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Thread: An entertaining (sorta) article out of Pittsburgh

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    Default An entertaining (sorta) article out of Pittsburgh

    I always get a kick out of the Pittsburgh media when the Steelers lose a game. For those of you that don't understand why some of us have complained about the for years, read this game recap.

    I've bolded certain sections that would clearly never appear in an IndyStar article about the home team.


    http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/05290/589902.stm

    Steelers' defense, special teams can't bail out awful offense

    Monday, October 17, 2005
    By Gerry Dulac, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette












    Peter Diana, Post-Gazette
    Lineman Kendall Simmons gives Tommy Maddox a lift after the quarterback was sacked for a 7-yard loss in the first quarter.
    Click photo for larger image.


    How bad was the Steelers' offense?
    They got a 72-yard punt return for a touchdown from Antwaan Randle El in the second quarter and a 74-yard kick return from Quincy Morgan to start overtime and still lost to the Jacksonville Jaguars.

    They got a great play from cornerback Ike Taylor to break up a pass for Jaguars' wide receiver Jimmy Smith in the end zone with 26 seconds remaining. And another from rookie cornerback Bryant McFadden seven seconds later when he intercepted a pass for Reggie Williams in the end zone, preventing the Jaguars from attempting the winning field goal and calling into question yet another choice in a series of curious decisions by Jaguars coach Jack Del Rio.

    And still, when they had opportunities to defeat the Jaguars, when they had a chance to overcome four turnovers by Tommy Maddox, the Steelers couldn't escape their own ineptitude. And they couldn't escape the harsh reality of a 23-17 loss to the Jaguars, either, a defeat that smelled a lot like a painful home loss to the Houston Texans in 2002.

    "We treat every game like we got to win it one way or another," safety Chris Hope said. "There have been times when the offense bailed us out. There have been times when we didn't play our best and the offense played their best."

    This wasn't one of them.

    The Steelers allowed Jacksonville 246 yards offense, held them to just 9 yards rushing in the second half and came up with two big goal-line plays.










    Matt Freed, Post-Gazette
    After a slow start, the Steelers defense held Jaguars running back Greg Jones to 77 yards. Larry Foote and Mike Logan stopped Jones for no gain on first and goal near the end of the second quarter.
    Click photo for larger image.


    After running back Greg Jones carried five times for 50 yards on the second possession of the game, he finished with only 77 yards on 18 carries, allowing the Steelers to extend their streak of not allowing a 100-yard rusher to 17 games.

    And it still wasn't enough.
    That's because the Steelers' offensive numbers were even more anemic, right down to Maddox's four turnovers -- two in overtime -- and the ability to make third-down conversions (1 of 12) look like Shaquille O'Neal's free-throw shooting statistics.

    "We didn't create enough ball opportunities for our defense," inside linebacker James Farrior said. "We took that attitude. We knew our offense was having a hard time moving the ball. But we didn't do that."

    It might not have mattered. Without Ben Roethlisberger and Hines Ward, the Steelers turned the ball over four times -- twice as many turnovers as they had in the first four games.

    The most egregious error, of course, was the one that ended the game -- Maddox's pass for Morgan that was intercepted by cornerback Rashead Mathis and returned 41 yards for a touchdown.

    "In a game like this, you keep going out there fighting and waiting for a break to happen," said defensive end Aaron Smith. "Unfortunately, they made more plays than we did. Everyone wants to make a play, but you got to play your responsibilities."

    "It was a really slow-paced game," safety Troy Polamalu said. "You have to be really on your keys. All it takes is one play to separate and score."
    Polamalu was talking about the defense, but he could have been referring to the Steelers' offense, especially after Maddox's interceptions resulted in two of the three Jaguars touchdowns.

    Polamalu, a Pro Bowl safety, was mostly responsible for the other.
    He was beaten in single coverage on the Jaguars' longest play of the day -- a 41-yard pass to Williams to the Steelers' 33 -- then added to the net gain when he tackled Williams out of bounds along the Jaguars' bench and was assessed a 15-yard penalty. When the play was over, the Jaguars had accumulated 56 yards and had a first down at the Steelers' 18.

    "I just lost place of where I was on the field," Polamalu said. "I thought he was in bounds. The ref told me he stepped out of bounds. But if he's trying to progress forward, it's natural for me to push him backwards. I think that's probably a judgement call. We just got to live with it."
    Polamalu wasn't finished. Three play later, when Leftwich threw a 10-yard touchdown to rookie Matt Jones in the back of the end zone, Polamalu was hit with another 15-yard penalty for a late hit on Leftwich -- a play that could draw a fine from the NFL because Polamalu appeared to leave his feet when delivering the blow.

    It was the third personal foul in two games for Polamalu, who was especially active and uncharacteristically emotional in the victory Monday night in San Diego.

    "Honestly, I'd have to look at film to really know [if I hit him late]," Polamalu said. "You just got to live with the ref's call. I can't change that."

    "Teams come in here and try to do all kinds of things to get under our skin," Hope said. "And when we try to match it, [the officials] look at us as the bad boys, like we're trying to intimidate everyone."

    Even Smith appeared to commit a costly penalty with 1:55 remaining in regulation when he was called for roughing the passer after Leftwich threw an incompletion on third-and-16 from the Jacksonville 41. The penalty gave the Jaguars a first down at the Steelers' 44.

    But instead of playing for a field goal to win the game, the Jaguars tried a pass into the end zone on third down from the Steelers' 32, the play on which McFadden intercepted a pass.

    "He did a nice acting job," Smith said. "I was just running by him, I put my arm on his shoulder and he just fell down."

    Just like the Steelers' offense.





    (Gerry Dulac can be reached at gdulac@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1466.)
    Why do the things that we treasure most, slip away in time
    Till to the music we grow deaf, to God's beauty blind
    Why do the things that connect us slowly pull us apart?
    Till we fall away in our own darkness, a stranger to our own hearts
    And life itself, rushing over me
    Life itself, the wind in black elms,
    Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you


  2. #2

    Default Re: An entertaining (sorta) article out of Pittsburgh

    Hey, Jay! Thanks for another article. That Jags offensive line did a number on us; didn't think any d-lines in the league had it in them! But if I lay blame on anyone, it's Tommy Boy. The guy is "supposed" to be a reliable veteran but comes out and nearly throws the ball away every time he steps back to throw. I won't lie; I had a very strong feeling that we would lose the game sooner or later on one of his interceptions...I was just waiting for it. The defense wasn't its normal self either, but Tommy needed to put some zip on the ball; he was just floating 'em out there for everyone to snatch at. Did you see those throws into triple and quadruple coverage???

  3. #3
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    Default Re: An entertaining (sorta) article out of Pittsburgh

    I don't know how he missed some of those defenders. He might not have been 100% because of the calf injury but his brain couldn't have been more than 0.5% ready for that game.

    I also somewhat blame "your boy" Bettis, he was a no-show as well. With no Big Ben and no Hines Ward, a strong performance from Jerome was a requirement.
    Why do the things that we treasure most, slip away in time
    Till to the music we grow deaf, to God's beauty blind
    Why do the things that connect us slowly pull us apart?
    Till we fall away in our own darkness, a stranger to our own hearts
    And life itself, rushing over me
    Life itself, the wind in black elms,
    Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you


  4. #4

    Default Re: An entertaining (sorta) article out of Pittsburgh

    I agree. But it's not like Coach Cowher put him in all that much anyway. Jerome doesn't get to decide when he plays methinks...But whenever they put him in, it was an obvious running play, which tipped off the Jags, making it very easy to stop him. He only has so many moves. The offensive line just got outplayed. Jerome relies heavily on that; the Bus can't go very far without his cowcatchers.

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