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Steelers-Chargers Recap

The Steelers play one of their worst games of the year, losing 34-24 at home to the struggling Chargers.

The Good – Ben, coming back from injury, actually showed up and played well for most of the game. Too bad nobody else did on the offensive side of the ball.

– Ben’s perfect (but dangerous) pass and catch by Plaxico at the end of the 1st quarter on a 3rd and long. Ben’s a gunslinger, no doubt about that.

– Ben’s perfect TD bomb to Wallace in the 3rd quarter. That was a thing of beauty and Wallace actually held onto the ball! Amazing.

– Casy Hampton blowing up a 3rd and short run with a great run stop in the 2nd quarter at midfield.

– Lewis with great coverage on a 3rd and10 pass breakup after the Chargers WR seemingly got it. Best surprise of the 2012 is Lewis’ play, without a doubt.

– Nice open field tackle by youngster Cortez Allen in the 1st half. Later in the game, bad open field tackle, allowing a 1st down to Chargers RB Matthews.

–  With the Steelers unable to get past the 50 yard line until the very end of the 1st half and the Chargers constantly getting the ball at midfield, it was a miracle the score was only 13-3 at halftime.

– Mike Wallace rebounded from his usual bad drops to make a few nice catches late in the game. Too little, too late, though.

– Suisham’s long FG at the end of the 1st half to close the score to 10.

– Great effort by Foote  to get pressure on Rivers up the middle on a 3rd and short after the Steelers TD score.

The Bad – *Warning long list, lots of rantings of a possibly irrational (but often right) fan*

– Watching the Steelers constantly lose the battle of field position in the 1st half with bad punting, shoddy and flat play and predictable gameplanning.

– The predictable offensive gameplan. This gameplan summed up the game perfectly – let’s not try anything new, let’s just go through the predictable motions and hope that’s good enough to get the W. Predictable and ineffective run plays run with half-hearted execution, short and lazy bubble screens and end arounds to Wallace, etc. Chargers were all over that. Haley needs to do a better job of adjustments and gameplanning. When WR’s aren’t getting open or are having problems catching the ball, get the RB’s and Heath involved more. Make things easier for the WR’s, etc. When the  O-line is playing like shit and not giving the QB time give him shorter options, etc.

– Seeing Ziggy Hood get trucked by a RB for 3 or 4 yards before making the tackle. Too soft. Then watching him drop a ball thrown practically right to him two plays later. 1st round pick? If this guy was a 5th round pick he would’ve been cut by now. What a waste.

– Watching the usual early rust, especially on offense, little did I know this would be rust all game long until it didn’t matter.

– Another crappy punt by Butler. This guy’s performance on punts has really gone downhill. That’s not good.

– Watching all the predictable run plays and shoddy run blocking in the 1st quarter.

– Watching back to back offsides plays by the Steelers two best defenders – Polamalu and James Harrison, turning a 3rd and 10 into a 1st and 10 for the Chargers.

– First play on the Steelers drive after the Chargers score first – Colon with another false start. What a worthless pile of shit this guy is. Why was this guy in the starting lineup to begin with? Horrible decision.

– Jonathan Dwyer’s bad running vision. I like the kid’s attitude but far too often he is missing holes and running into guys in the backfield. A-level RB this guy is not.

– Another crappy punt by Butler. Time to look for another punter, it won’t happen but should.

– Some shoddy snaps by Pouncey. What the hell happened to this guy?

– Antonio Brown has not been the same since coming back from his injury. He seems a little bit more timid and he seems to have inherited Wallace’s hands. That’s concerning.

– Another drop by Wallace on a contested pass.

– Wallace dropping a crucial deep ball on a great pass by Ben considering he had to move up in a collapsing pocket to unload it. Another horrible effort by Wallace.

– O-line playing like crap a good bit of the game – bad run blocking, penalties, bad snaps, seeming indifference to Ben getting chased on every pass play.

– Watching Ben once again doing a great job of eluding another jail break and finding Brown downfield….where he promptly drops it. Great support, guys!

– Watching youngster Curtis Brown bite up and get burned for a TD, of course Ryan Clark is too slow to get over to help on the play.

– Ben was the Steelers leading rusher at halftime.

– The Steelers coming up short on a 4th and less than a yard at the end of the 2nd half. Why call such a predictable play when the run game and O-line has been dominated up to that point in the game? At least call something more unconventional. In the end that’s bad, overly safe coaching.

– As mentioned before, with the Steeler WR’s having a bad day and not getting open, why was the offensive gameplan not adjusted to use short passes to the RB’s and Miller?  Why is Miller always seemingly forgotten for stretches of games? He is the most reliable receiver on the team at this point.

– Seeing Mike Tomlin run over to pat Philip Rivers on the butt and have a good laugh with him after he scampers for 3 or 4 yards in the 3rd quarter. Hey, dumbass, your team is down by 10 at home and the Chargers are driving! This was shades of Cowher laughing it up on the sideline with Michael Vick in his final season as coach of the Steelers. Inexcusable bullshit considering the result today.

– Seeing Harrison looking like he has lost a step on the Rivers scamper play as he seemingly ran out of steam, trying to loop around a blocker.

– Seeing Clark with a SHITTY tackle/whiff on a 3rd and 13 run that went for a 1st down. Did Clark do one damn thing in this game?

– Watching the Chargers on the opening drive of the 2nd half, take almost 10 minutes of time and ending in a TD. Embarrassing. Don’t worry, guys, Tomlin has this, him and Rivers are best buddies now! What the hell was Lebeau doing on that drive? I honestly have no idea.

– What’s the first play after the Chargers score on that long drive? Well, after the usual holding call on the kickoff return, it’s a lazy backwards pass deflecting off  Steeler TE Paulson for a recovered fumble in the endzone for a TD for the Chargers!  Implosion COMPLETE! The overhead angle looked like it was slightly going forward but the refs are dumbfucks and the Steelers honestly didn’t deserve to have the call reversed with the way they played, especially considering Brown didn’t even attempt to recover the ball in the endzone on the play. Instead he just sort of stood over it like a dumbass which makes sense since this team might be the dumbest in the NFL.

– Fake punt conversion for the Chargers, deep in Chargers territory. Unbelievable. Sometimes, a team (and coach) with nothing to lose is the most dangerous opponent. Especially when your own team’s coach is a dumbass.

– More ST penalties. One, a holding call in the 4th quarter cost the Steelers 27 yards after Brown had a nice punt return. AWESOME job correcting this, Tomlin! Better fire someone ASAP! Are the Steelers going to break the record for most ST penalties in a season? Could be close!

– Ben’s INT in the 4th quarter. The final nail in what has been one of the most embarrassing losses since maybe the Browns game of 2009.

– Not going for 2 after the Steelers scored a TD with 6 minutes left in the game. That would’ve brought it to a 2 score game instead of a 3 score (3 possession) game. GREAT coaching, Tomlin. No onside kick on the ensuing kickoff. probably because the ST doesn’t even practice that play during the week. Best young head coach in the NFL!

– The funny thing is the Steelers scored another TD with about minute left in the game. Do the math, folks. Tomlin’s decision to go for 1 instead of 2 killed ANY chance of the Steelers coming back with that last TD. Bad judgment from a bad head coach.

The Weird – 

– Deep in their own territory, the Steelers somehow get called for a holding call on Mike Wallace on a run play. Really, refs? REALLY?

– Seeing a CB that the Steelers just promoted to the active roster this week playing outside one on one and getting burned for a TD pass in the 4th quarter. OK, Whatever! Fuck it.

– HORRIBLE holding call on Miller in the 4th quarter. Seriously, fuck these refs. What  a joke, NFL.

– Plaxico makes a terrific snag in traffic in the 1st quarter and is never seen from again the rest of the game.

– Phil Simms is a douchebag – After the refs finally call a penalty on the Chargers that actually benefits the Steelers, a CLEAR DPI penalty, he says some bullshit like  “That’s a bang bang play” No, dipshit, that’s a clear penalty.

– Once again Mike Tomlin’s stupidity shines through. Why the hell is Ben still in the game with just over 2 minutes left in the game and down by two scores? So he can get injured again? Beyond STUPID, especially considering how sieve-like the O-line has been all game long. I think Tomlin might actually be a saboteur, secretly working for another team.

This team has become frustratingly not fun to watch at this point. The pattern is clear – get up for 1 out of every 3 or 4 games, play and coach sloppy and dumb the rest of the time and hope that’s good enough, etc. The good news is the Bengals, who the Steelers will have to beat for the last playoff spot,  lost by 1 to the Cowboys today. The bad news is this team’s problems and shortcomings are never addressed or improved upon. It’s clear that it all starts with Tomlin,  the sad reality is Pittsburgh won’t be getting a new head coach in probably a very long time.

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