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83-Steelers-43
05-25-2007, 08:24 AM
Big Ben champions no-huddle schemes
Friday, May 25, 2007

By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Mario Lemieux might be Ben Roethlisberger's most famous ongoing golf partner these days, but no match may be more telling for the Steelers' quarterback than the one he had early this week with someone else.

Offensive coordinator Bruce Arians delivered a message to his quarterback that fit him to a tee while they were on the course.

"He said 'This is your offense; you tell me what you like and don't like,' " Roethlisberger related yesterday.

Not the bashful type, Roethlisberger spoke up. He wants to use the no-huddle offense more often. It was a big topic during training camp last year but never really materialized during the season. He believes it will in 2007.

"I like the way he wants to run the no-huddle," Roethlisberger said. "Last year, we talked and talked and talked about doing it and never did it. We did it in the preseason against coach [Mike] Tomlin and Minnesota -- we marched down the field and I was done for the rest of the game. It was great. And then we never saw it.

"I like that he wants to do that and I truly believe this year that we will do it."

They will do much more of it if Roethlisberger can run it the way he did in practice Wednesday.

"He just had one of the best practices I've ever seen him have, and it was the no-huddle package," Arians said then. "He ran it to perfection -- smooth, without a hitch, his completion percentage is way up right now.

"I'm real pleased. I couldn't ask for anything more. His snap count, he's doing a great job with it, we're not jumping offsides. Those little things can create big things and make you a better offense."

The Steelers' new offense won't look like Peyton Manning's, but a bigger dose of the no-huddle seems in order.

"I think we'll see it at least once a game," said Roethlisberger, who ran a steady diet of no-huddle at Miami University. "That was pretty much all we did was no-huddle. We called it Little Muddle where just the linemen huddled, and I signaled out to the receivers."

The Steelers will use the no-huddle in both the shotgun formation and with Roethlisberger under center.

"We have 60-some plays in that no-huddle package that I can call," Roethlisberger said. "That's another thing that we talked about; it's me calling the plays, but, if Bruce or someone sees something, they can tell me, 'Ben, we want to see this real quick in the no-huddle,' and I can call it from there. But I like that he has the confidence in me to do that."

Arians has taken the bridle off his fourth-year quarterback. Whereas the coaches protected Roethlisberger in his first few years, they are now allowing him to call audibles, call the pass protections and, as he hopes, run more no-huddle.

"I think the first year they tried to [protect me] a little more, but it didn't work as well because I was just kind of running around crazy," Roethlisberger said. "My second year I think they did a little bit, and it worked pretty well. I think they still tried to do it a lot last year as well, even though I thought I'd grown a lot. I think they did it mostly because of the injuries; I didn't think they needed to.

"This year, I think it's gotten to the point where B.A.'s putting a lot of trust in me and me in him."

Roethlisberger has eased into a leadership role over his first three years, but seems to be embracing it now. He has done little things, like taking teammates' questions about a recent story to a reporter. His more famous leadership moment came, as described by Peter King in Sports Illustrated last week, when he had dinner with Mike Tomlin shortly after he was named Steelers coach.

Roethlisberger told his new coach that a lot of players were unhappy that Russ Grimm or Ken Whisenhunt did not get his job, and that he would have to earn the players' respect and trust.

"It wasn't like one of those things where I stood up and told Tomlin you need to earn our respect," Roethlisberger said. "It wasn't anything like that. It was just that we have a lot of guys and a lot of differences going on and we have to earn each others' respect, and I think that we've done that."

Roethlisberger admits there was some resentment toward him in the Steelers' locker room early in his career because of the big money he made as a No. 1 draft choice, but he sees a big change.

"I think there was at first, but I think guys have learned that it's OK, we've grown into that," he said.

"As in everything, I always want to get better and I'll want to get better at being a leader -- not taking over, just being a presence in there for guys. I want guys to know that if they're in any kind of problem, if they need to come talk to someone, if they need a place to stay, a car, anything I can help them with I will be more than happy and willing to do that. I just want them to always know that and I think guys are starting to understand that more, especially the younger guys as they come up."

As for the even bigger money he stands to make on his next contract, something agent Ryan Tollner has broached with the Steelers, Roethlisberger wants no huddle on that one.

"I have enough to think about right now. Job security is always important, but there's a lot going on right now with other guys and so I'm not going to sit here and gripe and complain. I'm just going to let things happen that happen."

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/07145/788950-66.stm

Atlanta Dan
05-25-2007, 08:37 AM
I recall the Steelers did some no huddle in the 2005 regular season with some success.

I support putting more of a load on Ben this season in order to see if a bust the bank contract is justified, but I wish he would quit taking veiled shots at the old regime, as he does in this story by complaining the no huddle was not run after preseason in 2006.

Based on some of Ben's chuck & duck INTs last season where he did not have the ability or inclination to read the defense, it might be that Whiz & Cowher did not think Ben had the discipline or had put in time studying film to justify running the no huddle.

Time for the team in general and Ben in particular to look forward and quit looking back.

TackleMeBen
05-25-2007, 08:50 AM
I recall the Steelers did some no huddle in the 2005 regular season with some success.

I support putting more of a load on Ben this season in order to see if a bust the bank contract is justified, but I wish he would quit taking veiled shots at the old regime, as he does in this story by complaining the no huddle was not run after preseason in 2006.

Based on some of Ben's chuck & duck INTs last season where he did not have the ability or inclination to read the defense, it might be that Whiz & Cowher did not think Ben had the discipline or had put in time studying film to justify running the no huddle.

Time for the team in general and Ben in particular to look forward and quit looking back.

I agree. I think its time for the team to step up and show that they are a championship calibar team.

83-Steelers-43
05-25-2007, 08:50 AM
I'm used to hearing the shots taken at the old coaching staff. It's getting old but God forbid you criticize "Big" Ben, so I just shake my head and laugh when I hear the goofy comments. Apparently he feels the need to get it off his chest. Real mature.

Anyways, I'm all for Arian's cutting the kid loose and seeing what he can do. Like you Dan, I also want to see what the kid is capable of doing before we give away that big contract. I saw what he could do before he crashed his street bike in the middle of downtown Pittsburgh, but I also saw what he looked like after he crashed his bike. Loosen the cuffs and see what he can do.

tony hipchest
05-25-2007, 08:58 AM
balls to the wall. nobody is expecting much from the steelers outside of pittsburgh, and it can almost be cosidered the beginning of a rebuilding phase (although i dont think so). we dont have nothing to lose if we atleast attempt to come out and explode on offense.

i would like to think it was the philosophy holding ben back and not his inadequacies. there were times he was used as if he had the skill level and talent of kent graham or mike tomzcak. and as ego driven as cowher was, he couldve drafted peyton manning and still not hand over the reigns on offense, especially after the 2003 tommy gun debaucle.

alittlejazzbird
05-25-2007, 11:10 AM
balls to the wall. nobody is expecting much from the steelers outside of pittsburgh, and it can almost be cosidered the beginning of a rebuilding phase (although i dont think so). we dont have nothing to lose if we atleast attempt to come out and explode on offense.

I agree with Tony, the low expectations -- new coaches, new offensive/defensive philosophies, absence of Porter and Hartings, Faneca's unhappines -- will work in the Steelers' favor. Hopefully our opponents will buy into it hook, line and sinker.

Ben's assertion that the team never ran the no-huddle last season is not exactly accurate; they sometimes used it on two-minute drills and almost always had success with it (most notably in the Raiders fiasco, but it was too little too late). I distinctly remember thinking each time, why isn't this a constant part of the offense? Ben looked like a completely different passer on those drills; confident, accurate and in control.

One thing can be said for sure -- this year, it's on Ben. He gets to call the plays, the protections, everything. If the Steelers sink, there's no question where the responsibility will fall first. I think he's up to it, but time will tell.

TackleMeBen
05-25-2007, 11:38 AM
I agree with Tony, the low expectations -- new coaches, new offensive/defensive philosophies, absence of Porter and Hartings, Faneca's unhappines -- will work in the Steelers' favor. Hopefully our opponents will buy into it hook, line and sinker

isnt this the same thing that people thought when they made their run to the superbowl? i think this will definately work in our favor. so maybe we should keep faneca as unhappy as possible ..lol..


Ben's assertion that the team never ran the no-huddle last season is not exactly accurate; they sometimes used it on two-minute drills and almost always had success with it (most notably in the Raiders fiasco, but it was too little too late). I distinctly remember thinking each time, why isn't this a constant part of the offense? Ben looked like a completely different passer on those drills; confident, accurate and in control.


What about the theory that if he throws more than 15 times a game the steelers lose.?


One thing can be said for sure -- this year, it's on Ben. He gets to call the plays, the protections, everything. If the Steelers sink, there's no question where the responsibility will fall first. I think he's up to it, but time will tell.


You are right. It will be all on his shoulders this year if they fail or succeed.

OneForTheToe
05-25-2007, 11:58 AM
I'm used to hearing the shots taken at the old coaching staff. It's getting old but God forbid you criticize "Big" Ben, so I just shake my head and laugh when I hear the goofy comments. Apparently he feels the need to get it off his chest. Real mature.



All is fair in love and football, I guess. If Cowher has something to get off his chest about Ben, I guess he can do it via the studio. :smile:

ChronoCross
05-25-2007, 12:15 PM
If Ben does bounce back 100% and plays like he should, then the no huddle will work great. Ben sometimes when he was in the No Huddle kinda got in the zone and ran down the field on teams with no problems. Personally I cannot wait for this season to begin. Its going to be great.

onthebus36
05-25-2007, 12:24 PM
I'm sure last year was really frustrating for many inside the organization. Even from a fan level, I think it was apparent Cowher's heart wasn't in it a lot of the time.

That being said, I'm not sure Ben's comments are "shots." If he was making suggestions that could have been successful and they weren't used for no good reason, I'd be frustrated too. I respect Bill Cowher a lot and my hat is off for all he accomplished. At the same time, I sometimes wonder if more couldn't have been accomplished if he hadn't been so hard-headed at times.

If some players are criticizing the old regime, the other side of the coin is how many players sound excited and fired up about this season. As a fan, I have a growing optimism. I'm excited that we are staying with our roots but are showing a pre-season willingness to stretch things a bit. Running the no-huddle more often is not exactly a radical idea but I think it opens a lot of doors for us especially against weaker defenses like Cincy. I'm also excited that the players seem to be accepting Tomlin and buying into his ideas. Some of that could be just good press, but it sure seems like he's winning the team over.

Anyway, it's not even June yet but I like what I'm hearing. I also like that expectations for the Steelers are so low. I think we are a much better team than we are given credit for and I'm already tired of baseball and ready to get the game on!

ben2hines=6
05-25-2007, 01:09 PM
i think its time ben shuts up about the old coaching staff and works on getting his head straight for the upcoming season.....the time that the coaching staff did let him rocket the ball everywhere (bengals) he threw 4 picks......nohuddle seems like a good idea, lets just not abandon the run....GO WILLIE GO!!!!

TackleMeBen
05-25-2007, 01:12 PM
I think its worth a try. I mean every team knew what are scheme was... run run throw picked off..lol...

rbryan
05-25-2007, 02:16 PM
Problem is the "no huddle" goes against the Steelers basic philosophy of controlling time of possession. I feel it's one of the most underestimated stats in football. Only thing worse than a three and out is a three and out that takes 30 seconds.

Come the 4th quarter, 5 minutes TOP one way or the other is the difference between the defense still having gas in the tank or not.

I'm not saying I'm against it, but I would think it's something you mix in occasionally as opposed to running all the time.

steelwolf21
05-25-2007, 03:32 PM
Ben has, in limited does, run the two minute drill successfully. It's a copy-cat league and with the Pats and Colts running it so successfully the last few years its no wonder that its spreading like wild-fire. I think its a good idea, especially because you're combining it with a steellar (ha hah coudn't resist its a bad one) defense not one that shows up only occasionally like the Colts. The Pats have been able to run a possession oriented offense that utlilizes the no huddle really well and if Ben is up to the task I see no reason why it can't succeed in Pittsburgh.

83-Steelers-43
05-25-2007, 04:31 PM
All is fair in love and football, I guess. If Cowher has something to get off his chest about Ben, I guess he can do it via the studio. :smile:

"IF" is the key word. Personally, I don't see Cowher taking shots at Ben in the studio. He has a little more class and maturity than that. Plus, it seems like Cowher has moved on, something our "franchise" QB should start thinking about doing.

Or...

He can continue taking shots at Whisenhunt and Cowher (something he has been doing since Tomlin has been hired) every chance he get's while proving to me what I've heard and figured since XL ended but that's a whole other story.

WV-SteelerFan
05-25-2007, 04:39 PM
...I'm not sure Ben's comments are "shots."...

I would have to agree with that. Just because he's 'wondering why' about the past
doesn't mean he's taking a shot. God forbid you criticize "Big" Ben" , but, on the other hand,
God forbid you criticize Bill Cowher. It goes both ways.

rich4eagle
05-25-2007, 05:09 PM
Ben is a proven winner.............BIG TIME.........let's see how it plays out.............

NV STEELERS 723
05-25-2007, 05:13 PM
Am I reading this correct??? They are gonna let Ben call ALL his own plays??? or Just if he is running the no huddle??

paw-n-maul-u
05-25-2007, 07:47 PM
I think this is good. It's time for him to step up and be an elite QB. I thought last year was going to be his coming out party but due to a few minor setbacks, heh, it got put on hold.

Ben is going to do awesome this year. I wish we just had one more playmaking WR. Our receiver core would look pretty week if Ward or Holmes went down with an injury for an extended amount of time.

Galax Steeler
05-26-2007, 06:11 AM
I think ben will run it great and we will have a better scoring offense this year.

dnels14
05-26-2007, 06:44 AM
way to go BIG BEN AND BRUSE ARAINS . the no-huddle offense will give us plenty of options.. keeping defenses from subbin, backed up on there heels, and getting the multiple looks.. BY THE WAY GUYS... I FEEL LIKE IM A TEAMATE TRUE AND OUT. I aslo wants to give props to BRUSE ARAINS again- WE HAVE THE BEST TIGHTENDS IN THE LEAGUE-. SPREAD FORMATIONS - HAMMER THE RUNNING GAME AND HAMMER THE PASS.
I think we'll have oposing defense burnning quickly timeouts, loosing fucus..

PS. I LOVE OUR NEW COACH MIKE TOMLIN

and for mr. ALLEN FANECA- TAKE A CHILL PILL. LETS NOT FORGET YOUR MAKING OF 4.5M THIS SEASON- WE ALL KNOW THATS NOT PENNIES

drew102e
05-26-2007, 12:26 PM
ah gawd i am flashing back to the year of the 'tommy gun'

i hope it works, it would be fun to watch, and i love the steelers with a big lead, less ulcers that way :)

but frankly...i am not sure if ben is smart enough to run a no huddle...most of the time he just doesnt seem that intelligent to me, so calling plays, setting protections, audibles, i dunno if he can can handle it

*puts on flame-resistant vest*

fansince'76
05-26-2007, 12:31 PM
I remember folks making similar remarks regarding Bradshaw's intelligence. Walt Kiesling also cut Johnny Unitas from the roster back in the '50s because "he was too dumb to remember the plays." It's football, not quantum physics. Ben will be fine.

Black@Gold Forever32
05-26-2007, 12:50 PM
I'm all for giving Ben a larger role on offense. We have to find out if this guy is worth resigning to a monster deal and to see if he can really become a legit franchise QB....I'm glad Bruce Ariens isn't going to baby Big Ben like Cowher did. As for Ben taking shots at Bill Cowher...I could careless just as long as Ben can back it up on the field. Then it will prove Ben was right and Bill Cowher was just a stubborn SOB. Which Bill Cowher was alot of times in his career. Remember Steeler Nation Bill Cowher was a great 2-4 in AFC Title games which 5 of those games were in Pittsburgh. So yes I liked Bill Cowher overall but I will always have this thought in the back of my mind that we should have had at least 1 or 2 more Super Bowl wins in the Cowher era. True the players play the game and its their fault as well but coaching has to take part of the blame also....So I hope Ben throws for 30 TDs this year and sticks it to Coach Cowher...

TackleMeBen
05-26-2007, 01:37 PM
ah gawd i am flashing back to the year of the 'tommy gun'

i hope it works, it would be fun to watch, and i love the steelers with a big lead, less ulcers that way :)

but frankly...i am not sure if ben is smart enough to run a no huddle...most of the time he just doesnt seem that intelligent to me, so calling plays, setting protections, audibles, i dunno if he can can handle it

*puts on flame-resistant vest*


i guess we will see how intelligent he is this year and if he worth a new big contract. i hope he succeeds so that all the people who doubt him and stick it.

83-Steelers-43
05-26-2007, 04:09 PM
*puts on flame-resistant vest*

lol, I hear ya.

As for your other comments, I agree and I'm not exactly comfortable with the idea but we will never know until we take off "Big" Ben's training wheels. He's asking for it and since Cowher, Whisenhunt and the beer man apparently held him back during his 24 INT season let the kid have it and see what he cand do.

If it doesn't work out I'm sure he (among certain others in the Steeler "fan" base) have the excuses lined up for him with "Tomlin put too much responsibility on Ben." being the most common.

Eitherway, here's to hoping all goes well and he proves to the Steeler faithful that he is capable of taking the next step, at least on the football field. :cheers:

Black@Gold Forever32
05-26-2007, 05:27 PM
Ben actually threw 23 picks last year....But he started off throwing 0 TDs and 7 picks in his first three games....He finished the year throwing 18 TDs and 16 picks. Not great by no means but at least he was plus 2 over his last 15 games....Ben can say all he wants that his injuries didn't effect his play last year. But it was clear that the injuries did effect him physically and mentally....I give him credit for him sucking it up and playing through it all. I think that rough year made him a stronger player. When I see a pitcher in MLB missing 4-6 weeks with an appendix then it makes me think how Ben came back as quick as he did last year.

Now is Ben without his faults...Hell no he isn't and he has alot of work to do in his game to be a great NFL QB. But I expect he will show he is the real deal this year. I say 30 TD passes.lol

83-Steelers-43
05-26-2007, 05:31 PM
Ben actually threw 23 picks last year

lol, sorry. One off there. Lost count at one point.

But I expect he will show he is the real deal this year.

I hope so.

ShutDown24
05-26-2007, 08:07 PM
I don't like it really... I understand they are only considering using it once in a while... but once in a while to me is like once every other game fors a drive or two... not nearly as often as I think, most fans or the team is considering. I would much rather have pound it, then take deep shots when the other team is sold... either way I support everything the team does.

Elvis
05-26-2007, 08:13 PM
I just think that we need to stay with our smash mouth football that has won us a Super Bowl just 2 years ago. Our defense wins games and if we go to that spread it out offense with 4 WR's then we are not that kind of defensive team. The longer our offense is on the field the better our defense is, and that goes for every NFL team...
:tt02: