View Full Version : Three Keys to a Pittsburgh Victory Sunday in Chicago

09-19-2009, 06:21 PM
Three Keys to a Pittsburgh Victory Sunday in Chicago
By: Matt Loede

The Steelers are set for their first game in 10 days tomorrow when they battle the Bears in Chicago. The Steelers are 1-10 in regular season games lifetime in Chicago, so they have history somewhat against them when they hit the road tomorrow. Here’s my keys to a Steelers win in Chicago, along with a final prediction.

1. Force Jay Cutler Out of the Pocket w/ Pressure – Seems simple, but if you watch Cutler in his Bears regular season debut last week, his throws were rushed and more than one of his four picks came when he was on the run. Unlike Ben Roethlisberger, Cutler is not a great thrower on the run, and if the Steelers can pressure him, it will force some mistakes.

2. Control the Tempo – Play like the Super Bowl champs. Don’t allow the Bears to think they are the better team, and the biggest way to do that is impose your will on both sides of the ball. A running game for sure would help, and that may mean more Rashard Mendenhall. He’s a bigger back than Willie Parker, and can hopefully pound out some yards that the team was not able to get a week ago. Bottom line though – your the better team – play like it.

3. Turnovers - Too many last week vs the Titans, including the key one by Hines Ward by the goal-line. One way to give the Bears a feeling they can hang with the Steelers is by giving them a short field with costly turnovers that will give them confidence. It would be nice to FORCE some turnovers to give the offense a short field or two to put points on the board.

So there you go, I really feel that the Steelers are the better football team, and I think the Bears coming in to the season were highly overrated. They have no wide outs, and their defense is not nearly as good as they have been made out to be.

The Steelers should win this game, and they can beat themselves, I don’t think comparing rosters the Bears can win this game without some help.

Pittsburgh 27 Chicago 13

Bears vs. Steelers: Matchups and picking a winner

When the Bears have the ball

Key matchups

TE Greg Olsen vs. S Tyrone Carter

The Steelers will be doing all they can to prevent this matchup from occurring, as Carter is listed at 5-9 and Olsen is listed at 6-5. And the Bears will be doing all they can to make this matchup happen. Carter is bound to be forced into covering Olsen at times during four quarters of play, and when he is it will be up to Bears quarterback Jay Cutler to find Olsen.

Bears' interior line vs. NT Casey Hampton

One of the problems against the Packers is the Bears blockers couldn't move the Packers front. Against Hampton, one of the NFL's premier nose guards and a bull in the middle of the field, the Bears will need to use double teams and angle blocks. They also should try to take advantage of Olin Kreutz's superior quickness. If the Bears commit too much manpower to Hampton, Steelers linebackers will be free to wreak havoc.:tt::tt: (Here's to the Steelers Linebackers May they "Cry HAVOC and let lose the dogs of war. " - mesa)

When the Steelers have the ball

Key matchups

WR Hines Ward vs. CB Zack Bowman

Bowman, who replaces Nathan Vasher at right cornerback, has the size (6-1, 193) to compete with Ward (6-0, 205). But Ward is a seasoned veteran with a knack for coming up with the big catch. The Steelers' star has 21-career 100-yard receiving games. Plus Ward is known for his punishing blocks, and the NFL even implemented a safety rule in his name after Ward broke the jaw of Bengals linebacker Keith Rivers.

TE Heath Miller vs. LB Hunter Hillenmeyer

Hillenmeyer has big shoes to fill stepping in at middle linebacker for the injured Brian Urlacher. Hillenmeyer lost his starting job at strong-side linebacker last season then underwent surgery for a sports hernia. He seems to be fully recovered, and he's a smart player, but he lacks Urlacher's great physical tools. Miller is coming off a career-high-tying eight receptions game against Tennessee. Now in his fifth season, Miller has 21 career touchdowns and just one fumble.

Picking a winner
David Haugh, Steelers 24, Bears 20: Can Jay Cutler look like Cutler and show poise instead of panic against the NFL's top defense? Can the Bears' secondary prevent the big play this week? Questions outnumber answers, and 0-2 looms.

Vaughn McClure, Steelers 21, Bears 14: Jay Cutler will rebound from a horrific season debut with two TD passes and no picks, but the Bears will find it tough to get yards against a stingy Steelers defense even without Troy Polamalu.

Fred Mitchell, Bears 23, Steelers 20: The Bears will need at least one special teams touchdown or a defensive score to hang with the defending Super Bowl champs. Matt Forte needs to have a productive day.

Rick Morrissey, Steelers 21, Bears 16: The Bears' offense will improve--it can't be much worse than it was last week. Unfortunately, the Steelers' defense is much, much better than the one the Bears saw in Green Bay.

Dan Pompei, Bears 20, Steelers 17: Don't be surprised if Jay Cutler is the NFC offensive player of the week. He has a little motivation. The Bears should be able to take advantage of the absence of Troy Polamalu.

Copyright © 2009, Chicago Tribune

09-19-2009, 06:27 PM
Greg Olsen and Hester will be the only threats the Steelers will have on Sunday. The bears roster is shortening already and the defense will bottle him like the Packers did. The inside OL is pretty weak so I like for our front 3 to attack a lot and pressure Cutler into turnovers. Our secondary should be fine, I have faith in Carter to hold these no name receivers off the board, and our special teams defense improves every season so Hester should be contained.

09-19-2009, 07:22 PM
Bears 0-2
Broncos 2-0

Go figure...

09-19-2009, 08:03 PM
Force Jay Cutler Out of the Pocket w/ Pressure – Seems simple, but if you watch Cutler in his Bears regular season debut last week, his throws were rushed and more than one of his four picks came when he was on the run. Unlike Ben Roethlisberger, Cutler is not a great thrower on the run, and if the Steelers can pressure him, it will force some mistakes.

I've been saying this all week - put the pressure on Cutler early and often and force him to make costly mistakes as he did last week against the Pack. As the article states, Cutler is not a good passer when he is forced to run and our D needs to take advantage of his weaknesses.

My prediction: Steelers 27, Bears 13. :tt02:

09-19-2009, 08:17 PM
1. Get the run game going.
2. Block well on both the run and pass.
3. No turnovers.
4. Win field position.
5. Get to Cutler.

09-19-2009, 09:50 PM
I think the Steelers will be fairly dominant, just maybe not on the scoreboard. Dont forget Danieal Manning......he was an even better returnman than Hester last year...

09-19-2009, 09:56 PM
It's not difficult.

1) Ben have a good game. Run a lot of no huddle.

2) Defense plays almost as good as they normally do (they can't play the same without Troy)

Chicago won't beat the Steelers. The Steelers will have to beat themselves to lose this game.:coffee:

09-19-2009, 09:59 PM
Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker a challenge for Chicago Bears

James Harrison could give Orlando Pace a lot of trouble rushing passer

September 20, 2009

James Harrison is the right outside linebacker in the Steelers' 3-4 front, but he may move to the other side of the formation in nickel and dime defenses. Harrison likely will be rushing the passer about 80 percent of the time.

Nicknamed "Silverback" by teammates, the NFL's defensive player of the year in 2008 is an extremely physical player, an explosive hitter and an outstanding competitor. He has the exaggerated physique of a cartoon character and tremendous instincts. He is almost always around the ball.

Harrison stands only 6 feet, so he gets underneath the pads of pass protectors and gives taller blockers like Orlando Pace fits.

In pass protection, Pace will need help. Kellen Davis or Michael Gaines should see a lot of action in two-tight end sets. Running backs will have to help with chip blocks.

When Pace is one-on-one, his best hope will be to use his size advantage to engulf Harrison, who weighs 242 pounds. Pace can do that at 6-7, 325 pounds.

Pass coverage is not Harrison's strength, but he is an excellent run defender. It's best to run away from Harrison, not at him.

-- Dan Pompei

(Fine double team Harrison. Woodley should have a big day. - mesa)

09-19-2009, 10:01 PM
Harrison is going to destroy Pace and eat Cutler for his afternoon lunch. Pace was a great lineman but he is up there in age for a line man and has lost a few steps the last couple of years and against Harrison you got to have the whole package. Cutler will be hearing feeling the turf a lot tomorrow without a doubt.

09-19-2009, 10:23 PM
Bears' pass rushers understand they will dictate outcome against Steelers
By Bob LeGere | Daily Herald Staff
Published: 9/19/2009 9:22 PM

The toughest question the Bears face Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers and maybe for the remainder of the season is this: How do you compensate for the loss of six-time Pro Bowl middle linebacker Brian Urlacher?

More pressure and more production from the defensive line is the obvious answer, at least to the Bears' defensive linemen.

"When you lose a guy like Brian, it's kind of unbelievable because you use him as a crutch," said right defensive end Adewale Ogunleye, who had 2 sacks last week. "He's the kind of guy that you know is always going to be there for you, and be there for the team. He has a calming effect.

"When things go wrong, he's the guy that brings everybody together."

But Urlacher won't be there anymore to make the big play or restore order when there is chaos. Ogunleye has the solution.

"The D-line just has to make sure that things don't go haywire," the nine-year veteran said. "We've got to play our game, make life easy for (Urlacher's replacement) Hunter (Hillenmeyer), and the rest of the linebackers and the DBs. This week it's definitely going to be on the D-line."

With eight-year veteran Alex Brown at the other end, seven-year man Anthony Adams at nose tackle and six-year veteran and three-time Pro Bowler Tommie Harris at the three-technique tackle, the Bears have a unit capable of stepping up to the challenge.

It won't be easy against the Steelers' 6-foot-5, 241-pound quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who already has won two Super Bowls at 27.

"There's more pressure on the line," Bears coach Lovie Smith said. "We lost a Hall of Fame-type player in Brian Urlacher, but there's pressure on our defensive line just by the opponent we're playing.

"We can't allow the quarterback to pump the ball, to hold the ball. We have to make him get it out when he's supposed to. It's hard guarding guys forever. That in itself is a big enough challenge for us."

Backup defensive end Mark Anderson amped up the pass rush last week by moving inside to tackle in passing situations, and he knows the best chance for the defense to overcome Urlacher's loss is by getting more production from the line.

"If you ask me, that's what we need this week and for the rest of the season," said Anderson, who has shown flashes of his rookie season, when he had 12 sacks in 2006.

"We have to apply the pressure. We have to be the ones to take control of the game and help out the secondary and free the linebackers up so they can go make plays. From here on out it's going to be really important that we get pressure on the quarterback and stop the run, too."

Roethlisberger does a better job than almost any quarterback when it comes to buying time in the pocket and giving receivers extra time to work their way free. Many of his biggest plays come when he's allowed to pump fake or hold the ball until just before the rush arrives.

If he can keep the Bears' pass rush at bay for an extra second or two it creates a dangerous situation in the secondary.

"If he pumps a couple times, you can't put that on the secondary to cover for six to seven seconds," Brown said. "That's when the guys come open and he hits them."

The Bears' secondary will be healthier than it was at Green Bay, with free safety Danieal Manning and cornerback Zack Bowman expected to start after playing complementary roles against the Packers.

But the quicker the rush gets to Roethlisberger, the less time the defensive backs have to guard Steelers wide receivers Hines Ward and Santonio Holmes and tight end Heath Miller. Those three combined for 25 catches and 298 yards last week.

"We definitely have to get pressure," Smith said. "In order for a quarterback to hold the ball and go to his second and third receivers, you don't have pressure. (Roethlisberger) does like to make plays right up until (the last second). He does it as well as anybody. It will be a big challenge for our guys."

09-19-2009, 10:33 PM
Offense: Long sustained drives
Defense: Kill the guy with the ball! :mad:


The Lakelander
09-19-2009, 10:45 PM
1. Give Ben enough time ... The Bears over-match our right side. Colon needs to have a good game here and give Ben enough time to get through his progressions.

2. Run the ball down there throats so Jerome Bettis will STFU ... :toofunny: ... but NO! ... since FWP sucks on the road, I doubt we're going to run it all that well. Jerome will look brilliant for another week anyways. So 2. actually is this ... have another banner day on special teams (punts and returns) to win the field position battle big time!

3a. Keep penalties to a minimum, especially the pre-snap variety. Ben's a great QB on the road for the most part. Let's help him out with down and distance this week.

3b. Come out of this game with no other significant injuries ... especially on the defensive side.

09-20-2009, 10:09 AM
Here would be my 3 keys to victory today:

1. The OL MUST step up today against the Bears very good DL.
2. Shut down Matt Forte. If we stop their rushing game, then I would expect another bad game by Cutler.
3. Pressure Jay Cutler. I expect big games from Harrison and Woodley today.