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mesaSteeler
04-10-2011, 10:34 AM
On the Steelers: Roethlisberger, Arian still thinking pass
Sunday, April 10, 2011
By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11100/1138301-66.stm#ixzz1J8Avz0Nf

They think alike, Ben Roethlisberger and his offensive coordinator. So much so, the quarterback says, that both he and Bruce Arians wanted to pass more than they did during the 2010 season but did not for similar reasons -- pressure from others to run more often.

"If he were, I don't want to say 'allowed,' but his preference would be to throw the ball more, use the weapons we have and throw it," Roethlisberger said in an interview this past week with the Post-Gazette, his first since the Super Bowl. "Mine's the same way.

"But we both think the same in the no-huddle, that we call a lot more runs because we know that's what we're supposed to do. And I don't know if that's 'supposed to' from the fans, the media, the owner, who knows? But it's just a feeling that you have that we better run the ball some. So we do think alike in a lot of those ways."

Some fans and media often complain that the Steelers do not run the ball enough, even though statistically they've been one of the most run-oriented teams in the league through the years. It came to a head in January 2010 when Steelers President Art Rooney II expressed the same sentiments in an interview with the Post-Gazette and included coach Mike Tomlin as being on board with that philosophy.

"I think Mike and I certainly agreed coming off the season that we need to run the ball more consistently to get to where we want to get to," Rooney said. "So that's part of the thinking in the offseason: We need to figure out how to get better running the football.''

The Steelers ran 47.4 percent of the time in 2010 compared with 42.2 the previous season. They increased their rushing yards to 1,924 from 1,793, but their average dipped to 4.1 from 4.2 and their average gain on all plays decreased to 5.6 from 5.9 in 2009. They scored 375 points last season, seven more than in 2009. And, of course, they reached the Super Bowl last season while missing the playoffs in 2009 with a 9-7 record.

Arians' contract expired after the 2010 season, and, after speculation on whether he would return or not, he signed a one-year deal to coach the offense for a fifth season with the Steelers, eighth as an assistant coach with the team.

Roethlisberger was delighted to see him return.

"Obviously, a lot of negative things are said about Bruce. But not from me. I really respect Bruce. We have a great relationship. I know he'll be gone at some point pretty soon. It's just the nature of the beast. I was nervous about it being this year ...

"I was telling him, 'BA, I know you want to leave in part because you can retire, you can. Two, you want to leave because you're tired of all the crap you have to deal with. But I know that we're so young and talented on this offense, that intrigues you a lot.' And he said, 'You know you're exactly right.' It does intrigue him. So I am very glad he's back."

Roethlisberger said it's not as if he and Arians don't want to run the ball.

"It's funny because we'll go into some games with the intent of running the ball and establishing it because you do need to run the ball -- I'm not saying you should never run the ball. We do go in and establish that we have to run. But it's funny, it'll be like the fourth quarter and we'll be down or something and Mike will come to me and BA and be like, 'OK, have at it, start throwing the ball.' It's like 'all right it's yours' and usually we go out and throw the ball and win the game.

"Who knows what it is? That's part of the politics probably in coaching, which is why I'm not a coach. I'm just a player. I do what I'm told."

Among other topics Roethlisberger discussed in the interview:

• "I enjoy the no-huddle offense. Those are the times I call the plays and go on the sideline and talk to BA. Last year, I didn't think we did it enough. The year before, I thought we did a lot of it. For whatever reason, maybe it was because we had so many young guys ... I think this year we'll be a lot better at it and do it a lot more."

• On the lockout by the owners: "Drew Brees I think said it the best -- it's not really affecting him as much as it affects players who came before him and after him. That's so well said I think I'm going to start saying it.

"I just hope the leaders on both sides find a way to get the most popular sport in America back going. And I hope it's fair for both sides. People ask when I think it will get done. I have no clue."

• He plans to work with his receivers and perhaps some rookies if the lockout continues. They will move around to various sites where the players live in the offseason.

"I've been in contact with them ... just to let them know if this thing keeps going, be ready at the end of April, first of May, we're going to get together and just throw, catch up and keep fresh. Nothing crazy."

• On whether new rules to keep the game safe might reduce his effectiveness if the officials blow an early whistle when a defender has him in the grasp:

"They don't blow many whistles against me, it doesn't seem like. People ask me all the time: What do you think of the no-calls? I really don't complain too much for that reason, I don't want them to blow the whistle too much if I'm going to make a play. I think that there's still a line that has to be crossed with blatantly late hits and stuff like that -- I don't think they ever called anything in my favor last year.

"I don't like to complain much or make excuses. They want to protect guys -- Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Drew Brees, those kinds of guys. Because in all seriousness -- and in no way do I hope anybody takes offense who reads this for the rest of the Colts, Patriots and Saints -- but nobody wants to watch the Indianapolis Colts if Peyton Manning's not playing, nobody wants to watch the Patriots if Tom Brady's not playing. If the backups are in there, they don't want to watch that game; they want to watch Peyton and Tom."

• On what the Steelers offense needs from the draft.

"We have a good group of young guys. We have a few older guys, but, if you think, for the most part we're a good, young group. So I think the biggest thing is to get depth at each spot. If you look at the line, we have to get depth there.

"The receivers, we have a great young group. Hines [Ward] is there, and he's going to keep leading these guys. I think if he stays healthy, he's going to keep doing what he does. But we still have to bring in depth there, too, because at some point Hines will retire -- I don't know when, but I assume he's going to retire at some point. He's been doing it for a long time.

"Just add depth. Every spot you can go, even at running back we can add depth."

• His impressions of Ward competing on "Dancing With the Stars":

"I was shocked because even he'll admit and has admitted to us that he has no rhythm and can't dance but, obviously, he's doing great. I joke with him and say it's just a popularity contest, it has nothing to do with how good you can dance.

"Because his smile is contagious and he has so much charisma and he's a Steeler and it's football and they go so far, my bet is he'll be in the finals and it depends on who he's against if he wins. But I think he has a good chance of winning."
Ed Bouchette: ebouchette@post-gazette.com. Follow him on Twitter @EdBouchette.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/11100/1138301-66.stm#ixzz1J8AMG7kr

MACH1
04-11-2011, 12:07 AM
Roethlisberger said it's not as if he and Arians don't want to run the ball.

Only cause the bossman told them to run it. :doh:

Neil-Still-Rules-14
04-11-2011, 01:26 AM
I'm tired of hearing about "Steelers Football"...this should be a pass-first offense.

steelerjim58
04-11-2011, 01:51 AM
I'm tired of hearing about "Steelers Football"...this should be a pass-first offense.

Amen brother. I want to see 35+ passes a game.

pete74
04-11-2011, 06:03 AM
i just want to win. it would be mice to be balanced but we didnt do very well running last season, mendenhalls ypc was lower then it should of been. if we cant run well then air it out every down. i really dont care what we do as long as we win

Atlanta Dan
04-11-2011, 08:18 AM
With regard to passing more, Peter King agrees in his MMQB column today with Roethlisberger's comments


I think I couldn't agree more with Ben Roethlisberger. In his interview with Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Roethlisberger said he wished he could have thrown downfield more than the Steelers did. I kept looking at Pittsburgh late in the year, when rookie burner Antonio Brown got to know the offense and was the kind of outside receiver who could be bookended with Mike Wallace to seriously stretch the defense, and wondered why the Steelers didn't do more of it. Wallace needs to be more of a weapon than he was in 2010. It's simple. That has to happen for this offense to reach its potential.

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2011/writers/peter_king/04/10/mmqb/3.html

OTOH there was this observation in the NYT Fifth Down blog after the loss to the Packers

Did Steelers Miss Chance to Run to a Title?

Pittsburgh’s final rushing totals — 23 attempts for 126 yards (5.5 yard average) and a TD — were good. But they could have been great, and could have led to a seventh Steelers championship.

http://fifthdown.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/02/08/did-steelers-miss-chance-to-run-to-a-title/
.

Fire Arians
04-11-2011, 11:21 AM
it's good to be balanced. to be honest though I think if the running game is working then we need to pound the rock.

MACH1
04-11-2011, 12:29 PM
3rd n 1, 5 wide ring a bell anyone?

Atlanta Dan
04-11-2011, 01:11 PM
3rd n 1, 5 wide ring a bell anyone?

Yep - pretty clear the QB has no problem with that formation for that down & distance:banging:

Do not underestimate 2010 not being a repeat of 2009 because Roethlisberger needed to keep quiet after Milledgeville and could not rally behind Blame Someone Else Bruce

Given his less than stellar performance in Dallas (2 picks/overthrowing a wide open Wallace in the third quarter/a sorry last drive that pretty much consisted of forcing the ball to Wallace) I am somewhat surprised #7 is back to pushing for more passing

harrison'samonster
04-11-2011, 03:37 PM
I'm tired of hearing about "Steelers Football" too, but if that's what it takes to win, then I'm all for it. Especially by the time playoffs role around, a team needs to be balanced. If we don't have a good running game to keep defenses honest, Ben might get touched on every play.
I think Roethlisberger and Arians should be more concerned about finding effective passing plays, and not worry so much about the pass count.

SH-Rock
04-11-2011, 07:35 PM
Amen brother. I want to see 35+ passes a game.

Ben is not as pretty as Brady or Manning to throw 35+ passes a game. We need a pocket passer for that.

vasteeler
04-11-2011, 08:22 PM
Ben is not as pretty as Brady or Manning to throw 35+ passes a game. We need a pocket passer for that.

whose to say Ben isn't a pocket passer, hell he's been running for his life since day one. if Ben had consistent blocking we would see a different Ben. its kind of hard to be a pocket qb when you have people on you the instant you drop back.

tony hipchest
04-11-2011, 08:58 PM
its great to see bruce arians finally decided to STFU for this article.

im not so sure about him naming ben his official spokesman though....

SH-Rock
04-12-2011, 05:03 PM
whose to say Ben isn't a pocket passer, hell he's been running for his life since day one. if Ben had consistent blocking we would see a different Ben. its kind of hard to be a pocket qb when you have people on you the instant you drop back.

Yeah I agree, but when Ben does have a perfect pocket he tends to hold the ball for way longer than he's suppose to and then he's either on the run or gets sacked.