November 17, 2008

Take THAT To The Bank!

Jeff Reed sealed this one with a 32 yarder, once again proving that he's straight cash, homey...
Well, despite the fact that I think Hines Ward was just called for holding AGAIN, that win feels pretty good. Not in the sense that it instilled any confidence that our Offense has its shit together, but in the sense that we needed a win and we got one. The Ravens lost were embarrassed yesterday by the Giants, dropping them to 6-4. So 7-3 puts us ahead again.

And while I still don't know if I feel that great about our Offense, the numbers tell a different tale. Which is precisely why I never trust them. Check this out, Ben threw for 308 yards, Hines caught 11 balls for 124 yards, Willie rushed for 115 yards and yet, we didn't score ONE touchdown. Three field goals. That's all we could get. Of course, the Chargers aren't exactly the Bengals when it comes to Defense. But I have to believe that if we had our shit together, we could've won that game by a hell of a lot more than 1 point (removing the last second TD that was erroneously negated anyhow).

On the flip side, we got to enjoy another dominating Defensive performance from Silverback and friends. Philip Rivers only completed 15 passes for 159 yards and also managed to throw two picks. LT only gained 57 yards on 18 carries (a 3.2 yd avg.), though he did find his way three yards to the end zone in the 1st Quarter. And the Chargers leading receiver (after LT, who was the real top receiver) was Malcolm Floyd, two catches for 29 yards. Just another days work for the league's top Defensive unit, I'd say. Still feels fantastic, though.

So let's review this weeks "Things That Were Awesome," "Things That Were Not Awesome," and "Things That Almost Put Me On Suicide Watch."

Here goes...

Things That Were Awesome:
1. Troy's ridiculous pick! That's two on the season.
2. Forced fumble for a Safety, crucial interception, and a sack. That'll do, Silverback
3. Spaeth - 6 catches, 55 yds and as Pat pointed out, he learned how to fall forward
4. Doug Brien feels your pain, Nate Kaeding
5. Keisel sacking the shit out of Philip Rivers in the 2nd Quarter!
6. I called what the score should have been, and also Big Ben throwing for 300 yards
7. And yeah, Big Ben - 308 yards, Completion %age of 76, and 0 INTS!
8. Holding LT to just 57 yds
9. WILLIE PARKER! - 115 yards (and why not run HIM at the goal line?)
10. Hines - 11 for 124 yds

Things That Were Not Awesome:
1. Anthony Smith, fair catch interference. You sir, are fired!
2. Penalties that were not awesome, #s 5, 6, 7 & 8 - offensive holding on Spaeth, McHugh and Hines (twice!)
3. Philip Rivers. Ha, why not?
4. Mewelde Moore: 1 rush for -1 yard (prepare to be dropped like a bad habit in everyone's fantasy leagues)
5. Ike Taylor took a rough shot to the 'Nards

Things That Almost Put Me On Suicide Watch:
1. Oh, I know what'll work. That same play we unsuccessfully ran on the goal line last week. Brilliant!
2. 410 yds of Offense and 0 touchdowns
3. Paul Ernster's punt avg? 31 yards. Thank God we upgraded from Mitch Berger!
4. Anyone know who Jacques Cesaire was before yesterday? Well, anyways he sacked Ben twice...
5. Let me see if I understand this. Kicking a 51 yd Field Goal at Heinz is iffy in good conditions, but you want to try one in the snow? Naturally.

We've got a short week to prepare for the Bungles on Thursday. In case you've forgotten, they still suck, although I'm sure they're real psyched about tying the Eagles yesterday. Especially because Shayne Graham had a shot at making them 2-8 and missed! So 1-8-1 they are. Ryan Fitzpatrick is still their QB. Marvin Lewis is still their Coach. And Cincinnati Chili still sucks. Let's not get ahead of ourselves, but if we were going to play anyone on a short week, I think we can agree that the Bangles are a fine choice.

Now, I'm eager to hear your respective thoughts on this one. What ya'll got?


Get Fresh Designs said...

I didn't like the offensive not getting in the endzone, but it was better than 3 and outs.

I thought they would have play more of the Troy/LT commercial.

Noah said...

2 quick things (possibly more to come):

1. If it wasn't clear then, it is now, every officiating crew, all the time, is out to get us. I don't know why yet, but they just are. I can't get satisfied in a big gain w/o looking around for penalties first. E'en then, they throw late ones. I can't take it anymore. Normally the holding calls (esp. to lineman..err Colon) are warranted, but some of this stuff was ridiculous.

2. That's why yards gained are not viewed as a good stat anymore. You can gain more yards than Cassel threw for last week, but nothing matters unless you score, and that's been lacking. The D can't do everything. If our O was half as productive as our D, we'd be even more awesome than we are now.

domski43 said...

First off, great job overcoming a million penalties to only one called on San Diego.

Steelers finally put together a complete game. Offense/Defense/Special Teams looking the way we all know they should.

Welcome back Willie Parker. Moore filled in well, but no one moves the chains and has the burst of FWP.

Agree completely Cotter, Steelers have to put the ball in the end zone.

Gary Russell did a great job in short yardage situations.

Big Ben learned all his skills from Byron Leftwich.

notgomu said...

AMAZING INT by Polomalu. Ben played great, no touchdowns was the only bad thing. I agree there were way too many penalties, and I'm still waiting for my non-stomach destroying blowout of a game. What really got me at the end was the bullshit negation of polomalu's TD. What illegal forward pass?! Where was it? I didn't see it. And they even REVIEWED the freaking play! Who was watching the tape? That was like the cherry on top for the douche bag officiating of the day. Maybe I should just pick against the steelers in the non-money football pool.

Sheena Beaston said...

i had no idea who Jocksy Zare was before the game

and poor Jeff Reed is gonna shower himself with ladies at the loss of his perfect season

Vern said...

Yards gained are a good stat. Sure, sometimes this happens, but sometimes Tony Romo throws 5 INTs and fumbles and the Cowboys still beat the Bills. Fact is, yards generally correlate with points. Getting them is good.

Second, if they thought he could make the field goal, you kick it. Jeff Reed and Tomlin had a better grasp on the field conditions than we all did sitting on a couch somewhere.

Third, not only didn't Ben get picked, he didn't even come close to getting picked. When he missed, he missed good, and that is an awesome sign for a quarterback.

I'm going to stop counting points. Ben checked down too much, and fans were all over him. Yet, when he had time and held the ball, they yelled at him to throw it. BenCam views showed the WRs slow to get into their breaks, and the fact remains...if you have the time, you should take it.

Hines Ward needs to know he can't do that, as ticky-tacky as the calls were.

However, I'm still skeptical of the refereeing. I don't think they were out to get us, I think they just suck at refereeing.

Paul Ernster sucked. I think a good punter allows us to win this game by 10+, and I'll argue that all day. Really. I think a punter would have made that much difference yesterday.

People were clamoring for runs on 3rd and 1. Well, are you guys done yet? That's two weeks in a row that shows that maybe it's not the play calling, it just might be the line.

Willie ran like people always thought Bettis did, even though he actually didn't. At least not during his last couple years. Willie was insane. He was like Tom Cruise out there.

Stop hating on Ike Taylor because he didn't intercept that pass with one finger. He's f-ing awesome.

I hate some of the fans at the bar I go to to watch these games. They give me SARS.

Cotter said...

doug ~ Absolutely. I'll take the Offensive production. But moving towards the playoffs, if we can't put it in the end zone that ain't gonna be good.

noah ~ I don't know about the NFL's officials being out to get us. Though I could certainly see how you might get that impression. But I completely agree with you on the points production. Three points or no points ain't gonna cut it in the playoffs (assuming we make it that far).

domski ~ Tomlin seemed to imply that Gary Russell might now be THE short yardage back. Good or bad?

notgomu ~ Picking against the Steelers only works for Domski. But that's because he's really an Eagles fan, so...

sheena ~ It's better than some other things he might otherwise shower himself with, right?

Cotter said...

vern ~
1. Yes, generally. And they should. But they didn't, and that's what I was saying.

2. Maybe they do, maybe they don't. I know what you're saying, but 51 yards at Heinz Field is never an easy kick. No denying that.

Ben - agree.
Hines - also agree.
Refereeing - agree as well.
Ernster - agree.
Willie - agree.
Ike - agree.

SARS > Avian Flu

Vern said...

Also, did anybody else notice that Gary Russell's number is in italics on his jersey? The NFL might fine him for that.

tiny350Z said...

I heard after the game that Polamalu's touchdown should have counted, but since it wasn't a tie break situation, the score was to stay as-is. So much for me covering the spread (and probably the rest of the country that picked us to cover). =\
I thought the game went well. Again though, the touchdown was decided by favorable field position for the Chargers.
I love watching our defense come out to play like that.
While I'm still convinced that Moore did well while Parker was out, you truly got a sense of what we were missing when watching FWP out there. Glad he didn't hurt himself again, though (I hope).
And I too, this Russell did a great job on those third down runs. Me? I'm still clamoring for more runs on 3rd and 1...

random asshole said...

I think that we started Leftwich instead of Ben, we would have won by a lot more. If Ben can't get us a few touchdowns every week, he's obviously not worth the price. It's clearly time for a new QB, people; the Ben era is over.

Christy said...

I heard that the refs were still calling penalties on the Steelers this morning...

Noah said...

Wow, RandomA, wow.

As to tack on what I was saying earlier this morning:

Yes, that was obviously sarcastic plus a hint of overreaction, but if NFL is gonna keep its shred of its tarnished (IMO) intact, then the officiating has to be addressed at some level.

Agreed with the Ernster comment Vern, but I'll give him a mulligan this time because of the weather. (Although Scifres was killin us Field Po wise......)

I like Gary Russell as 3rd down back. I didn't mind him at all previous years either, it's that he's not as fast as FWP.

Speaking of FWP, if you are gonna run at 4th down, it should be to him, please.

I'd rather have Ben check down then suck at the long ranges.

D = ticket to playoffs.

domski43 said...

cotter - as long as russell produces in short yardage situations, give him the job. BTW I like the job he has been doing returning the ball
(russell > davenport)

I would like to see some situaions where Moore and Parker are on the field at the same time.

Why do the Steelers continue to do the fake wr screen pass or wide receiver reverse and end up handing the ball off? No one is fooled by this because Ben is terrible at pump faking, and these plays do not scare the defense.

Sorry for the bitching on a Monday after a win, but offensive production is still a giant issue for the Steelers. Lets face the facts, the Chargers defense sucks. 11 points is embarassing, but I guess tieing to the Bengals is more embarassing.

domski43 said...

Oh yeah, I like the run call on 3rd and 1 b/c I'm tired of going to shotgun formation on 3rd and shorts. Have Ben stay under center, so there is a threat of both a run and a pass. Make the defense think a little bit rather than sell out either way.

matt said...

"...offensive production is still a giant issue for the Steelers. Lets face the facts, the Chargers defense sucks. 11 points is embarassing...:

Domski - I couldn't agree more

It was encouraging however to see them move the ball down the field the last drive...minus the holding call, which broke our backs all day long.

domski43 said...

matt - i loved the final drive too, but it pisses me off that they wait till the last drive to get a sense of urgency to produce points. if they used that same urgency on every drive they would be a much more effective offense, and would save me a lot of gray hairs. What happened to put the game away early and sit on the ball?

oh yeah, 100 plus penalty yards hurt a lot.