View Full Version : Roethlisberger thriving as Steelers' offense goes on attack

10-19-2009, 10:47 PM
Roethlisberger thriving as Steelers' offense goes on attack

Posted Oct. 19, 2009 @ 8:35 p.m.
By Mike Wilkening

At this rate, Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger could challenge Dan Marino for the single-season passing yards record. Roethlisberger, who completed 23-of-35 passes for 417 yards with three TDs and two interceptions in a 27-14 win vs. Cleveland, is on pace to throw for 5,032 yards. Marino threw for 5,084 yards in 1984. While it's difficult to envision a quarterback slated to play all but one of his final 10 games outdoors challenging Marino's record, Roethlisberger's prolific production early this season is eye-catching all the same. He leads the NFL in passing yards (1,887) entering Monday night. "He's really good," Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said of Roethlisberger, according to the Pittsburgh-Post Gazette. "He's in total command of the offense. It's fun to watch at times."

The PFW spin

Some might lament the Steelers throwing so much Roethlisberger is on pace for 552 passes, which would shatter his career-high of 469 attempts but they would be foolish not to open up the offense. The Steelers' running game is solid, but counting upon it to carry the offense is risky, with second-year back Rashard Mendenhall best as a complement to that potent passing game at this stage of his career and Willie Parker best suited as a change-of-pace back.

Pittsburgh is a passing team first and foremost, as it should be. Roethlisberger has very good receivers, with starting WRs Hines Ward and Santonio Holmes complemented nicely by rookie deep threat Mike Wallace. And TE Heath Miller (34 catches) is so good at working open underneath, he's second on the team in receptions behind Ward. Roethlisberger has capable targets attacking every level of the defense, and this puts opponents in a tough spot. Pass-rush pressure can short-circuit the Steelers' passing attack, and Roethlisberger has taken 16 sacks in six starts this season, but he's very adept at side-stepping the rush and allowing his receivers to work open. Teams who have suspect pass defenses are going to struggle to cope with the Steelers' passing attack, and the Browns, who have had problems with potent passing attacks, surrendered nine passes of 20 yards or more on Sunday.

For all of the yards Roethlisberger has thrown for, his accuracy is striking. He has completed 72.5 percent of his throws. When a quarterback is that sharp, and when he's averaging 9.1 yards per attempt, why not throw as often as the Steelers are doing?

Through Sunday, Pittsburgh was the only club ranked in the top five in total offense and defense. Its passing offense is second only to Indianapolis. Yes, the Steelers' defense of their Super Bowl title is going better than it did three years ago.

10-19-2009, 11:02 PM
The Steelers' running game is solid, :toofunny: ....so now one, one hundred yd game by a runner constitutes a " solid " running game ?

10-20-2009, 01:49 AM
:toofunny: ....so now one, one hundred yd game by a runner constitutes a " solid " running game ?

we had success running on Cinci and Detroit when we actually tried to run, and we had 140 yards on 36 carries against the Browns.

we did go over 100 yards rushing as a team against the Bengals and Bears

we can't expect frequent 100+ yard rushers with a our new running back by committee approach, and certainly not with our prolific passing attack

what we had against the Browns was pretty good because it offered balance, 36 runs per 35 passes