Surging Steelers Pass Latest Test Against Giants

 

Considering Opponent, Steelers D delivers best performance of season The best thing for the Steelers in turning a four game losing streak that had their season on a downhill spiral to now a three game winning streak, has been the schedule and some “Luck”. What playing the Cleveland Browns in week 11 and the Indianapolis Colts last week without Andrew Luck was let this defense reset when they needed it the most. Rookies and young players trending up came out of those two games with a new brand of confidence and suddenly the Steelers defense is looking like the unit from Weeks 1, 2, 4 & 5 where the Steelers allowed 16 points or less in all four games to start the season 4-1. While the Giants came in with the 22nd ranked offense in the NFL, this was a critical test with Eli Manning at QB. Pittsburgh rose toRead More »

Monday’s TIOPS Inside Buzz Report

 

TIOPS Inside Buzz *Rumblings, Musings, Opinions* 1. More Leadership needed from Wideouts? Antonio Brown’s work ethic outside of game days to fine his craft is rarely matched by others. It’s what has made him into one of the NFL’s best receivers and saw him become the fastest receiver in NFL history to 600 receptions, doing it Sunday in his 96th career game. But is Brown doing a good enough job in leading by example for an inexperienced wide receiver group? Emerging is more and more talk in Steelers circles that Brown has been a bad apple at times and a bad influence on Sammie Coates, Eli Rodgers in critical areas such as attention to details and these inexperienced receivers learning to play the position the right away. While Brown looks to the media and fan base as someone whose top priority is his stats, that’s how he’s also looked atRead More »

Steelers – Browns Fallout: Everything outside of the “W” in the win column comes with an Asterisk

 

Steelers 24 – Browns 9 The good for the Steelers is they care of business against a dismal football team in the Cleveland Browns to improve to 5-5 on the season. They also got some needed help on the scoreboard as the Ravens (5-5) lost to Dallas and the Bengals (3-6-1) season continues to slip away with a bad home loss to the Bills (5-5). The Ravens and Steelers are now tied in the division with a 5-5 record. Big Stats Day for Steelers D The defense was able to pad a lot of stats. Entering the game with 13 sacks on the season, Pittsburgh had 8 sacks from six different players. Stephon Tuitt led the way with 2.5 sacks, Arthur Moats 1.5 sacks, while James Harrison, Javon Hargrave, Lawrence Timmons, Ryan Shazier each had one sack. Pittsburgh sacked Browns QB’s Cody Kessler and Josh McCown each four times, oneRead More »

Is the “Steelers Way” in constructing a team failing to maximize Ben Roethlisberger’s window for another title?

 

Steelers Fallout from loss to Cowboys So when do the Mike McCarthy, a Rooney family favorite, to Pittsburgh rumors start heating up? Kidding aside, the Pittsburgh Steelers season is slipping away after a 35-30 loss to the Dallas Cowboys that has the Steelers record now sitting at 4-5. However, as was the case following last week’s loss, the good news remains that 9-7, maybe even 8-8 could win the division. Certainly still plausible with Pittsburgh’s schedule and division. Bad news is that this is a football team at a cross-roads and not a great team in any phase from on the field to being coached. Remember this was supposed to be a Super Contender that by the way started the season 4-1? For all of the pub this offense gets, and yes they put up 30 points today, it’s largely an inconsistent group that doesn’t play well enough on theRead More »

Steelers – Ravens Fallout: On QB Decision & another 9-7, 8-8 Tomlin coached team?

 

Did Steelers fail themselves with QB Decision? The burning question coming out of the Steelers 21-14 loss to the Baltimore Ravens is did the Steelers make a mistake starting Ben Roethlisberger. Never thought I’d see the day where there’s an argument to be made that Landry Jones would have given the Steelers a better chance. The takeaway out of this one is that if your quarterback can’t follow through on his throws due to an injured knee, he shouldn’t be playing even if medically cleared, which was the case for Ben Roethlisberger on almost every throw until the final couple drives in the fourth quarter. The tape did the explaining. Roethlisberger was clearly unable to set his feet to follow through on throws in what an abysmal afternoon offensively for 12 of 15 drives. He also looked like a quarterback for much of the game who was missing his readsRead More »

Monday Buzz Column: Steelers Near perfect night against favorable matchup

 

Really Good Coaching on display in near perfect performance Okay, so which game was the fluke? Was it the game that left a stink last week that is still stinking up Philadelphia or was it the ridiculously easy blowout of the Chiefs Sunday night? As boring as the answer may be, both games were flukes. One fourth of the way into the season, the Steelers aren’t as bad as they looked against the Eagles and they’re not as good as they looked against the Chiefs. All you need to know is that, in one week’s time, they went from their worst blowout loss since 1989, which was two coaches ago, to their best first quarter since Art Rooney founded the team in 1933. That’s about as drastic a swing as you’re going to get from a pro football team. You know what else it is? Really good coaching. Not justRead More »

Debacle in Philly: Steelers exposed or just one of those games?

 

Steelers woes in Philly a long-term concern or just one of those games? The debacle in Philadelphia. Did the Steelers get exposed or was this just one those games a team will have? That’s the million dollar question coming out of the Steelers 34-3 loss. From the Offense, to the Defense, Special Teams, to Coaching, the Steelers graded out with an ‘F’ performance. Offense If the Eagles did anything for future Steeler opponents, it put out tape of a blueprint on how to defend the Steelers. Philadelphia’s front four dominated the Steelers at the line of scrimmage. Pittsburgh believes it has the best offensive line in football on the right side and the Eagles got the upper hand in a big way. Fletcher Cox had two sacks against David DeCastro and Marcus Gilbert who the Steelers believe has evolved into the best right tackle in football, allowed his first sackRead More »

Monday Buzz Column: A tale of two coaches; Nova overhyped locally; Crosby World Best

 

  Monday Buzz Column “We play not to lose.” That’s not what Marvin Lewis said after his Bengals lost to the Steelers on Sunday but he could have. Remember what Mike Tomlin  said when he was asked about going for it successfully on fourth down twice against the Redskins, including a long touchdown pass? He said, “We play to win.” After a pass interference penalty, the Bengals were set up with a first and goal at the one-yard line with 2:58 left in the third quarter. The Steelers were leading 17-6. After losing a yard on a run up the middle, Andy Dalton’s pass to C.J. Uzomah was ruled incomplete when he landed out of bounds in the back of the end zone. Despite the replay showing Uzomah’s foot and a knee landing in bounds, Lewis, for some reason, decided not to throw the challenge flag. On third and goalRead More »

Steelers “D” continues to show key signs of growth in win over Bengals

 

Steelers Grind Out win vs Bengals Through the first two games of the season, the Pittsburgh Steelers on defense have found an identity. Stuff the run and bend but don’t break against the pass. Bengals QB Andy Dalton threw for 366 yards as the Bengals racked up 412 total yards but the Steelers kept the Bengals offense out of sync for much of the afternoon. Limiting the Bengals to 46 rushing yards forced Dalton to throw 54 times. The Steelers excelled again with their zone defense and were dominant in getting stops on third down as the Bengals went 4-16 on third down. For the second straight week, the Steelers performance on D had a lot to do with their scheme as Pittsburgh out-game planned Cincinnati. Ryan Shazier who was hobbled throughout the week with a knee injury, was a force in the middle of the field with a team-highRead More »

Tuesday Buzz Column: Players feeding off Mike Tomlin’s aggressive demeanor

 

Tuesday Buzz Column “We play to win.” That was Mike Tomlin’s answer to a question about the thinking behind having Ben Roethlisberger throw a 26-yard pass into the end zone on fourth and one in the first quarter Monday Night against the Redskins. Antonio Brown, of course, made the catch and the Steelers had a 7-6 lead on the Redskins. They completed a pass for a first down on fourth down prior to their second touchdown. Meanwhile, the Redskins’ coach, Jay Gruden was punting from the Steelers’ 41 and kicking field goals. That’s called playing not to lose. Mike Tomlin may not be the best game manager among NFL coaches but you have to give him credit for being aggressive. Nobody goes for two points as often as he does and he has the sideline demeanor of a guy who looks like he wants to be the one who willRead More »