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SteelDogFan
10-11-2007, 03:39 PM
This article is from Oct. 11, 2007 The Sports Xchange posted on CBSSportsline

The best Steelers defense ever?

Pittsburgh has fielded some great defenses through the years, including the Steel Curtain of the 1970s and Blitzburgh of the mid-1990s. But none of those was able to accomplish what the 2007 version has done through five games.

The Steelers have yielded only 47 points, the fewest any Pittsburgh team has allowed in the first five games in the past 70 years. They have to go all the way back to 1937, when scoring did not occur nearly as often, to find a Steelers team that allowed fewer -- 38 in the first five games that season.

In addition, a punt was returned for a touchdown that's included in those 47 points.

No one's ready to compare them to the Steel Curtain defense that produced four Pro Football Hall of Famers, but the current Steelers defense is strong in every area. It even recorded its first shutout in Heinz Field last Sunday without its two Pro Bowl players, injured nose tackle Casey Hampton and strong safety Troy Polamalu.

Seattle came in with what was considered a good, balanced offense and left with a 21-0 loss, coach Mike Holmgren's second shutout in his 16 years as a head coach in the NFL.

Dick LeBeau remained the coordinator under new coach Mike Tomlin, even though they've run different systems in the past. LeBeau likes the 3-4 blitzing defense and fathered the zone blitz. Tomlin grew up with the Tampa Cover 2 in a 4-3 defense.

Tomlin lets LeBeau run the show, although he's had plenty of input and some of it showed against Seattle, when the Steelers stayed with a three-man rush for most of the game with a Cover-2 scheme in the secondary.

They've also introduced a four-man line in passing schemes, removing their outside linebackers and going with four true down linemen, with end Brett Keisel normally standing up. They go to that in passing situations when they think the offense might run. That was the case last week with Shaun Alexander in Seattle's backfield.

Neither do they find it surprising that they would record their first home shutout since Heinz Field opened in 2001 with Polamalu and Hampton out of the lineup with injuries. Veteran Chris Hoke has performed well for Hampton in the past, including 2004 when the Steelers went 15-1 with Hampton out for half the season.

To replace Polamalu, they shifted Ryan Clark to strong safety, a position he played for the Washington Redskins before he signed with the Steelers as an unrestricted free agent last year. Second-year man Anthony Smith started at free safety.

"Coach Tomlin always says everybody's a playmaker out there on the field; you just have to do your job," said linebacker Clark Haggans, who has thrived in the defense this season. "We just try to do it as a team -- if Casey or Troy isn't playing, try to play team defense."

No one's doing it better. The Steelers rank first in the NFL in fewest yards allowed (235.6 per game), fewest points (9.4), fewest yards per play (4.2), and tied for most sacks (17).

Copyright (C) 2007 The Sports Xchange. All Rights Reserved.

Crushzilla
10-11-2007, 04:05 PM
Quite simply... No.

It is far too early to tell and I don't think when the 2007 season closes they will be. This defense has been solid, but didn't we expect this from the Steelers in weeks 1-5?

So far, they have been very good, but I don't think we've had the real test, yet. They will be great, but not the greatest.

MACH1
10-11-2007, 04:07 PM
uhhhh after 5 games....nooo

GBMelBlount
10-11-2007, 04:17 PM
I think I saw somewhere that '76 Steelers had 4 or 5 shutouts in their last 9 games.

fansince'76
10-11-2007, 04:19 PM
I think I saw somewhere that '76 Steelers had 4 or 5 shutouts in their last 9 games.

5 shutouts and 28 total points allowed in their last 9 games. This year's unit is really good, but not that good.

Atlanta Dan
10-11-2007, 04:23 PM
They can susbstitute that article for the old image of the egg frying to describe "this is your brain on drugs"

Here is what the 1976 Steelers did in their last 9 games of the 1976 regular season

Cincinnati Bengals 23- 6
at New York Giants 27- 0
San Diego Chargers 23- 0
at Kansas City Chiefs 45- 0
Miami Dolphins 14- 3
Houston Oilers 32-16
at Cincinnati Bengals 7- 3
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 42- 0
at Houston Oilers 21- 0

For those keeping score at home, that is 5 shutouts (3 consecutive) and 3 other games in which the other team did not score a TD.

I know there is a tendency to idealize the past, but this team may have 4 Pro Bowl defenders (Hampton, Smith, Troy & (maybe) Taylor). The 1976 Steelers had 8, including the entire defensive backfield.

Comparing the 2007 defense to the 1974-76 defense is laughable.

Steel Pit
10-11-2007, 05:00 PM
Certainly not the best Steelers defense ever, I don't care what the numbers indicate. There were a couple of 1970's defenses that will always be on top in my mind.
I would also take a couple of the mid-90's defensive units over this years unit.

In comparing the 07 unit to the 70's and 90's units, the numbers may be close BUT, the personnel in the 70's and 90's was far and away more talented.

BurghZ0n3
10-11-2007, 05:18 PM
Woodson, Lloyd, Kirkland, Gildon, Steed, Olzalsky, Williams, Brown, Buckner, Greene, Henry, and...oh, I forget the others. That's what I thought the best (that's why I fell in love with B&G back then :hug:). The 70's ....I don't know anything about :tt02::banana:

Lord Stiller
10-11-2007, 05:34 PM
Woodson, Lloyd, Kirkland, Gildon, Steed, Olzalsky, Williams, Brown, Buckner, Greene, Henry, and...oh, I forget the others. That's what I thought the best (that's why I fell in love with B&G back then :hug:). The 70's ....I don't know anything about :tt02::banana:

Carnell LAKE....how could you forget him!!!!!!

Darren Perry was also pretty decent

jjpro11
10-11-2007, 08:10 PM
Woodson, Lloyd, Kirkland, Gildon, Steed, Olzalsky, Williams, Brown, Buckner, Greene, Henry, and...oh, I forget the others. That's what I thought the best (that's why I fell in love with B&G back then :hug:). The 70's ....I don't know anything about :tt02::banana:

that linebacker core was just sick.. our super bowl winning linebackers - porter, foote, farrior, haggans, and harrison - were pretty damn fine as well. maybe not as good as the 90s, but probably the best in the league in 04-05. especially with the way farrior played in 2004. im not knocking harrison, but having a prime porter starting and a fresh harrison coming off the bench was better than right now.

Stlrs4Life
10-11-2007, 10:19 PM
Quite simply... No.

It is far too early to tell and I don't think when the 2007 season closes they will be. This defense has been solid, but didn't we expect this from the Steelers in weeks 1-5?

So far, they have been very good, but I don't think we've had the real test, yet. They will be great, but not the greatest.


Exactly, no way yet.

Steel Warrior
10-11-2007, 11:11 PM
After 5 games? Let's wait til the season is over. Made me think about Lambert and Lloyd though, two bad ass dudes! Lambert's in the HOF, Lloyd will never make the HOF, but he ranks right up there as one of our best D players ever. :smoker:

bratsinmybelly
10-12-2007, 01:55 AM
They can susbstitute that article for the old image of the egg frying to describe "this is your brain on drugs"

Here is what the 1976 Steelers did in their last 9 games of the 1976 regular season

Cincinnati Bengals 23- 6
at New York Giants 27- 0
San Diego Chargers 23- 0
at Kansas City Chiefs 45- 0
Miami Dolphins 14- 3
Houston Oilers 32-16
at Cincinnati Bengals 7- 3
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 42- 0
at Houston Oilers 21- 0

For those keeping score at home, that is 5 shutouts (3 consecutive) and 3 other games in which the other team did not score a TD.

I know there is a tendency to idealize the past, but this team may have 4 Pro Bowl defenders (Hampton, Smith, Troy & (maybe) Taylor). The 1976 Steelers had 8, including the entire defensive backfield.

Comparing the 2007 defense to the 1974-76 defense is laughable.


Enough said!

Preacher
10-12-2007, 02:21 AM
5 shutouts and 28 total points allowed in their last 9 games. This year's unit is really good, but not that good.

true... but hey...

Say we shut out a few more teams.... keep a couple more under a TD... Hmmm.


But at this point, they are incomparable.

Galax Steeler
10-12-2007, 04:52 AM
No way are they better than the deffense of the 70's it would take one hell of a deffense to match that.

BlastFurnace
10-12-2007, 10:18 AM
There has never been...nor will there ever be an equal to our 1972 - 1976 defense. Look at the stats, the points allowed, the intimidating style and the speed of that defense.

That defense, for a number of years, took over games. Not just for 1 year like the Bears and Ravens did, but for a 5-6 year period of time.

Anyone who watched that defense of the 70's knows that even this years defense does not compare.

RoethlisBURGHer
10-12-2007, 10:40 AM
The Steel Curtain defense was the best defense every in NFL History. That 1976 defense was the best of all of them. They didn't lose to the Raiders that year because of the defense, they lost because they didn't have Franco or Blier to run the rock.

The Steel Curtain owns all defenes; including Minnesota'as Purple People Eaters, Dallas' Doomsday Defense, Miami's No Name Defense, and the 90's Steelers Blitzburgh Defense.

BurghZ0n3
10-12-2007, 12:04 PM
Aaaah,...ur so right, Lord Stiller....I forgot LAKE (I knew I forgot several names yesterday)...he was the motor also, reminding others to be "physical & smart". Say, one of the casts from MAD TV looks like LAKE (bald head as well :sofunny:) Today's Defense awesome too, no doubt......:banging::banging::banging:

fansince'76
10-12-2007, 12:18 PM
Hell yeah! I like the way you think! :cheers:

Hell yes - the only thing that will keep Lloyd out of the HoF is the fact that his career was cut short due to injuries, not because his play wasn't up to snuff.

Haiku_Dirtt
10-12-2007, 01:58 PM
[QUOTE=Crushzilla;307186]Quite simply... NoQUOTE]

Concur. But we shouldn't discount the possibilities.

I will say without blinking that this is the FASTEST Steeler defense ever. Harrison, Farrior and especially Haggans have revealed speed that was less apparent last season

BlastFurnace
10-12-2007, 02:11 PM
[QUOTE=Crushzilla;307186]Quite simply... NoQUOTE]

Concur. But we shouldn't discount the possibilities.

I will say without blinking that this is the FASTEST Steeler defense ever. Harrison, Farrior and especially Haggans have revealed speed that was less apparent last season

Maybe the fastest, but not nearly the best.

Edman
10-12-2007, 03:55 PM
The best? I don't think so. The 2007 Steelers D has great potential to be dominant though. Could it be due to a new, unshackled D.Lebeau having FULL control over the Defense?

Atlanta Dan
10-12-2007, 03:58 PM
The best? I don't think so. The 2007 Steelers D has great potential to be dominant though. Could it be due to a new, unshackled D.Lebeau having FULL control over the Defense?

Or could it be because they played a Browns team that benched its starting QB in the 2nd quarter, a Bills team that always will find a way to lose, a 49ers team with no offense, and a Seahawks team showcasing an aging RB with a broken wrist?

I am pleased they are playing well but will be even more pleased if they play well against Cincy and some other comeptent offenses.

Preacher
10-12-2007, 04:01 PM
[quote=Haiku_Dirtt;307464]

Maybe the fastest, but not nearly the best.

Yet...

I don't put it past them. Don't forget, we don't have a lot of age issues on this defense. They way our LB's and secondary hits... heck, the way our NT hits... the fact that we should keep most if not all of them for quite a few years, the fact that they are faster then the 70's D... we could develop into a rival defense to the 70's D.

And that, my friends, will bring us 2 or 3 more SB's.

fansince'76
10-12-2007, 04:03 PM
They way our LB's and secondary hits... heck, the way our NT hits... we could develop into a rival defense to the 70's D.

Possibly, but I don't see it - when the NFL starts changing rules to counteract the dominance of our D (like it did in the '70s), then I'll say we've made it.

BlastFurnace
10-12-2007, 04:34 PM
[quote=Preacher307467]

Yet...

I don't put it past them. Don't forget, we don't have a lot of age issues on this defense. They way our LB's and secondary hits... heck, the way our NT hits... the fact that we should keep most if not all of them for quite a few years, the fact that they are faster then the 70's D... we could develop into a rival defense to the 70's D.

And that, my friends, will bring us 2 or 3 more SB's.

Preacher...did you ever see the 70's defense play? If you did, how can you honestly compare this unit to them? If you didn't, I can understand why you don't understand how silly this comparison is. The 70's defense had a player that single handedly caused the NFL to change the rules on defense (Mel Blount).

Let's see this unit stop the 2007 Patriots before we compare them to a team that not only sustained greatness for a 6 year period of time, but also had 4 Hall of Famers on it and argueably 6 HOF's if you include Greenewood and Andy Russell.

Preacher
10-12-2007, 06:07 PM
[quote=Preacher;307483]

Preacher...did you ever see the 70's defense play? If you did, how can you honestly compare this unit to them? If you didn't, I can understand why you don't understand how silly this comparison is. The 70's defense had a player that single handedly caused the NFL to change the rules on defense (Mel Blount).

Let's see this unit stop the 2007 Patriots before we compare them to a team that not only sustained greatness for a 6 year period of time, but also had 4 Hall of Famers on it and argueably 6 HOF's if you include Greenewood and Andy Russell.

Um....

Let me refer you back.....

Yet...

I don't put it past them. Don't forget, we don't ...

that is not a comparison. IT is a statement that we do not measure up now, but it holds that in the future, it may or may not.

Preacher
10-12-2007, 06:10 PM
Possibly, but I don't see it - when the NFL starts changing rules to counteract the dominance of our D (like it did in the '70s), then I'll say we've made it.

I agree.

But then I look at the fact that our two best LB's in the future still MAY be sitting on the bench as rookies.

If they both come as advertised.... and yes, that is big if... We definitely may rival the early teams, maybe not individually, but as a unit.

For those of you who are about to jump all over this, let me again point to the operative word here...

IF

SteelFist
10-12-2007, 07:06 PM
Hell yes - the only thing that will keep Lloyd out of the HoF is the fact that his career was cut short due to injuries, not because his play wasn't up to snuff.


I agree 100%. I was hurt when Lloyd's injuries sold him short.

Its funny though, I was listening to a commentator for a game in which Joey Porter was playing (Don't remember which one), and a commentator said that Steeler fans often drew comparisons between Joey and Lloyd. And the other commentator responded by saying, "I played against Greg Lloyd, he's no Greg Lloyd." I found that amusing to say the least.

Rotorhead
10-12-2007, 07:58 PM
I think in the next couple years this def has the potential to be one of the best, just look at our core of players on Def, Hampton, Polamalu, Tayler, Gay (if he continues to improve like he is now), Harrison, Farrior and Haggans all have the potential to be or already top Def guys, add in the 2 new LB's and we have a talented YOUNG def that is hungry. Plus one of the greates Def minds in the game currently inventing a newer more potent defensive scheme . . . keeps me excited for the next few years just for the possibilities.

Elvis
10-12-2007, 09:14 PM
:jawdrop:
This shouldnt even be in discussion
in my opinion.. Whoever it was saying that Greg Lloyd will be in the Hall Of Fame... I Dont ever see that happening sorry....
:computer:

SteelDogFan
10-12-2007, 10:00 PM
I do this I don't know if anyone else does. When someone mentions the Steelers Defense of the 70's that is exactly what I look at The 70's teams as a whole. I don't take it as one team for one year being better than one of the Steelers Defenses (plural) of the 70's. Which is what I believe some are trying to do. I have the problem of grouping the entire seventies Steelers Defenses together as one and the conclusion I come to is NO WAY better that the Steelers of the 70's. If I look at it that way there has never been and will never be that in the NFL again.

But if I just take one year and place it against one year I have to re-consider my answer. When the Ravens Defense broke the scoring record for points allowed I would argue until my tongue dropped out, but the truth is that may have been the best one year defense that the NFL has ever seen. I could include the Bears of 85.

As for the defense this year they are ahead of all the Steelers Defenses of the 70's and may end up allowing fewer points. So I guess we have to wait and see how they do against the Pats and Cinci. But they are on pace to allow fewer points. I mean they have not given up a first half TD that in itself is, off the charts, in todays NFL.

As for any team being better than the Steelers Defenses of the 70's as a whole that is IMPOSSIBLE. I don't want to misquote him but I believe it was Joe Green who said the best steelers defense was the year they did not make it to the Superbowl 1976. So for seven or eight straight years the dominated. I don't see that happening again.

Haiku_Dirtt
10-13-2007, 03:33 AM
[QUOTE=Haiku_Dirtt;307464]

Maybe the fastest, but not nearly the best.

And that we agree.

But you will not be the next best defense without speed.

Let's put the 70's where it belongs...in the trophy case. It's not fair to compare generations unless you think that Troy would have problems making the team in the late 70's. Let's not get carried away.

This NFL is a "speed kills" league. So a speedster who is a football player and loves the physical nature of the game is the new greatest...i.e. Troy Polamalu.

Am I wrong? Pretty sure Dungy agrees.

Kittyfish
10-13-2007, 10:17 AM
Okay, the general consensus is that this defense is not the greatest of all time, that the 70s defense was superior. So, to tweak the question, could this be the greatest Steelers defense since the 70s? Opinions?

Crushzilla
10-13-2007, 12:47 PM
Okay, the general consensus is that this defense is not the greatest of all time, that the 70s defense was superior. So, to tweak the question, could this be the greatest Steelers defense since the 70s? Opinions?

The problem, in my eyes, is that it isn't necessarily that the defense in.. say.. '76... was superior. Its that its only been 5 games against...

Charlie Frye
The Buffalo Bills with J.P. Losman
Alex Smith and the atrocious 49 offense
The Seattle Seahawk's weak ass passing attack.

Most of these teams get it done on the ground. In that respect, YES. This defense is very good. The streak of no-100 yarders is a tribute to that.

Against the Cardinals, I realize we only gave up 14 points, but the defense looked suspect at times. Including that 86 yard drive toward the end capped off with Edge touchdown. Fitzgerald lit us up.

I know, I know... We had 11 penalties, Whiz knew our boys' tendencies, etc, etc.

All I'm saying is that there are some weak spots on this defense that a team like New England are going to be able to exploit.

"Well.... that's New England... that offense is REALLY good..."

If this defense wants to come close to "best since '76" than they better be able to contain New England and any other offense they face this season.

BlastFurnace
10-13-2007, 02:03 PM
I agree 100%. I was hurt when Lloyd's injuries sold him short.

Its funny though, I was listening to a commentator for a game in which Joey Porter was playing (Don't remember which one), and a commentator said that Steeler fans often drew comparisons between Joey and Lloyd. And the other commentator responded by saying, "I played against Greg Lloyd, he's no Greg Lloyd." I found that amusing to say the least.

Porter wasn't as good as Lloyd. Lloyd talked a good game and backed it up...not to mention...a rookie left tackle or a running back couldn't take Greg on by themselves. The last couple of years, Joey could be handled one-on-one by either on too many occassions. Joey didn't always back up what his mouth said.

SteelDogFan
10-13-2007, 03:06 PM
Thats one thing I have to agree with the pass defense is still kinda suspect. They will have their first real challenge when they play the Pats. I got to watch the seventies teams and I have to say even though this team is good they do not instill the fear in the opposing offense that the teams of the seventies did. I truly believe that teams would look on their calender to see when they palyed the Steelers.

Not that they were scared but they new they were in for some hitting. As a matter of fact I believe the 90's D put more fear into the opponent. The way the NFL is today with so much parity I don't believe any defense has that aura about them. I don't know if anyone remembers that Monday night game against the Bills in 94. That was one of the hardest hitting games I have ever seen. Just recently in an ESPN interview Jim Harbuagh said that there was one guy that he feared when he looked across the line that was Greg Lloyd.

Steeldude
10-13-2007, 03:29 PM
this year's defense hasn't really faced anyone decent. this defense is nowhere near any of the 70's defenses or even the defenses from the mid-90's.

I-Want-Troy's-Hair
10-14-2007, 12:40 AM
Defense '07 -- Shades of steel, shades of history
Sunday, October 14, 2007
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


The Steel Curtain defense had nothing over the one playing today. The Blitzburgh defense of the mid-90s could not hold a candle to the 2007 version.

In fact, no Steelers defense in the past 70 years has accomplished what this one has through the first five games of the season. As a team, the Steelers have allowed 47 points with one touchdown coming on a punt return.

No Steelers team gave up fewer points in its first five games since the 1937 club allowed 38 in its first five in an era when scoring a touchdown was cause for a ticker-tape parade.

Not even some of the defenders who helped do it believe it.

"Really?'' nose tackle Chris Hoke asked. "I didn't realize that. That's huge. You think of all the great defenses who have played here. All the great Steel Curtain teams in the '70s, the defenses Bill Cowher had in the '90s. Some teams we had in the 2000s. We've had some great teams here. That's a big accomplishment."

Even the 1976 Steelers, the one Art Rooney Sr. called his best team, did not come close. In perhaps the greatest defensive performance of all time, that team shut out five of its final nine opponents and did not allow a touchdown in eight of those nine games.

But that was not the case in the first five games of 1976 when they allowed 110 points, not even close to what this team has done.

They lead the NFL in fewest points per game (9.4) and are first in fewest yards per game (235.6), fewest yards per play (4.2) and tied for first with 17 sacks. They have allowed no touchdowns in the first half of games and only two field goals by San Francisco.

The Steelers are playing the kind of dominating defense that could spawn another lasting nickname.

Deshea Townsend, the 10-year veteran cornerback, has a few theories as to why they have been so dominant.

"I think for one, no big plays," Townsend said.

The Steelers have allowed no pass completion longer than the one of 38 yards caught by Larry Fitzgerald in Arizona. There have been four passes of 25 yards or longer against them. In the first five games last season, they already had allowed two of 48 yards or longer and six of 25 and above.

"Our offense is playing well too," Townsend said. "That helps.''

The Steelers have possessed the ball for an average of 35 minutes, 12 seconds -- nearly 10 1/2 minutes longer than their opponents. That helps a defense stay fresh and, when they're not on the field, they can't give up yardage.

As for other reasons: Just one starter changed from last season (linebacker James Harrison for Joey Porter) on what has been a good defense for several years. They have had better play from the cornerbacks, and an improved pass rush. Less than potent opposing offenses through five games also could be cited except the Seahawks came in with a strong defense last Sunday and left with the first shutout in Heinz Field history.

"We've had some good defenses here before," said end Aaron Smith. "I don't know, maybe guys have been longer in this system, more together. This defense has been the same group of guys for a long time."

Coordinator Dick LeBeau, as previously noted, also has been given more freedom to call his defenses by coach Mike Tomlin. LeBeau has deployed a different defense on occasion this season as well.

Traditionally, on passing downs, the Steelers would move into their dime defense -- six in the secondary, one middle linebacker and four up front with the two of those on the outside being linebackers. They call in the quarter defense when they use three safeties and three cornerbacks instead of two and four.

At times they have used four linemen up front instead of two with two linebackers in their pass defense. Those four, when healthy, are Smith, Hoke, Casey Hampton and Brett Keisel with Keisel often standing up and the other three down.

They call that formation their Big Quarters and use it with six defensive backs and one middle linebacker.

"Some games we play it quite a bit and some we don't play at all," Hoke said.

Its use is more effective on second-and-long when a team might throw or run from a spread formation.

"They try to come out with multiple-receiver formations and run the ball," Hoke said. "We try to put some bigger guys up front; it deters them from running the ball."

"I like it," Smith said. "It's a nice changeup, especially when teams try to get us in quarters and then run the ball. It gives them a different look."

There will never be another Steel Curtain, but this defense is playing like it.

http://postgazette.com/pg/07287/825304-66.stm]

Preacher
10-14-2007, 01:55 AM
I find it interesting that comparisons to the Steel Curtain are being made.

It is DEFINITELY too early for those comparisons... but if we start shutting out teams... they will come.

Haiku_Dirtt
10-14-2007, 04:26 AM
Or could it be because they played ...

The more I read this reply the better the music sounded. Let's cut through the cynasism to get to the cynasism.

Just think if we can find another 14 examples just like it this season... And when you hear echos of the Browns being "Top Tiered" for weekly trivial waging doesn't that sound dysfunctional. Poor opponents might elevate us into a bad draft position.

More than likely it's because we played _______. But a chance that what above the shoulder pads is being impacted by the lastest shift to the new field general might make us pleasantly surprised.

Steeldude
10-14-2007, 06:52 AM
1976 steelers -

Cincinnati Bengals-------------W 23- 6
New York Giants----------------W 27- 0
San Diego Chargers-----------W 23- 0
Kansas City Chiefs-------------W 45- 0
Miami Dolphins------------------W 14- 3
Houston Oilers ------------------W 32-16
Cincinnati Bengals--------------W 7- 3
Tampa Bay Buccaneers-------W 42- 0
Houston Oilers-------------------W 21- 0

steelers - 234

opponents - 28

this 2007 defense has a lot to prove to be better than the steel curtain of the 70's.

GBMelBlount
10-14-2007, 08:51 AM
Sounds like ave points per game not far off from '76 Steelers so far. Also wondering if ave PPG for overall league any different than 70's with some of todays high powered offenses?

4xSBChamps
10-14-2007, 01:44 PM
Here is what the 1976 Steelers did in their last 9 games of the 1976 regular season

Cincinnati Bengals 23- 6
at New York Giants 27- 0
San Diego Chargers 23- 0
at Kansas City Chiefs 45- 0
Miami Dolphins 14- 3
Houston Oilers 32-16
at Cincinnati Bengals 7- 3
Tampa Bay Buccaneers 42- 0
at Houston Oilers 21- 0

Comparing the 2007 defense to the 1974-76 defense is laughable.

No-offense to this Forum's younger-members, but those who never saw the '75/'76 defense in-action really might-not be qualified to compare todays, or even the defense of the mid-'90s:
that team was LOADED with Pro-Bowlers and Hall-of-Fame players from sideline to sideline.....
imagine Andy Russell being your 'weakest' line-backer!!!!!

The Steelers played much of the '76 depleted by injuries (which probably kept them from beating Oakland for the AFC Championship that season..... they beat the Dolts 40-14 AT Baltimore in a game that wasn't as-close-as the score indicated! ), yet in many games, instead of punting-away late in the game, Noll went for it on 4th down, with the game already at-hand (to keep the defense off the field ), and the team gained-enough to move the chains anyhow.

Bradshaw had been slammed head-first into the turf at Cleveland by Turkey Jones, and Swann had been laid-out in the opener at Oakland by George Atkinson, so the passing-game was almost non-existent:
as the offense came-off the field, it was said that many times, Greene would say to his passing-teammates "That's OK..... you guys hold-'em, and WE'LL score!"

The Steeler defense of the mid-'70s forced the League to change the rules (legalized open-hand pass-blocking, limiting down-field 'chucks', etc. ), and the game has since become glorified pass-and-tab:
none of today's wide-receivers would've 'pranced' through the Steelers secondary withour fear of short-neck diesease.

The best defense in NFL history played long-before the advent of mugging for the camera after making a common tackle, hoping to get shown on ESPN's SportsCenter.