pass defense has played for years and I haven’t seen anything in preseason to indicate things will magically change once the regular season starts.

– Why was James Farrior assigned to cover Roddy White on the Falcon’s 2nd quarter TD? This happened last year with the same results. It’s complete lunacy. Maybe Troy didn’t do a good enough job over the top on coverage but it’s absurd to have one of the slowest LB’s on the team covering a WR. Any competent offense in the NFL is going to rip that apart every time.

– Marcus Gilbert looked good enough to be called starter at LT when the real season starts. He struggled a couple times against pass rush specialist John Abraham(Hey the guy is a 12 year vet who had 13 sacks last year). What I like about Gilbert is he seems to actually give a shit out there, which is more than I can say for about half the O-linemen that have played for the Steelers since Ben has been the QB (Marvel Smith, Trai Essex, Willie Colon, Max Starks, the list goes on and on).

– The O-line as a whole didn’t look so hot. Trai Essex, Willie Colon, Tony Hills are all mediocre at best. The short yardage run game is still a failure and pass protection was mediocre.

– Can Stevenson Sylvester and Jason Worilds please get some legit playing time this year?

– Ben had a couple great passes where he looked off the coverage to get some big completions, including the 77 yard TD pass to Antonio Brown. But he struggled with a couple short passes and somehow overthrew a wide open Hines Ward downfield that would’ve resulted in an easy TD. Ben’s deep ball could definitely be more consistent.

– Is Camp Cupcake still in effect or are the Steelers just experiencing some real bad luck? I have no idea, but there were 5 Steelers that went down with injuries in tonight’s game, most concerning is the injuries to CB Keenan Lewis (who looked to be turning a corner as a corner) and Byron Leftwich, who looked to be in bad shape as he left the field with an injury to his non-throwing arm. Not good, obviously, especially if Leftwich can’t go (Batch? Dixon? NOOOOOO).

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