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View Full Version : Response to the "no worries about Ben" threads


Mosca
09-26-2006, 10:08 AM
I'm concerned. Follow me through on this. The guy hasn't had a good game since the AFC championship game.

I'm concerned that he's a head case, that's what concerns me.

For his rookie year, he was basically doing what he was told, with no responsibility other than performing physically; hand off to this guy, make the reads and throw to that guy. No big deal, rely on the god-given talent. Hey, if a rookie screws up, that's expected; he's a rookie, after all. But, when playoff time came, and the pressure was on, his performance tanked. He (and we) chalked it up to exhaustion.

Last year, he played well. During the stretch run, and the playoff run, there was no pressure because no one expected anything; the Steelers were the underdogs all the way through, if they lost it was what was expected. But, then the Super Bowl came up, and the pressure was on, and the eyes of fans everywhere were on him, and... his performance tanked.

Now this year, the pressure's on. He's BIG BEN, the quarterback of the Super Bowl Champions, and he's expected to get better. Forget about the accident and the appendix. In the NFL, if you're ready to play, you play. If you're physically compromised, you adapt your game to what you can do. Ben can certainly hit guys on short crossing patterns, guys coming out of the backfield, flares, screen passes... can't he? By the evidence of the last two games, no.

I hate to ask it... but could it be that our guy can't handle the expectation of success? I've always believed that he's not all that complicated emotionally. But what I don't see on the sidelines is the same guy I saw the first two years; laughing, joking, confident, one step ahead of everyone else. I see a guy who is worried and hesitant, and who is thinking a little bit behind everyone else. The game isn't an open book to him like it was before.

It's crunch time for this guy. This is where he gets to decide if he's going to be with Carson Palmer and Tom Brady, or with Mark Johnson and Mark Brunell. Will he be able to lead his team to victory one-handed when he has to? Only if his team believe that he can, is my answer. A couple more games like those and that might not come true.


Tom

Da Question
09-26-2006, 10:26 AM
I agree he hasnt made many plays, but he has made plays when they counted. As bad as he played last week, he still gave us a chance for OT by driving us down the field, in the superbowl he made that strike to hines after the huge scramble to set up a score. The main thing is he is still learning, most rookies will not get to start till their 3rd 4th season much less win a superbowl. Plus he hasnt had a qb mentor. Working behind someone like tommy maddox your gonna have some flaws.

floodcitygirl
09-26-2006, 10:33 AM
I was listening to a sports talk show as I left Pittsburgh yesterday. I'm sorry that I don't remember the name of the guy. His take was that this off week is not good for Ben at all. He believes that physically, he's fine or he would not be able to move around and out of the pocket as easily as he is. He believes his problem is mental and rust....just not enough play time. Practice can't duplicate it. While this break may be good for others on the team....Troy....Hines, etc., it's not what Ben needs right now at all. Those were his thoughts. Makes sense to me. (I'm sure some of you locals know who the guy is...regular talkshow AM). Thoughts?

tony hipchest
09-26-2006, 10:41 AM
while there is reason to worry, we have become spoiled as fans. ben screwed up with 3 int's. but he did the exact same thing last year against the bengals. his int's and a special teams breakdown cost us THAT game.

keep in mind out of about 30 regular season games only those 2 against the bengals has he EVER thrown for more than 2 int's. out of the same amount of games ben finally threw his FIRST red zone interception. sure it sucked and denied a 14-0 score, but its not like ben has a habit of doing this.

i think ben will handle the pressure of success fine. as for his sideline mannerisms and huddle presence, he probably is a little bummed he didnt play much and had 2 bad games when he did play. he is now the leader. the last 2 years jerome was always there to pump him up and get him fired up. maybe a little of that is missing. now ben is that guy. its probably a little adjustment for him taking over that leadership role.

there have been about 4-6 drives in the past 2 games where ben looked dead on accurate, was seeing the field and making the proper plays, so he still has it. its just a matter of being a little more consistant. unfortunately this 2 week layoff isnt really gonna help that. ben has always been a slow starter after extended time off bye weeks are not good for him:

vs the jets his 1st year
last year in training camp and pre season
after his knee surgery last year
after the afc champ game in denver
and then this year

Atlanta Dan
09-26-2006, 11:26 AM
Saying he succeeds when there is no pressure and screws up when there is pressure and then defining all successful games as "no pressure games" and all poor games as "pressure" games leads to a self-fulfilling analysis.

Given his poor showing in the 2004 playoffs, I find it hard to define 3 road playoff games as no pressure situations. Being 10 points down to Cincy twice in a road playoff game and leading the comeback (especially with a scramble for a first down early in the game) was pressure, as was having the coaching staff put it on your back to come out throwing in the Indy win and take a rabid Denver crowd out of the game.

No matter how good the QB, if you have lousy receivers your performance is going to suffer - Tom Brady is the money QB of this era but he did not look like it Sunday night - I do not believe that is due to a drop-off in Brady's skills or commitment. Right now, with Hines banged up while Wilson and Washington drop easy catches it is hard to argue the Steelers receivers are in the top half of the league.

I agree Ben is having a rocky start and that he has had several awful big games (2004 playoffs, SB XL), but I am not ready to call him a head case who folds under pressure while he quite possibly is nowhere near 100% - I will save the slur of cannot bring it in pressure games for Saint Peyton.

He can watch film this week, but I think a week's rest will be good for Ben, Hines, and Troy.

Atlanta Dan
09-26-2006, 11:31 AM
I'm concerned. Follow me through on this. The guy hasn't had a good game since the AFC championship game.

I'm concerned that he's a head case, that's what concerns me.

For his rookie year, he was basically doing what he was told, with no responsibility other than performing physically; hand off to this guy, make the reads and throw to that guy. No big deal, rely on the god-given talent. Hey, if a rookie screws up, that's expected; he's a rookie, after all. But, when playoff time came, and the pressure was on, his performance tanked. He (and we) chalked it up to exhaustion.

Last year, he played well. During the stretch run, and the playoff run, there was no pressure because no one expected anything; the Steelers were the underdogs all the way through, if they lost it was what was expected. But, then the Super Bowl came up, and the pressure was on, and the eyes of fans everywhere were on him, and... his performance tanked.

Now this year, the pressure's on. He's BIG BEN, the quarterback of the Super Bowl Champions, and he's expected to get better. Forget about the accident and the appendix. In the NFL, if you're ready to play, you play. If you're physically compromised, you adapt your game to what you can do. Ben can certainly hit guys on short crossing patterns, guys coming out of the backfield, flares, screen passes... can't he? By the evidence of the last two games, no.

I hate to ask it... but could it be that our guy can't handle the expectation of success? I've always believed that he's not all that complicated emotionally. But what I don't see on the sidelines is the same guy I saw the first two years; laughing, joking, confident, one step ahead of everyone else. I see a guy who is worried and hesitant, and who is thinking a little bit behind everyone else. The game isn't an open book to him like it was before.

It's crunch time for this guy. This is where he gets to decide if he's going to be with Carson Palmer and Tom Brady, or with Mark Johnson and Mark Brunell. Will he be able to lead his team to victory one-handed when he has to? Only if his team believe that he can, is my answer. A couple more games like those and that might not come true.


Tom


I know he looks like a QB and has great stats (although not on Sunday when he often looked rattled) but can we wait until he wins something before we canonize Carson Palmer?

Hawk Believer
09-26-2006, 11:41 AM
One thought that comes to my mind on reading this thread is that Ben will have a very unique sequence to his learning process in the NFL. What I mean by that is, who else starts off as a QB in the league with 2 straight years of the highest level of success? You can't expect that will be sustained throughout his carreer. So instead of starting off with a very humbling beat down like most QBs do before tasting success, he is going to someday (maybe now?) deal with the difficult times after some success. Maybe that will make it harder to deal with when the day comes. Or maybe it will be easier to deal with because he won't have the doubt of wondering if he is capable of performing at a high level. Anyway, thats what thought popped into my head on reading this...

Atlanta Dan
09-26-2006, 12:05 PM
One thought that comes to my mind on reading this thread is that Ben will have a very unique sequence to his learning process in the NFL. What I mean by that is, who else starts off as a QB in the league with 2 straight years of the highest level of success?

Dan Marino is the closest parallel I can think of - Marino replaced the starting QB for the defendiang AFC champs his rookie year and broke all passing records while going to teh SB his second season.

God forbid Ben has that career track insofar as team (not individual stats) success is concerned - it was all downhill after 1985 for Marino & the Dolphins.

Mosca
09-26-2006, 12:37 PM
Good points all. I'm concerned, and that's an emotional state, not a logical one. I know that the questions can't be answered by discussion; they can only play out through the season and through Roethlisberger's career. All I can do is share my concern and why I have it. Let's see what happens. I'm not pessimistic by nature, and if it weren't for the example of Steve Blass I would consider it inconceivable that a world class athlete could fall apart. So I'm probably concerned over nothing. I still don't see Ben as all that complicated a guy.

But I WOULD like to know that he's become better at being prepared intellectually for the games, studying film and tendencies and defenses. Because you know that the best defensive players are studying him.

Tom

tony hipchest
09-26-2006, 12:42 PM
it sounds like he'll be fine mosca, and put in the time and effort in the filmroom:

http://news.steelers.com/article/69531/

You asked for more of a role in the offense after last year. By asking for that, and receiving it, does that put more pressure on you?



I put the pressure on myself to produce, and right now I'm not doing that, so I'm going to continue to put more pressure on myself to play better. I need to find that happy medium, without trying to do too much. I have to come out and be smart, and make better plays. A couple of plays tonight were negatives on our part. The interceptions – on one, I stepped on Marvel (Smith's) foot, and I had Cedrick (Wilson) wide open, and unfortunately I couldn't get it there.



Was that the interception over the deep middle?



Yes, I had great protection, the line gave me a lot of time, the safety drove on Hines (Ward), and I saw Cedrick (Wilson) going deep. I let it go, and when I did I stepped on Marvel (Smith's) foot.



In regards to your rehab, does this bye come at a bad time?



It's kind of a double-edged sword. It's good to have the bye to rest up, and to look at the things that I need to improve on, but I'm starting to get back into it now and it'd be nice to keep going. We'll see how we respond out of it.

sumo
09-26-2006, 12:54 PM
I'm concerned. Follow me through on this. The guy hasn't had a good game since the AFC championship game.

I'm concerned that he's a head case, that's what concerns me.

For his rookie year, he was basically doing what he was told, with no responsibility other than performing physically; hand off to this guy, make the reads and throw to that guy. No big deal, rely on the god-given talent. Hey, if a rookie screws up, that's expected; he's a rookie, after all. But, when playoff time came, and the pressure was on, his performance tanked. He (and we) chalked it up to exhaustion.

Last year, he played well. During the stretch run, and the playoff run, there was no pressure because no one expected anything; the Steelers were the underdogs all the way through, if they lost it was what was expected. But, then the Super Bowl came up, and the pressure was on, and the eyes of fans everywhere were on him, and... his performance tanked.

Now this year, the pressure's on. He's BIG BEN, the quarterback of the Super Bowl Champions, and he's expected to get better. Forget about the accident and the appendix. In the NFL, if you're ready to play, you play. If you're physically compromised, you adapt your game to what you can do. Ben can certainly hit guys on short crossing patterns, guys coming out of the backfield, flares, screen passes... can't he? By the evidence of the last two games, no.

I hate to ask it... but could it be that our guy can't handle the expectation of success? I've always believed that he's not all that complicated emotionally. But what I don't see on the sidelines is the same guy I saw the first two years; laughing, joking, confident, one step ahead of everyone else. I see a guy who is worried and hesitant, and who is thinking a little bit behind everyone else. The game isn't an open book to him like it was before.

It's crunch time for this guy. This is where he gets to decide if he's going to be with Carson Palmer and Tom Brady, or with Mark Johnson and Mark Brunell. Will he be able to lead his team to victory one-handed when he has to? Only if his team believe that he can, is my answer. A couple more games like those and that might not come true.


Tom

Ben is the Man!!!! -- Run oriented teams will just about always struggle when they have to come from behind and score more than once to win a game -- bad turnovers killed Pittsburgh this past week not Ben -- Decent running attack (in place) + Good Defense (in place) + no turnovers at crucial times and places = Success for Ben and the Steelers

HometownGal
09-26-2006, 12:57 PM
The way I look at it is this. Every NFL QB, including past, present and future HOF'ers, has a series of bad games or an "off" year. It happens and it is up to him - in this case Ben - to get his head on straight and back on track. No one else can do it for him. Ben was determined enough to get into playing form physically but the mental/emotional after-effects of all this guy has been through in a very short period of time may take just a little longer, which is certainly understandable. I believe this bye week can only benefit Ben and the team as a whole in the long run. I have a lot of faith in Ben and his ability to regain his self-confidence and return to his prior form as a QB who can play a major role in leading his team back to where it belongs - on top of the AFC North.

Haiku_Dirtt
09-26-2006, 02:47 PM
He's a kid who about 100 days ago went through a near-death experience. He followed that up by donating his appendix to the local medical waste incinerator.

He may think he was hitting his stride and the bye week is not good. But on the final drive against the Bengals he moved the ball nicely against a defense that was happy to give up plays underneath. When Ben was forced he threw the pic.

IMHO the bye week couldn't have come at a better time. Back to the basics. Starting 1-4 is not very healthy obstacle to hurdle.

sculleyd
09-26-2006, 05:17 PM
Remember, too, that this year our WRs have been Hines Ward (hamstring), Cedric Wilson, Nate Washington, and Santonio Holmes.

While I believe this group may someday be very good, right now it's nowhere near as good as Hines Ward (healthy), Antwaan Randle El, Cedric Wilson, and Quincy Morgan.

I'd like Ben to make better decisions and take the underneath stuff more when it's there, but you can't blame it all on him right now.

augustashark
09-27-2006, 12:20 AM
I know it won't happen, but I would love to see Cowher go full speed in the next few practices. What better way to help Ben shake "rust" then to go full speed against our D. The only thing wrong with this is that we can not afford someone to get injured while on a bye week. I do expect Cowher to have some pretty intense 7 on 7 drills this week and next. Ben must get his timing down with our WR'S. It gives me hope and bothers me that when we got down and went to the hurry up that Ben started to pick up his game. I also think that some of the routes that WR'S are running right now are not helping either. Ben Has always been better at throwing the deep outs and the 15yrd come backs, skinny posts and slants. I will wait with great anticipation for the SD game.

hardwork
09-27-2006, 04:00 AM
Roethlisberger is going to throw interceptions. I just think that's the way he is. Roethlisberger is going to win also because I just think that's the way he is.

stillers4me
09-27-2006, 05:14 AM
It's going to be a long two weeks.