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mesaSteeler
12-22-2009, 06:21 AM
Steelers No. 1 rush defense -- ha-ha-ha
http://community.post-gazette.com/blogs/bobsmizik/archive/2009/12/21/steelers-no-1-rush-defense-ha-ha-ha.aspx
By Bob Smizik | Monday 9:50 a.m.

Nobody asked me, but . . .

* If ever there were a number that fell into the category of lies, damn lies and statistics, itís this one: The Steelers are still No. 1 in the NFL against the rush. What has to be understood is that doesnít mean they necessarily have a good rush defense. It means why would any team waste its time trying to run the ball when passing it is so much easier.

* The last time the Green Bay Packers scored as many as 36 points was in September against the awful St. Louis Rams. Which means theyíve now scored 36 points against two awful defenses.

* The game answered all questions about Tomlin and the locker room. No, he hasnít lost it and whether it is divided or not, that doesnít stop professionals from doing what they have to do -- most of the time.

* The game also answered all questions about which unit has most led to the downfall of the Super Bowl champs. Special team and offense are in the running, but defense wins easily.

* Iím not blaming defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau for this meltdown but itís his job to try and get it right. I like LeBeauís chances better than almost anyoneís to do that, but it doesnít mean it can be done.

* If anyone needs proof that execution trumps strategy they need only look at this game. Two of the reigning geniuses of the game -- LeBeau and Dom Capers -- were in charge of the defenses and there was nothing they could do stop the offenses, neither of which was previously distinguished.

* Criticisms of Mike Tomlin for publicly embarrassing his defense by calling for the on-sides kick are off target. A coach has to do what he feels gives his team the best chance to win. If that strategy embarrasses the defense, so be it.

* That said, I canít agree with the strategy. Roethlisberger saved Tomlin a heap of embarrassment and, considering some of the fan base, a play he would never live down.

* Question: If the Steelers could score 37 against the No. 2 defense in the NFL, how could they not get a touchdown against the No. 32 10 days earlier?

* Incredibly, after the Steelers scored 37 points, racked up over 500 yards and dominated time of possession, my e-mail bag still has criticism of Bruce Arians.

plenewken
12-22-2009, 07:05 AM
Steelers No. 1 rush defense -- ha-ha-ha
http://community.post-gazette.com/blogs/bobsmizik/archive/2009/12/21/steelers-no-1-rush-defense-ha-ha-ha.aspx
By Bob Smizik | Monday 9:50 a.m.

* If ever there were a number that fell into the category of lies, damn lies and statistics, itís this one: The Steelers are still No. 1 in the NFL against the rush. What has to be understood is that doesnít mean they necessarily have a good rush defense. It means why would any team waste its time trying to run the ball when passing it is so much easier.



Total offense and total defense are the 2 only meaningful measures of playing efficiency, in my opinion. Like Smizik pointed out, our pass defense is so awful that team don't even bother running the ball.
The Steelers are 15th in total offense and 10th in total defense.
For Special Teams, we are 20th in fewer number of punts, which is another measure of offensive efficiency.
By the way, we're also 28th in kicking, which is awful, giving up an average of 24.8yds per return and 4TDs.
To top it off, Reed is the shortest kicker of all NFL kickers with only 1 touch back in 67 kick-offs and an average of 60.5 yds per kick.

All these facts prove than we're an average team in all facets of the game this season and our 7-7 record is reflecting it perfectly.

steelerdave1969
12-22-2009, 08:04 AM
I have been a fan for atleast 30 years and I just dont understand how they could go get so bad in just a few weeks?.. Well it all started with the Steelers losing a very important piece of the LB corps when Larry Foote left to Detroit. Then we lose DE Aaron Smith for the season. Then his backup gets hurt and misses time, where is our no.1 pick Ziggy? Then one of the top S's in the biz has missed how many games... like 8 or more? William Gay in my opinion was truly not ready like I thought he was. I love Ryan Clark but without Troy Clark has proven he cant do it all by himself.. Clark brings it every game and hardly ever misses tackles, but Carter is a boy among men out there at times. He is a good player to come in in extra DB's when Troy is starting but he is Not a Starter.
When the Browns and Raiders bring 8 people on blitzes and Ben doesnt read it and get the ball out very quick or change the pass play to a run then there is no way that 5 is gonna block 8. I think alot more of the sacks are on Ben than on this line. I love My / Our Steelers, and these are just my opinions. But I also think that Rashard Mendenhall needs more than 11 carries per game, and I realize he had 7 receptions vs the Packers and I like that, but he needs 20 carries a game.

LamarrWoodleysFade
12-22-2009, 08:34 AM
I hate the fact that the two things Pittsburgh is known for, Running the football and a dominat defense, is so non-exsistant right now. It's almost depressing, in a way.

I don't care what happens after this season, next season we need to work on getting back to that...

X-Terminator
12-22-2009, 09:23 AM
* The game also answered all questions about which unit has most led to the downfall of the Super Bowl champs. Special team and offense are in the running, but defense wins easily.

Yes sir. But try explaining that to people who can't see the forest for the trees, and actually blame the offense for their failures.

* I’m not blaming defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau for this meltdown but it’s his job to try and get it right. I like LeBeau’s chances better than almost anyone’s to do that, but it doesn’t mean it can be done.

Nah, of course not. Thou shalt not question the great Dick LeBeau...even though his defense has done nothing to convince anyone that they can stop a team full of old grandmas, let alone an NFL offense.

(Just for the record, there's no question Papa LeBeau has earned his stature, but that still doesn't mean he's beyond criticism. After all, coaches should always take the blame for everything that goes wrong, right?)

* Criticisms of Mike Tomlin for publicly embarrassing his defense by calling for the on-sides kick are off target. A coach has to do what he feels gives his team the best chance to win. If that strategy embarrasses the defense, so be it.

* That said, I can’t agree with the strategy. Roethlisberger saved Tomlin a heap of embarrassment and, considering some of the fan base, a play he would never live down.

Agreed on both accounts.

* Incredibly, after the Steelers scored 37 points, racked up over 500 yards and dominated time of possession, my e-mail bag still has criticism of Bruce Arians.

Why is that incredible, Bob? You, of all people, should not be surprised one iota that you have such emails in your inbox. The offense can put up the same passing numbers against the Ravens next week AND rush for over 100 yards, and BA will never be given credit from the "we need a scapegoat every week" crowd...which makes up about 75% of The Nation.

Angus Burgher
12-22-2009, 09:39 AM
Yeah, I got into an argument with someone over this yesterday who criticized Tomlin for the onside kick call because he "publically snubbed LeBeau in favor of the talentless and predictable Arians."

I have news for people. Arians did his damned job Sunday. The offense put up 37 points, 560 yards, 7 scoring drives, 4 TDs and won the time of possession battle. What ELSE did they have to do? So they didn't utilize the run. Are you kidding me? Why does this matter if they're putting points on the board and using up time? They went with what was working. If you want to rail against Bruce for the Cleveland game, be my guest. But the reason Sunday's game was so close was because - once again - the defense SUCKED. Horribly.

Therefore, I don't blame Mike Tomlin for not trusting them in the last 3 minutes of the game. We trusted them against Oakland and look how well that turned out. His logic on that onside kick may have been a massive gamble, but at least in that game, I can certainly understand trusting your offense over your pathetic defense.

LukesDad88
12-22-2009, 09:49 AM
So Bruce had one game where his gamepllan worked out. Compare this weeks success with his decision to throw the ball over 40 times in the arctic conditions of Cleveland two weeks ago. That poor decision making was far too bad to be made up for by this weeks success.

BTW, If we could actually run the damn ball, we would use up alot more time off the clock, and not leaving our D in the position of having a 4th quarter collapse.

Sorry, but Bruce Arians can do alot of things well in prepping an offense, but he is not a good playcaller.

madtowndrunkard
12-22-2009, 09:53 AM
I think Bob is not giving GB the respect they deserve offensively.

Rogers is one of the best QBs in the league. That offense has been capable of putting up big points. The main thing holding them back this year was pass protection. GB's O-line has been playing much better as of late w/ the addition of Mark Taucher.

With the loss of Troy P and A. Smith on our defense it only makes sense to throw in the steelers. Yes our pass defense is bad. I think some of that has to do with the injuries. I also wonder if Tomlin has anything to do with it? When Tomlin was the D-coordinator in Minnesota they had the same issue.....they were dead last in the league against the pass. While we aren't what we used to be against the rush ...we still are not bad stopping the run and a team like GB with a great QB is going to throw the ball.

Like many other games this year lost is the fact that our defense did very well against that GB offense for 3 quarters. Once again they fell apart in the 4th. You have to wonder what the coaches are doing in the 4th. Is their approach different? Are we playing more "prevent" Are we becoming less aggressive w/ the play calls?

madtowndrunkard
12-22-2009, 09:56 AM
So Bruce had one game where his gamepllan worked out. Compare this weeks success with his decision to throw the ball over 40 times in the arctic conditions of Cleveland two weeks ago. That poor decision making was far too bad to be made up for by this weeks success.

BTW, If we could actually run the damn ball, we would use up alot more time off the clock, and not leaving our D in the position of having a 4th quarter collapse.

Sorry, but Bruce Arians can do alot of things well in prepping an offense, but he is not a good playcaller.



Yea, take this game plan of throwing the ball 90% of the time and you will lose alot of games. We are 7-7 against a very easy schedule. Our offense is not ranked among the best in terms of scoring....not even close. Given the talent we have that's ridiculous.

HometownGal
12-22-2009, 10:01 AM
Nah, of course not. Thou shalt not question the great Dick LeBeau...even though his defense has done nothing to convince anyone that they can stop a team full of old grandmas, let alone an NFL offense.

(Just for the record, there's no question Papa LeBeau has earned his stature, but that still doesn't mean he's beyond criticism. After all, coaches should always take the blame for everything that goes wrong, right?)



Absolutely Papa Lebeau has more than earned his stature and imho, is the best DC to ever hold that title in the NFL, but if, as we are supposed to believe around here, coaches are responsible for the play of those in their respective unit(s) and the "failure to adjust", he should be held liable for the D's dismal play this season. How ridiculous that sounds, eh? :banging:

HometownGal
12-22-2009, 10:04 AM
Yea, take this game plan of throwing the ball 90% of the time and you will lose alot of games. We are 7-7 against a very easy schedule. Our offense is not ranked among the best in terms of scoring....not even close. Given the talent we have that's ridiculous.

Had our D not squandered away leads in FOUR games this season that the O had secured, we'd be 11-3 right now, atop the AFCN and preparing for the playoffs instead of sitting at 7-7 and having our playoff hopes hanging by a hair. I can't believe some of you people are so blind. :banging:

Angus Burgher
12-22-2009, 10:08 AM
But... we just need to run the ball more!!!! :chuckle:

X-Terminator
12-22-2009, 10:19 AM
So Bruce had one game where his gamepllan worked out. Compare this weeks success with his decision to throw the ball over 40 times in the arctic conditions of Cleveland two weeks ago. That poor decision making was far too bad to be made up for by this weeks success.

BTW, If we could actually run the damn ball, we would use up alot more time off the clock, and not leaving our D in the position of having a 4th quarter collapse.

Sorry, but Bruce Arians can do alot of things well in prepping an offense, but he is not a good playcaller.

Um, they held the ball for over 35 minutes on Sunday, despite 52 pass attempts. They have also won the TOP battle in several of the games where the D blew leads in the 4th quarter. When you give up 36 points in under 25 minutes of game time, that usually means your D is giving up big plays with regularity. So you CANNOT use that as an excuse for the D's failures.

SteelGhost
12-22-2009, 10:23 AM
Maybe the scapegoat of the defense will be Ray Horton :noidea:

Nowadays the NFL has become a pass happy league and every team needs to have a good secondary, it's irrelevant having a No. 1 rush defense when your secondary unit looks like a giant gruyere cheese.

I expect they practice the "lost art" of tackling, that's another big weakness we can put on Horton's coaching, IMHO.

X-Terminator
12-22-2009, 10:26 AM
Absolutely Papa Lebeau has more than earned his stature and imho, is the best DC to ever hold that title in the NFL, but if, as we are supposed to believe around here, coaches are responsible for the play of those in their respective unit(s) and the "failure to adjust", he should be held liable for the D's dismal play this season. How ridiculous that sounds, eh? :banging:

That only applies to Bruce Arians. Didn't you get the memo? :wink02:

Anyway, the MO of opposing offenses has been to attack the D in the middle of the field. You'd think after several weeks of this happening that there would be adjustments made, but there really haven't been. If, as you say, we're led to believe that it's all about coaching, then yes, Lebeau has to be at fault. It won't happen though, because there's no consistency or fairness when it comes to Steelers' fans finger-pointing.

fansince'76
12-22-2009, 10:27 AM
Thou shalt not question the great Dick LeBeau...even though his defense has done nothing to convince anyone that they can stop a team full of old grandmas, let alone an NFL offense.

(Just for the record, there's no question Papa LeBeau has earned his stature, but that still doesn't mean he's beyond criticism. After all, coaches should always take the blame for everything that goes wrong, right?)

Nah - being made to look bad by such a lethal passing combo as Gradkowski-to-Murphy is absolutely no reason for concern or shame.

And speaking to the thread title - why run against us when we can be absolutely shredded by the pass?

SteelGhost
12-22-2009, 10:28 AM
That only applies to Bruce Arians. Didn't you get the memo? :wink02:

Anyway, the MO of opposing offenses has been to attack the D in the middle of the field. You'd think after several weeks of this happening that there would be adjustments made, but there really haven't been. If, as you say, we're led to believe that it's all about coaching, then yes, Lebeau has to be at fault. It won't happen though, because there's no consistency or fairness when it comes to Steelers' fans finger-pointing.

You nailed X-T :applaudit: :hatsoff:

X-Terminator
12-22-2009, 10:32 AM
Maybe the scapegoat of the defense will be Ray Horton :noidea:

Nowadays the NFL has become a pass happy league and every team needs to have a good secondary, it's irrelevant having a No. 1 rush defense when your secondary unit looks like a giant gruyere cheese.

I expect they practice the "lost art" of tackling, that's another big weakness we can put on Horton's coaching, IMHO.

Yeah, but the problem is that there is a dearth of talent in the secondary, especially at corner. So since there is a shortage of talent, you have to make up for it with fundamentals...and that is one area where you definitely can blame coaching, though effort also comes into play. The tackling this season has been abysmal, to say the least.

tony hipchest
12-22-2009, 10:33 AM
That only applies to Bruce Arians. Didn't you get the memo? :wink02:

Anyway, the MO of opposing offenses has been to attack the D in the middle of the field. You'd think after several weeks of this happening that there would be adjustments made, but there really haven't been. If, as you say, we're led to believe that it's all about coaching, then yes, Lebeau has to be at fault. It won't happen though, because there's no consistency or fairness when it comes to Steelers' fans finger-pointing.middle of field = polamalu territory.

adjusting for his absence is easier said than done. its easy to say it from a couch. its much more difficult to go out and make the plays that troy does. if nobody else in the nfl can do it, what makes fans think someone we scrape off the bench or the practice squad can?

troy matters. since the 80's, troy is in the same category as reggie white, lawrence taylor, deion sanders and rod woodson as far as gamechangers are concerned.

why are fans so afraid to aknowledge this?

* The last time the Green Bay Packers scored as many as 36 points was in September against the awful St. Louis Rams. Which means they’ve now scored 36 points against two awful defenses.

hey bob, thats nothing. the last time the steelers scored more than 38 points was in 2006 before arians became the coordinator. HA HA HA :dang:

SteelGhost
12-22-2009, 10:41 AM
Yeah, but the problem is that there is a dearth of talent in the secondary, especially at corner. So since there is a shortage of talent, you have to make up for it with fundamentals...and that is one area where you definitely can blame coaching, though effort also comes into play. The tackling this season has been abysmal, to say the least.

You are right, we need a decent corner badly :doh:, I expect the FO makes a good 2010 draft or good FA additions (I know it's not Rooney's style, buy it had worked great in the past ( Kevin Greene, Jerome Bettis, Tim Lester and James Farrior )

X-Terminator
12-22-2009, 10:42 AM
middle of field = polamalu territory.

adjusting for his absence is easier said than done. its easy to say it from a couch. its much more difficult to go out and make the plays that troy does. if nobody else in the nfl can do it, what makes fans think someone we scrape off the bench or the practice squad can?

troy matters. since the 80's, troy is in the same category as reggie white, lawrence taylor, deion sanders and rod woodson as far as gamechangers are concerned.

why are fans so afraid to aknowledge this?

Because it's just tough to believe that one man makes that much of a difference to a team. There's no question that Troy is great, probably the best player in the league when healthy, but this D should still be able to stop the likes of the Chiefs and Raiders without him. That said, Troy at 70% is still better than the stiffs we have patrolling the secondary right now. Hell, you could put four construction barrels out there and still do better.

Angus Burgher
12-22-2009, 10:46 AM
Um, they held the ball for over 35 minutes on Sunday, despite 52 pass attempts. They have also won the TOP battle in several of the games where the D blew leads in the 4th quarter. When you give up 36 points in under 25 minutes of game time, that usually means your D is giving up big plays with regularity. So you CANNOT use that as an excuse for the D's failures.

But see, you don't understand. We have to make sure that the offense is on the field for at least 45 minutes per game. After all, they're not allowed to get physically worn out. We only let defensive players get off with that excuse. They're the ones who are truly working hard. After all, once you miss a tackle, you have to continue running after the wide receiver. That can really wear you out when you do it 20 times or so in a game.

fansince'76
12-22-2009, 10:48 AM
After all, once you miss a tackle, you have to continue running after the wide receiver. That can really wear you out when you do it 20 times or so in a game.

True! As do half-hearted attempts to chase down WRs from behind on 40,50, and 60+ yard passes!

fansince'76
12-22-2009, 10:53 AM
Because it's just tough to believe that one man makes that much of a difference to a team. There's no question that Troy is great, probably the best player in the league when healthy, but this D should still be able to stop the likes of the Chiefs and Raiders without him.

This. We haven't exactly been facing the likes of Peyton Manning and Drew Brees every week. The secondary does not get a pass from me due to Troy being out.

tony hipchest
12-22-2009, 11:12 AM
Because it's just tough to believe that one man makes that much of a difference to a team. There's no question that Troy is great, probably the best player in the league when healthy, but this D should still be able to stop the likes of the Chiefs and Raiders without him. That said, Troy at 70% is still better than the stiffs we have patrolling the secondary right now. Hell, you could put four construction barrels out there and still do better.sure its tough to believe, but it is what it is. the proof is in the pudding. troy is EASILLY worth 3-7 points per game. past history proves that.

everyone says one man cant make the difference and they expect teams to simply adjust through fundamentals. according to all our resident defense bashers, if ben and hines are lost for the season, dixon and sweed should just step in and we see no drop off.

i have a hell of a lot more respect for lebeau and this defense than our under achieving offense. we have top 5 talent across the board, yet they barely do enough just to get by. last year when the offense was decimated with injuries (especially along the line) the defense sacked up and carried the entire team and played above their heads.

in 04 when we lost our qb and had to put in a rookie qb, our defense sacked up. why is it too much to ask the offense to carry the team? after all we swiched from our fathers steelers to a finesse offense that is supposed to be able to carry a team and score at will.

everyone wants to talk about the 4th quarter and even how last year in the sb our defense showed holes. but they conviniently forget the 1st 3 quarters where harrison reaturns a td 100 yds and our offense cant punch it in from 1st and goal at the 5.

i can admit that our defense has had some poor 4th quarters this season. it sure masks the stink our offense has put up in the first 3.

top 5 talent across the board and we only average 22 points a game. how could the ravens with no wr's. the dolphins with no qb, the titans with no wr's, and texans with no rb's be better?

defensive woes aside, that is a problem. we are 3rd in the league in ball control, 8th in yards, and 15th in points. this team hasnt scored more than 38 points under arians.

miller and holmes were the top in their draft class. holmes is top 5 in yards, ben and miller are top 5 in $$$. hines is a top wr. wallace is the top #3 wr in the league. mendenhall was regarded by some as the top rb in his class. 4/5 of our entire line has been paid for. moore looked to be a top 3rd down back in the league. willie is 2 years removed from being the league leader in rushing.

someone is not getting the most out of this talent. lebeau on the other hand is squeezing blood out of a turnip.

Edman
12-22-2009, 11:27 AM
I've been a staunch criticizer of Arians, especially last week, but his part still did his job. 503 yards of offense should be more than enough to win. Instead we win by one. Because once again, the Defense sucked ass in the 4th quarter. Tyrone Carter is on his way out in Pittsburgh. He's overmatched and outclassed.

It's Lebeau's turn to be put on notice this week.

fansince'76
12-22-2009, 11:33 AM
sure its tough to believe, but it is what it is. the proof is in the pudding. troy is EASILLY worth 3-7 points per game. past history proves that.

everyone says one man cant make the difference and they expect teams to simply adjust through fundamentals. according to all our resident defense bashers, if ben and hines are lost for the season, dixon and sweed should just step in and we see no drop off.

i have a hell of a lot more respect for lebeau and this defense than our under achieving offense. we have top 5 talent across the board, yet they barely do enough just to get by. last year when the offense was decimated with injuries (especially along the line) the defense sacked up and carried the entire team and played above their heads.

in 04 when we lost our qb and had to put in a rookie qb, our defense sacked up. why is it too much to ask the offense to carry the team? after all we swiched from our fathers steelers to a finesse offense that is supposed to be able to carry a team and score at will.

everyone wants to talk about the 4th quarter and even how last year in the sb our defense showed holes. but they conviniently forget the 1st 3 quarters where harrison reaturns a td 100 yds and our offense cant punch it in from 1st and goal at the 5.

i can admit that our defense has had some poor 4th quarters this season. it sure masks the stink our offense has put up in the first 3.

top 5 talent across the board and we only average 22 points a game. how could the ravens with no wr's. the dolphins with no qb, the titans with no wr's, and texans with no rb's be better?

defensive woes aside, that is a problem. we are 3rd in the league in ball control, 8th in yards, and 15th in points. this team hasnt scored more than 38 points under arians.

miller and holmes were the top in their draft class. holmes is top 5 in yards, ben and miller are top 5 in $$$. hines is a top wr. wallace is the top #3 wr in the league. mendenhall was regarded by some as the top rb in his class. 4/5 of our entire line has been paid for. moore looked to be a top 3rd down back in the league. willie is 2 years removed from being the league leader in rushing.

someone is not getting the most out of this talent. lebeau on the other hand is squeezing blood out of a turnip.

I see your point, but I'm hesitant to place the blame on Arians for Sweed's drop in the EZ against Cincy, Ward coughing up the ball inside the 5 against the Titans, and another potential TD bobbled by Heath Miller right into the hands of a KC defender in the red zone, among others. And Troy or no Troy, this D should not be getting lit up the way it has by scrubs like Bruce Gradkowski.

plenewken
12-22-2009, 12:22 PM
sure its tough to believe, but it is what it is. the proof is in the pudding. troy is EASILLY worth 3-7 points per game. past history proves that.

everyone says one man cant make the difference and they expect teams to simply adjust through fundamentals. according to all our resident defense bashers, if ben and hines are lost for the season, dixon and sweed should just step in and we see no drop off.

i have a hell of a lot more respect for lebeau and this defense than our under achieving offense. we have top 5 talent across the board, yet they barely do enough just to get by. last year when the offense was decimated with injuries (especially along the line) the defense sacked up and carried the entire team and played above their heads.

in 04 when we lost our qb and had to put in a rookie qb, our defense sacked up. why is it too much to ask the offense to carry the team? after all we swiched from our fathers steelers to a finesse offense that is supposed to be able to carry a team and score at will.

everyone wants to talk about the 4th quarter and even how last year in the sb our defense showed holes. but they conviniently forget the 1st 3 quarters where harrison reaturns a td 100 yds and our offense cant punch it in from 1st and goal at the 5.

i can admit that our defense has had some poor 4th quarters this season. it sure masks the stink our offense has put up in the first 3.

top 5 talent across the board and we only average 22 points a game. how could the ravens with no wr's. the dolphins with no qb, the titans with no wr's, and texans with no rb's be better?

defensive woes aside, that is a problem. we are 3rd in the league in ball control, 8th in yards, and 15th in points. this team hasnt scored more than 38 points under arians.

miller and holmes were the top in their draft class. holmes is top 5 in yards, ben and miller are top 5 in $$$. hines is a top wr. wallace is the top #3 wr in the league. mendenhall was regarded by some as the top rb in his class. 4/5 of our entire line has been paid for. moore looked to be a top 3rd down back in the league. willie is 2 years removed from being the league leader in rushing.

someone is not getting the most out of this talent. lebeau on the other hand is squeezing blood out of a turnip.

Awesome post. There not one point someone could argue with counter facts. Yes, our pass defense sucks, no question. Yes our defense coulnd't protect leads in the 4th quarter (by the way, small ones 90% of the time) but the reality is also that our offense is underachieving big time, considering the talent it has. I've failed to see them step up to the plate to make up for our defensive errors this year.
I will not count the number of games where our defense bailed out our offense in the last 5 years.
So guys, keep grasping at straws when our offense beats the Packers, if you want. I don't have your short memory and remember very well how bad it sucked against Cleveland 10 days ago.
I also remember our losses in OT when we won the toss and couldn't friggin' put points on the board against KC and Oakland. Is that the Defense's fault?
Kansas City itself scored 34 pts against Cleveland, that 28 friggin' points more than our own offense could score.

Again, I applaud you for your great post. Thank you, Sir.

fansince'76
12-22-2009, 12:27 PM
Awesome post. There not one point someone could argue with counter facts. Yes, our pass defense sucks, no question. Yes our defense coulnd't protect leads in the 4th quarter (by the way, small ones 90% of the time) but the reality is also that our offense is underachieving big time, considering the talent it has. I've failed to see them step up to the plate to make up for our defensive errors this year.
I will not count the number of games where our defense bailed out our offense in the last 5 years.
So guys, keep grasping at straws when our offense beats the Packers, if you want. I don't have your short memory and remember very well how bad it sucked against Cleveland 10 days ago.
I also remember our losses in OT when we won the toss and couldn't friggin' put points on the board against KC and Oakland. Is that the Defense's fault?
Kansas City itself scored 34 pts against Cleveland, that 28 friggin' points more than our own offense could score.

Again, I applaud you for your great post. Thank you, Sir.

Do you remember the SB where a 13-point 4th quarter lead and almost 300 passing yards were surrendered in a single quarter and it was put on our offense to win it? I do.

OX1947
12-22-2009, 12:36 PM
Do you remember the SB where a 13-point 4th quarter lead and almost 300 passing yards were surrendered in a single quarter and it was put on our offense to win it? I do.

You see, now thats what I have been saying all along. This reliquishing the lead in the last quarter did not start this year. it actually started in SB 43. Now, maybe Tomlin had reason for doing what he did in that game because Parker wasn't as healthy and Mendy was out. But now, he has a stud RB who can run AND catch passes in the backfield. USE HIM, when you have a lead. Run the clock. If you go 3 and out on run run pass, you kill 3 to 4 min. If you pass run pass, you probably kill 2 min. See the difference? And of course, if you get a few first downs, the time goes extremely fast when you keep running. If you dont believe me, go watch Bill Cowher's teams in his 15 years when they got 10 point leads or more late in the game. Other then 2 games in those 15 years, it was extremely successful AND Dominant.

plenewken
12-22-2009, 12:45 PM
Do you remember the SB where a 13-point 4th quarter lead and almost 300 passing yards were surrendered in a single quarter and it was put on our offense to win it? I do.

I remember very well too.

Our 13 pts lead was the result of 20pts for us vs. 7 for AZ. Out of the 20pts, 13 came from 2 FGs and a defensive INT. Oh and the offense cost us a safety in the 4th Q. too.
How's that for a stellar offensive performance?

Besides Harrison's TD, don't forget that our D stopped AZ when they intercepted Ben and they also forced a fumble on Warner at the very end.

fansince'76
12-22-2009, 12:47 PM
I remember very well too.

Our 13 pts lead was the result of 20pts for us vs. 7 for AZ. Out of the 20pts, 13 of came from 2 FGs and a defensive INT. Not really an offensive showdown.
Oh and the offense cost us a safety in the 4th Q. too. How's that for a stellar performance?

Besides Harrison's TD, don't forget that our D stopped AZ when they intercepted Ben and they also forced a fumble on Warner at the very end.

Yeah, a D that can make a stop. I remember that well too. Point is, the offense made it count when it had to in that game and in the Packers game. Please remind me again what our defense did with 2 minutes on the clock, 90 yards of field to defend, and a 4-point lead against the Raiders this season, for one example?

plenewken
12-22-2009, 12:57 PM
Yeah, a D that can make a stop. I remember that well too. Point is, the offense made it count when it had to in that game and in the Packers game. Please remind me again what our defense did with 2 minutes on the clock, 90 yards of field to defend, and a 4-point lead against the Raiders this season, for one example?


Yeah, a 4pts lead, you said it, not me, A 4pts lead against the Raiders is what I'm talking about. I call it pathetic, how do you call it yourself? A great performance?

fansince'76
12-22-2009, 01:05 PM
Yeah, a 4pts lead, you said it, not me, A 4pts lead against the Raiders is what I'm talking about. I call it pathetic, how do you call it yourself? A great performance?

I call it a "should have been a sustainable lead," considering the competition. Wasn't the offense that let Gradkowski and company score 3 TDs inside of 8 minutes.

pepsyman1
12-22-2009, 01:12 PM
Gang...I'm gonna sum it up this way:
Overall, most of us aren't happy with the teams performance as a whole right now...whether or not you are on or off the Arians train (I'm off) and whether or not you want to criticize Dick LeBeau's defense this year (I do)....the reality is that we simply haven't been all that good on either side of the ball. Yardage wise on both sides of the ball this team looks respectable on paper....but the reality is the final number on the scoreboard. The 2005 team that was only a wildcard team averaged 2 points more per game even with Cowher's conservative approach and the defense gave up 4 points per game less. There are all kinds of theories of how the offense might have helped that defense in its approach...which may or may not be true. The reality is we need to be better on both sides of the ball. Whether Arians is here or not, we need better balance...the last two games show what can go right and what can go wrong with our current offensive approach. We definitely have the talent to have a balanced attack that can take whatever the offense gives...run or pass (which is something that Cowher's teams rarely had) On defense, we need better secondary personnel...period. Even playing soft on the corners isn't keeping these guys from giving up big plays (which is the whole point of that approach)...I'd rather see more bump and run or just some tight man coverage in general on plays where we blitz, but I will leave it to the guru to figure it out. Either way, we need work on either side of the ball.....and a kickoff or two in the endzone wouldn't hurt either.

plenewken
12-22-2009, 01:31 PM
Gang...I'm gonna sum it up this way:
Overall, most of us aren't happy with the teams performance as a whole right now...whether or not you are on or off the Arians train (I'm off) and whether or not you want to criticize Dick LeBeau's defense this year (I do)....the reality is that we simply haven't been all that good on either side of the ball. Yardage wise on both sides of the ball this team looks respectable on paper....but the reality is the final number on the scoreboard. The 2005 team that was only a wildcard team averaged 2 points more per game even with Cowher's conservative approach and the defense gave up 4 points per game less. There are all kinds of theories of how the offense might have helped that defense in its approach...which may or may not be true. The reality is we need to be better on both sides of the ball. Whether Arians is here or not, we need better balance...the last two games show what can go right and what can go wrong with our current offensive approach. We definitely have the talent to have a balanced attack that can take whatever the offense gives...run or pass (which is something that Cowher's teams rarely had) On defense, we need better secondary personnel...period. Even playing soft on the corners isn't keeping these guys from giving up big plays (which is the whole point of that approach)...I'd rather see more bump and run or just some tight man coverage in general on plays where we blitz, but I will leave it to the guru to figure it out. Either way, we need work on either side of the ball.....and a kickoff or two in the endzone wouldn't hurt either.

You summed it up perfectly: "the reality is that we simply haven't been all that good on either side of the ball".

plenewken
12-22-2009, 01:55 PM
I call it a "should have been a sustainable lead," considering the competition. Wasn't the offense that let Gradkowski and company score 3 TDs inside of 8 minutes.

Last time I checked, the opponent's players are paid to put points on the board too and that's what they do. It is unrealistic to expect our defense to shut down the opponent. What more realistic is to expect our offense not to leave as many points on the field as they've been doing on a regular basis.
Our redzone offense has been ineffective, our 3rd down conversion ratio is poor, and the number of sacks taken by Ben is too high. Ben has been sacked 43 times so far this season which puts him third to last in the league. (Manning 10 sacks, Brady 16)
You can blame our defense for letting the opponent score too many points at the end and I agree with you.
But I will still put more blame on the offense because they don't have key injuries like the defense has and they have consistently underperformed.

X-Terminator
12-22-2009, 04:33 PM
sure its tough to believe, but it is what it is. the proof is in the pudding. troy is EASILLY worth 3-7 points per game. past history proves that.

everyone says one man cant make the difference and they expect teams to simply adjust through fundamentals. according to all our resident defense bashers, if ben and hines are lost for the season, dixon and sweed should just step in and we see no drop off.

i have a hell of a lot more respect for lebeau and this defense than our under achieving offense. we have top 5 talent across the board, yet they barely do enough just to get by. last year when the offense was decimated with injuries (especially along the line) the defense sacked up and carried the entire team and played above their heads.

in 04 when we lost our qb and had to put in a rookie qb, our defense sacked up. why is it too much to ask the offense to carry the team? after all we swiched from our fathers steelers to a finesse offense that is supposed to be able to carry a team and score at will.

everyone wants to talk about the 4th quarter and even how last year in the sb our defense showed holes. but they conviniently forget the 1st 3 quarters where harrison reaturns a td 100 yds and our offense cant punch it in from 1st and goal at the 5.

i can admit that our defense has had some poor 4th quarters this season. it sure masks the stink our offense has put up in the first 3.

top 5 talent across the board and we only average 22 points a game. how could the ravens with no wr's. the dolphins with no qb, the titans with no wr's, and texans with no rb's be better?

defensive woes aside, that is a problem. we are 3rd in the league in ball control, 8th in yards, and 15th in points. this team hasnt scored more than 38 points under arians.

miller and holmes were the top in their draft class. holmes is top 5 in yards, ben and miller are top 5 in $$$. hines is a top wr. wallace is the top #3 wr in the league. mendenhall was regarded by some as the top rb in his class. 4/5 of our entire line has been paid for. moore looked to be a top 3rd down back in the league. willie is 2 years removed from being the league leader in rushing.

someone is not getting the most out of this talent. lebeau on the other hand is squeezing blood out of a turnip.

Good points, all. I'll admit that the offense has underachieved and I've blamed that on our red zone inefficiency. I have repeatedly criticized Arians for his red zone playcalling - it really hasn't been good all 3 seasons he's been the OC. But I still refuse to blame them for the defense constantly blowing leads. Regardless of how many points the offense puts up or how big the lead is in the 4th Q, a supposed championship defense should still be able to close out opponents, especially the dregs of the league. If you (general "you") want to give them a free pass for that and pass the buck, fine. I will not.

Preacher
12-22-2009, 04:37 PM
So Bruce had one game where his gamepllan worked out. Compare this weeks success with his decision to throw the ball over 40 times in the arctic conditions of Cleveland two weeks ago. That poor decision making was far too bad to be made up for by this weeks success.

BTW, If we could actually run the damn ball, we would use up alot more time off the clock, and not leaving our D in the position of having a 4th quarter collapse.

Sorry, but Bruce Arians can do alot of things well in prepping an offense, but he is not a good playcaller.
:rofl:

So the defense's failure in the fourth quarter is Arians fault?

Wow.

BTW, had we take time off the clock by running the ball.. say, oh about 2 or 3 more minutes, that means we would have LOST THE GAME, as the Packers would have scored on their last drive.... AGAIN.

SteelerEmpire
12-22-2009, 04:42 PM
Steelers No. 1 rush defense -- ha-ha-ha

* Question: If the Steelers could score 37 against the No. 2 defense in the NFL, how could they not get a touchdown against the No. 32 10 days earlier?


Amen....Ha Ha... that's Steeler football.... always an adventure....

HometownGal
12-22-2009, 09:28 PM
Regardless of how many points the offense puts up or how big the lead is in the 4th Q, a supposed championship defense should still be able to close out opponents, especially the dregs of the league. If you (general "you") want to give them a free pass for that and pass the buck, fine. I will not.

:applaudit::thumbsup::applaudit:

Doesn't matter if you win by 4 or by 44 - a win is a win is a win and wins are a factor in getting into the playoffs.

Steelerfreak58
12-22-2009, 09:50 PM
Amen....Ha Ha... that's Steeler football.... always an adventure....

More stumble and bumble football by our beloved team. Once again playing down to the level of other teams instead of obliterating the bottom of the barrel teams. Its been this way for a looooooooooooooooooong time now.

tony hipchest
12-22-2009, 10:30 PM
Good points, all. I'll admit that the offense has underachieved and I've blamed that on our red zone inefficiency. I have repeatedly criticized Arians for his red zone playcalling - it really hasn't been good all 3 seasons he's been the OC. But I still refuse to blame them for the defense constantly blowing leads. Regardless of how many points the offense puts up or how big the lead is in the 4th Q, a supposed championship defense should still be able to close out opponents, especially the dregs of the league. If you (general "you") want to give them a free pass for that and pass the buck, fine. I will not.they dont get a free pass. i will readilly admit that the loss to smith and troy to our defense is devestating and vitually insurmountable. they are the lynchpins. harrison is also irreplaceable, but if he were to go down i would feel comfortable with timmons taking his place and fox filling in the middle. hampton is a key cog, but we have already seen what hoke can do.

i believe that a supposed championship offense should be able to do EXACTLY what the steelers showed they are capable of on sunday. it has long been tomlins and arians vision to offensively be able to morph into a passing game or running game (depending on matchups and taking what the defense gives) like the patriots did in their hey day.

there is absolutely no reason the browns rb can run for 289 yds on the chiefs and we cant. there is no reason rashard cant run 145 yds on the browns and we cant (we saw it several years ago when willie ran roughshod on the browns).

there is also no reason why the steelers cant pass for 500 yds and put the ball in bens (and our spectacular receivers) hands when needed... as seen vs. green bay and az in the sb.

all i ask is for the offense to call games accordingly and not get too cute. there is a reason we have our best games against the strongest opponents and typically shit the bed vs the dregs.

things seem forced vs the weaker opponents. as opposed to letting the game come to them and just playing steelers football, it seems that they are striving for numbers and style points which is contrary to the head coaches entire philosophy.

the defense is having a down year. i admit that and perhaps they have earned it. im not superstitious but i cringed the moment troy was anounced to be on the madden cover... not because i believe in a curse, but because i hated to think about the drop off if he were lost for the season.

to be a championship team the offens has got to be able to rise up and carry the weight, just like the defense did last season. its no free ride. even farrior sounded pissed after hines said it was over after the oakland game.

if the steelers could be ranked 3rd overall in offense in '01 with kordell at the helm, i definitely expect the world out of this squad.

i already know what this defense can do with smith and troy out there on the field.

on sunday, i finally caught a glimpse of what this offense is capable of with all healthy starters playing (kemo notwithstanding).

zulater
12-22-2009, 10:31 PM
Had our D not squandered away leads in FOUR games this season that the O had secured, we'd be 11-3 right now, atop the AFCN and preparing for the playoffs instead of sitting at 7-7 and having our playoff hopes hanging by a hair. I can't believe some of you people are so blind. :banging:

http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/schedule?team=PIT

Or another way of looking at it is the offense's inadequecy lost us at least three games ( Bears 14 points, 2nd Bengals game 18 points, 2nd Browns game 6 points) Also the offense deserves at least equal blame for the Chiefs loss being as the offense handed the Chiefs 10 points off turnovers, which is the same number of points the defense gave up all game. ( with special teams giving up the final 7 of the 27 points scored by the Chiefs)

In my opinion the defense held up their end in all but four games. That's not to say they were up to the standards they've set in recent years. But I think it's a bit over the top to say the defense is the reason this team isn't currently 11-3.

tony hipchest
12-22-2009, 10:36 PM
http://www.nfl.com/teams/pittsburghsteelers/schedule?team=PIT

Or another way of looking at it is the offense's inadequecy lost us three games ( Bears 14 points, 2nd Bengals game 18 points, 2nd Browns game 6 points) Also the offense deserves at least equal lbame for the Chiefs loss being as the offense handed the Chiefs 10 points off turnovers, which is the same number of points the defense gave up all game. ( with special teams giving up the final 7 of the 27 points scored by the Chiefs)

In my opinion the defense held up their end in all but five games. That's not to say they were up to the standards they've set in recent years. But I think it's a bit over the top to say the defense is the reason this team isn't currently 11-3.

:applaudit::hatsoff::applaudit:

its embarrassing our offense only averages 22 points a game. even moreso, when looking at the horrid point totals listed above.

or does the 'braintrust" contend that we dont have top 5 offensive talent?

zulater
12-22-2009, 10:48 PM
Everyone's played their part in this lousy season. The special teams have sucked the life out of this team more than once. The offense and defense certainly take their turns playing the role of Barney Fife. The coaches make their share of head scratching decisions. ( no more 53 yard fg attempts please coach :doh:) Bad luck has certainly played a role ( Janakowski's wind blown fg anyone? :dang: ) onward and downward and so it goes. Maybe this is just the payoff for all the good fortune we had on the way to last year's SB? :noidea:

But to the point that Arains is unfairly singled out. There's some truth to that, no doubt. But what do you expect? LeBeau's virtually a Saint, plus he's got so much equity already in the vault it's hard to go too hard on him. Plus he's lost his best defensive back and his best defensive linemen for the majority of the season. Those two are the glue that held it all together. So he gets somewhat of a pass.

Stlrs4Life
12-23-2009, 11:25 AM
I have been a fan for atleast 30 years and I just dont understand how they could go get so bad in just a few weeks?.. Well it all started with the Steelers losing a very important piece of the LB corps when Larry Foote left to Detroit. Then we lose DE Aaron Smith for the season. Then his backup gets hurt and misses time, where is our no.1 pick Ziggy? Then one of the top S's in the biz has missed how many games... like 8 or more? William Gay in my opinion was truly not ready like I thought he was. I love Ryan Clark but without Troy Clark has proven he cant do it all by himself.. Clark brings it every game and hardly ever misses tackles, but Carter is a boy among men out there at times. He is a good player to come in in extra DB's when Troy is starting but he is Not a Starter.
When the Browns and Raiders bring 8 people on blitzes and Ben doesnt read it and get the ball out very quick or change the pass play to a run then there is no way that 5 is gonna block 8. I think alot more of the sacks are on Ben than on this line. I love My / Our Steelers, and these are just my opinions. But I also think that Rashard Mendenhall needs more than 11 carries per game, and I realize he had 7 receptions vs the Packers and I like that, but he needs 20 carries a game.


Exactly! I agree on all.

markymarc
12-23-2009, 12:31 PM
Bob's articles always make me laugh. This is the same clown who wrote an article last week defending Bruce Arians and of course threw out stats, but forgot the most important offensive stat out there and that would be scoring. After the Packers performance the Steelers actually moved up to #15 in the rankings now.

We still have a top ten offense and yet can only be average among all NFL teams when it comes to scoring.

This is just another way for Bob trying to take heat off Bruce Arians and the offense. I applaud Bruce Arians and the entire offense for their performance on Sunday. I also realize the defense must shoulder a lot of the blame for our losses this season, but IMO Bruce Arians is still part of the problem.

GoSlash27
12-23-2009, 01:07 PM
the way I see it, it's a combination of 2 factors: lack of pressure and fundamental lapses in execution. Both are fatal to our style of D.
The poor fundamental play needs to be rectified in a hurry. As long as it continues, there's no hope of pressuring opposing QB. Without that pressure, our secondary is going to get picked apart just like we've been seeing.

It's Ray Horton's job to sort out the fundamental problems. Shedding blocks, proper positioning, tackling, etc.

tony hipchest
12-23-2009, 08:24 PM
the way I see it, it's a combination of 2 factors: lack of pressure and fundamental lapses in execution. Both are fatal to our style of D.
The poor fundamental play needs to be rectified in a hurry. As long as it continues, there's no hope of pressuring opposing QB. Without that pressure, our secondary is going to get picked apart just like we've been seeing.

It's Ray Horton's job to sort out the fundamental problems. Shedding blocks, proper positioning, tackling, etc.

you do realize we are 2nd in the league with 40 sacks right? not quite on last years pace, but not too far behind.

Preacher
12-23-2009, 08:37 PM
I find it constantly amazing that not one person has addressed the fact that last year, in the playoffs, WITH TROY and AARON,

We just about blew all three games in the fourth quarter.

I don't care if our offense scores 2 points or 202 points. Our defense ALSO HAS PROBLEMS.

tony hipchest
12-23-2009, 09:26 PM
I find it constantly amazing that not one person has addressed the fact that last year, in the playoffs, WITH TROY and AARON,

We just about blew all three games in the fourth quarter.

I don't care if our offense scores 2 points or 202 points. Our defense ALSO HAS PROBLEMS.i find it a point hardly worth addressing. infact i think you are grasping at straws and seeing something that really isnt there.

perhaps you would like to elaborate with a game by game analysis.

the steelers absolutely destroyed the chargers. they held the ball, all but 2 or 3 seconds of the ENTIRE 3rd quarter. with the halftime the defense barely even saw the field for an hour until the 4th quarter.

you must have missed the entire 4th quarter of the AFCCG vs the ravens. troy picked off a ball and ran it in for a touchdown. clark iced the game by putting willis into the hospital and forcing a turnover.

as for the superbowl, the NFC champs get paid too. they showed the fight every conference champion should show. kurt warner and larry fitzgerald are no slouches. nobody knows lebeau or his defense like ken wiz. the perfect call was called at the perfect time. both plays were inches from being shut down.

dont forget, a league and sb mvp had the ball in his hands last with plenty of time to drive tha ball for another game winning drive. if our defense was so suspect, why didnt they just dial up the same play that scored them their previous td?

woodley caused a sack and a turnover. our defense put it away.

you get too hung up on the 4th quarter. the first 3 quarters are just as important. the first quarter of a season is just as important as the final 4 games (our losses to the bears and bungles are proof of that).

what disturbs me about the superbowl is that we were only capable of scoring 1 offensive td through the first 59 minutes of play.

even the 05 steelers, with ben having one of his worst career games ever, were able to muster up 3 offensive td's.

:hunch:

arians apologists are taking it to new levels when they try to find fault and flaws with LAST YEARS DEFENSE.

bu.. bu.. bu.. last years defense. :doh: oh how soon you forget james harrisons 100 yd td interception and return.

unbelievable.

steeltheone
12-23-2009, 09:54 PM
I have been a fan for atleast 30 years and I just dont understand how they could go get so bad in just a few weeks?.. Well it all started with the Steelers losing a very important piece of the LB corps when Larry Foote left to Detroit. Then we lose DE Aaron Smith for the season. Then his backup gets hurt and misses time, where is our no.1 pick Ziggy? Then one of the top S's in the biz has missed how many games... like 8 or more? William Gay in my opinion was truly not ready like I thought he was. I love Ryan Clark but without Troy Clark has proven he cant do it all by himself.. Clark brings it every game and hardly ever misses tackles, but Carter is a boy among men out there at times. He is a good player to come in in extra DB's when Troy is starting but he is Not a Starter.
When the Browns and Raiders bring 8 people on blitzes and Ben doesnt read it and get the ball out very quick or change the pass play to a run then there is no way that 5 is gonna block 8. I think alot more of the sacks are on Ben than on this line. I love My / Our Steelers, and these are just my opinions. But I also think that Rashard Mendenhall needs more than 11 carries per game, and I realize he had 7 receptions vs the Packers and I like that, but he needs 20 carries a game.Larry Foote are you serious? We let ourselfs get to old op front. Smith and Farrior need cut.

tony hipchest
12-23-2009, 10:00 PM
smith needs cut? :screwy:

i sure hope youre talking about anthony smith who was already let go after last season.