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mesaSteeler
12-07-2009, 12:10 AM
Starkey: The Steelers stink
http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/sports/steelers/s_656556.html#
By Joe Starkey
TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Monday, December 7, 2009

Ten quick takes on the Steelers' stunning, 27-24 loss to the Oakland Raiders ...

This just in: The Steelers have accepted an invitation to the PapaJohns.com Bowl, where they will play Northern Illinois and probably lose on account of their defense folding in the fourth quarter. Has there ever been a more depressing football weekend involving the local pro and college teams?

Inexcusable. That's one word to describe the repeated miscommunications on Dick LeBeau's defense. For the second time in three weeks, the inability to relay a simple call from the sidelines among all 11 defenders cost the Steelers dearly. Two weeks ago, it happened when Kansas City's Chris Chambers made a 61-yard catch in overtime. Yesterday, it was Louis Murphy's 11-yard touchdown catch over Ryan Mundy with 9 seconds left. "We were supposed to blitz from one side, but we ended up blitzing from both sides," Mundy said. "It was just a little miscommunication, that's all." Yeah, that's all. Only cost the Steelers the game and maybe their season.

That was the Oakland Raiders, mind you, who scored three touchdowns in the fourth quarter, on drives of 57, 84 and 88 yards. The Raiders had 10 touchdowns ALL SEASON to that point. They also had two starting linemen out of the game when they drove 88 yards on 10 plays in 107 seconds to win it.

How does it happen that not every defensive player gets the call? "I don't know," said linebacker and defensive co-captain James Farrior. "We all have to be on the same page and relay the call across the board. That starts with me. I have to take responsibility for that."

You don't think Al Davis is enjoying this one, do you?

The fans were almost as bad as the Steelers' defense. Boos rained down when the Steelers fell behind, 13-10, early in the fourth quarter. Those turned to wild cheers when they took the lead, massive boos when they fell behind again and cheers when they regained the lead on a pass from Ben Roethlisberger to his best friend, Hines Ward, with 1:56 left. Guess what happened then? Thousands fled the premises, depriving the Steelers of much-needed crowd noise on that final drive.

The Steelers' kick-coverage team finally met a man it could tackle: Ex-Steelers plodder Gary Russell, who makes Najeh Davenport look like Devin Hester (although Russell did break off a 34-yarder).

OK, so where does this debacle rank among the most-galling losses of the decade? I put it first, just ahead of the 24-6 loss to the expansion Houston Texans in 2002 (the Steelers outgained the Texans, 422-47), the 20-13 loss at Oakland in 2006 and the ridiculous loss to the Chiefs two weeks ago. Special mention goes to the 6-0 loss to the New York Jets in 2003 at the Meadowlands, the day offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey ordered 38 passes in a blizzard. This beats Houston, because that game was a one-man meltdown featuring Tommy Maddox. This wasn't about turnovers. The Steelers just got beat, by a really bad team, on their home field, with their season on the line.

What a gutsy performance by Green Tree native Bruce Gradkowski, who took some massive hits but kept coming back for more. He made several mind-blowing throws off his back foot, under pressure, and badly fooled the Steelers all game with play fakes. In the fourth quarter, Gradkowski completed 10 of 17 passes for 190 yards, three touchdowns and a passer rating of 137. His rating in his previous visit to Heinz Field, last season as a member of the Cleveland Browns: 1.0.

Rookie cornerback Joe Burnett ought to fit right in with this group: He dropped a sure interception on the game-losing drive.

Joe Starkey can be reached at jstarkey@tribweb.com or 412-320-7810.

jjpro11
12-07-2009, 06:59 AM
let them boo.. they paid for their tickets to sit out in the feezing cold. to watch a team on a then 3 game losing streak let the Raiders stay in the game late and eventually win is inexcusable.

Steelers>NFL
12-07-2009, 07:59 AM
The Steelers are NOT a good football team this year.
From top to bottom, coaches to players. Everyone of them
did not show up this year. Sad, but true!

Edman
12-07-2009, 08:53 AM
I don't know what anyone else says. But what did the Steelers do to warrant any cheers yesterday? This joke of a defense deserved to be booed off the field after a putrid performance like that.

The fans believed in these guys, paid tickets out of their hard-earned money to sit in the cold and watch the Keystone Cops try to cover Lewis Freakin' Murphy.

Sorry, when I see a turd, I'll call it a turd. The Defense right now is just turd-y.

madtowndrunkard
12-07-2009, 09:27 AM
I don't know what anyone else says. But what did the Steelers do to warrant any cheers yesterday? This joke of a defense deserved to be booed off the field after a putrid performance like that.

The fans believed in these guys, paid tickets out of their hard-earned money to sit in the cold and watch the Keystone Cops try to cover Lewis Freakin' Murphy.

Sorry, when I see a turd, I'll call it a turd. The Defense right now is just turd-y.

I don't think the Defense cornered the market on looking like crap yesterday. Our offense managed 10 points through the first 3 quarters of that game....against the friggen Raiders. Not to mention some of the worst coaching / play calling I've seen in pittsburgh in a very very long time.

Fire Haley
12-07-2009, 09:31 AM
Yes - they do stink.

They are re-playing that last TD by Oakland like, 10,000 times, at least, on all the sports shows.

Horrible - Ike and 3 fat guys rushing while Harrison and Woodley drop back in coverage. Horrrible scheme.

They looked like complete idiots. 88 yards in less than two minutes.

steelerjim58
12-07-2009, 12:08 PM
Yes - they do stink.

They are re-playing that last TD by Oakland like, 10,000 times, at least, on all the sports shows.

Horrible - Ike and 3 fat guys rushing while Harrison and Woodley drop back in coverage. Horrrible scheme.

They looked like complete idiots. 88 yards in less than two minutes.

Careful around here it seems like if you point out how crazy it seems not to have Woodley and Harrison rushing the qb, you are making a great personal attack on Dick Lebeau.

Nadroj 20
12-07-2009, 12:10 PM
I don't think the Defense cornered the market on looking like crap yesterday. Our offense managed 10 points through the first 3 quarters of that game....against the friggen Raiders. Not to mention some of the worst coaching / play calling I've seen in pittsburgh in a very very long time.

:doh: The offense and playcalling you really think that was the problem? :doh:

Edman
12-07-2009, 12:37 PM
Yes - they do stink.

They are re-playing that last TD by Oakland like, 10,000 times, at least, on all the sports shows.

Horrible - Ike and 3 fat guys rushing while Harrison and Woodley drop back in coverage. Horrrible scheme.

They looked like complete idiots. 88 yards in less than two minutes.

Well, that's pretty what this team has become. A joke.

The 2009 Pittsburgh Steelers just stink.

casteeler
12-07-2009, 01:09 PM
i had to cover my head with my towel as 25 classless oakland raider fans kicked over tables and screamed during that putrid last drive came to an end. I couldn't even wave my towel like i expected .I can be sure that Bill Cower would have grabbed those def backs by the facemasks in the 4th qtr and told them to get their heads in the game or sit on the bench.