View Full Version : View From The Press Box - Vikings-Steelers recap

10-25-2009, 11:03 PM
View From The Press Box
Vikings-Steelers recap
October 25th, 2009

Player of the game: Inside linebacker James Farrior.

LaMarr Woodley and Keyaron Fox had a fumble return and an interception return for a touchdown, respectively, so they cancel each other out.

Plus, Farrior played one of his best games ever as a Steeler, and that is saying something.

Farrior had a game-high 15 tackles as well as a sack. He also loomed large in the goal-line stand the Steelers made in the third quarter.

Farror and Fox combined on the tackle that stopped running back Adrian Peterson short of the end zone. He also had the coverage on the passes that fell incomplete on second and third down, forcing the Vikings to settle for an 18-yard field goal by Ryan Longwell.

“He’s our defensive captain and leader,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said. “He’s one heck of one to boot, he’s always ready to play. The stage is never too big for James.”

Play of the game: Brett Keisel’s strip and Woodley’s 77-yard fumble return.

How badly did the Steelers and their defense need Woodley’s first NFL touchdown?

They had allowed the Vikings to drive from their own 3-yard line to the Steelers’ 8-yard line in the fourth quarter of a three-point game. They had also allowed Minnesota to convert three times on third down, including once when the Vikings needed 18 yards to move the chains.

With Favre poised to get the Vikings into the end zone for a go-ahead touchdown, Keisel knocked the ball out of the veteran quarterback’s right hand. That set the stage for Woodley, who followed his blocks as if he were a seasoned running back and weaved his way for the Steelers’ first defensive touchdown of the season.

“Coach (Dick) LeBeau always preaches ‘If you get an interception or pick up a fumble everybody turn and block somebody,’ ” Woodley said. “That’s what we do in practice, so when it comes to the games it’s just natural.”

Hit of the game: Ryan Clark’s welcome-to-the-NFL-rookie shot.

Wide receiver Percy Harvin flashed open in the middle of the field near the end of the third quarter. But the rookie sensation couldn’t hold onto Favre’s third-down pass after Clark lit him up.

Harvin stayed down after the hit. Unfortunately for the Steelers, nobody came close to hitting him in the fourth quarter when Harvin returned a kickoff 88 yards for a touchdown.

Telling statistic: Time of possession

The Vikings had the ball for almost 14 minutes more than the Steelers, which explains why the reigning Super Bowl champions were rather quiet on offense — and had one less touchdown than their defense.

“We had a couple of three and outs and things of that nature,” Tomlin said. “You’re not going to find a rhythm within games like that. We didn’t have enough snaps.”

Need to fix: Kickoff coverage team.

The Steelers allowed a kickoff return for a touchdown for a second consecutive week, and it almost cost them dearly.

“I’m going to get it fixed,” Tomlin said, “whether it’s schematics, people or both.”

Notable quotes

“Since y’all had wrote us off as defense earlier maybe you guys think that but we’re just playing man, having fun. This game’s supposed to be fun and we got back to that. Quit worry about making sure we stop people in the fourth quarter because you heard about it so much. Now it’s just time to play football and enjoy it.” – Clark on if the Steelers needed a game where the defense closed out the opposition.

“We’ve got to be able to pick each other up, and they did it today. I’m really happy with the way they played. It was fun.” – Quarterback Ben Roethlisberger on the Steelers’ defense.

“More than anything they trust how what they do fits in the big picture or the big scheme of things. We very rarely have people out of place. They’re usually where they’re supposed to be, seeing things they’re supposed to be, and when you do that and combine that with the energy and enthusiasm big plays happen and thankfully they happened for us today.” – Tomlin on the opportunistic defense.

“He had just got smashed by James Harrison. I don’t know if he was in the mood to talk.” – Roethlisberger on his brief chat with Favre after the games.

“I thought about doing a dance and my body wouldn’t let me.” – Woodley on his 77-yard fumble return for a touchdown.

Next up: Lots of rest.

The Steelers get a bye next weekend and don’t return to action until they visit unbeaten Denver on Dec. 9.

That will give injured players such as outside linebacker Lawrence Timmons (ankle) and defensive end Travis Kirschke (calf) extra time to heal as well as strong safety Troy Polamalu, who played with a brace on the knee that he sprained in the Steelers’ season opener.

10-25-2009, 11:12 PM
This is Woodley's 2nd TD. He got on last year against the Ravens on Monday night. And who is going to replace Clark since he probably won't play in Denver. I'd really like to talk to the schedule maker about that one.

10-25-2009, 11:33 PM
The Steelers get a bye next weekend and don’t return to action until they visit unbeaten Denver on Dec. 9. Wow thats a long bye.....LoL.......November 9th i think u meant.

10-26-2009, 09:19 AM
Does anyone have video/gif of the Ryan Clark hit on Harvin? I love when he blows people up, and had to miss from part of the third quarter on to pick my wife up at the airport.