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View Full Version : Are the Steelers better or worse than last year?


CTFan
09-04-2011, 05:32 PM
Hi everyone, I'm new here, I'm also a Ravens fan. But it gets worse, because I'm a UConn basketball fan too. I get to enjoy the best rivalry in the NFL and in CBB. But I'm not a troll.

Our fans think we've improved our roster a lot from last year. Sure, we lost Mason and Heap, but they were on the downward slope. Far down it in my opinion. We think our OL is lots better, Evans finally gives us a deep threat, we think (hope) our pass rush is better, and we've got the best FB in the league.

What I'd like to know is how you guys view your team's makeup compared to last year's?

Thanks

DanRooney
09-04-2011, 05:39 PM
They're exactly the same. We didn't really lose anyone The only way they are better is Brown/Sanders see the field more at the expense of Ward and Gay loses his job to Brown.

Buddha Bus
09-04-2011, 05:40 PM
I definitely think picking up Leach was a positive. I wish Arians and Tomlin would do that! :banging:

I also think Evans was an upgrade over Mason. It gives the Ravens the deep threat they were missing.

I'm not sure about your TEs yet though. I would have held onto Heap. He had a strong connection to your fanbase that will be missing now. He was a huge fan favorite and rallying leader for the fans.

Your o-line looked like drizzled shit (much like ours), but they have attempted to address it with the pickups of McKinnie and Gurode and moving Oher back to RT where he is much better. Time will tell if it pays off.

As far as their make-up, I think our defense will smear it all over those dirty Ratbird's faces come next Sunday!!!!! :tt03:

Just teasing, man. It should be the usual competitive game and knock down drag out affair. I'm looking forward to seeing what our two teams' revamped and improved rosters do next week.

Enjoy the game and welcome to the board! :drink:

Steeldude
09-04-2011, 06:35 PM
i would say slightly worse. starks and adams are gone. you have colon coming off a serious injury and j. scott is not starting material. who is the backup? gilbert? essex? i guess it couldn't be any worse.:noidea:

harrison's back concerns me. without harrison's push and command of double and triple-teams it will be hard for woodley to get any sacks. farrior is a year older and smith is coming off an injury.

the improvement should come in the WR department. with a year under their belt it can only get better, or so i assume.

CTFan
09-04-2011, 06:36 PM
Thanks Buddha, I expected a bit of ribbing. I'll get you back during basketball season. :)

You may be right about Heap, but he was too fragile so they ran him on out routes mostly. We may take a hit on his blocking ability however. The new guys are a bit light.

theplatypus
09-04-2011, 06:57 PM
If we can manage too stay healthy we'll be better than last year.

As it stands Ben appears to have turned the corner. He's making faster decisions/getting rid of the ball and hitting receivers in stride.

Combine the above with Wallace entering a contract year and Brown and Sanders as 2nd year players and your DB's have more than they can handle. Hines will always be Hines and Cotchery is a significant upgrade over ARE.

Because of 1 and 2 defensive coordinators can no longer stack 7-8 men in the box to stop the run. Which opens up lanes for a solid 1-2 punch of Mendy and Redman coming out of the backfield.

Assuming that our defense can stay healthy they should be towards the top of the league yet once again.


WHere the **** is bobbyjr?

Neil-Still-Rules-14
09-04-2011, 07:16 PM
I think the Ravens have regressed a lot. The defense is getting very old and the offense lost a lot of key players (Mason, Heap, McClain, McGahee, Houshmandzadeh).

On the other hand, I think the Steelers will be much better. Their receiving core gained some experience and looks very lethal. On defense, it seems like they're finding some young guys to fill holes.

steelfury02
09-04-2011, 07:25 PM
Hate to be a fence rider but I feel we are about the same. I do think at least at first Harrison will take a little while to get back to full strength (crossing fingers it isn't a long lasting season long nagging type of an injury) Because of that, like someone else mentioned - we have to hope that we can get someone in on the pressures/sacks besides Woodley. Here's to hoping Timmons is that guy. I'd say we will be a little more prone to teams that like to run it to the outside this year or use some misdirection. So to the chagrin of many - I'm saying our defense will take a step back this year. Age might finally catch up with us a little.

BUT - our offense has improved vastly IMHO. Proof is in the pudding but I'd make the argument we have top 3 - top 5 receiving corp in the league now and Ben has made some great strides (from what I've seen thus far at least) That I think will make up for some slow down on D. If we can finally put up some points maybe our D just needs to be solid to make another run at it all.

One thing is for sure - wk1 matchup is gonna be a slobber knocker once again. I think whoever wins this first game gets the division. Great confidence booster for the first half of the season.

Good luck to you and your Ratbrids. Just hope for your sake Joe Flacco will shed his "Checkdown Joey" status. If you find him constantly looking for Ray Rice for the dump off you guys are in trouble.

CTFan
09-04-2011, 07:50 PM
Gotta say, I'm impressed with both the civility and objectivity of this board.

Our biggest problems might happen early in the season as our OL hasn't played together for even one snap, and we've got a new secondary. As for Flacco, I used to be real high on him, but he's got to have a breakout year if he wants to be considered elite by anyone other than himself.

Interesting to hear that Ben is releasing the ball sooner. One of his strengths has been, well, his strength. He's let you guys get by with a subpar OL for years because he's so tough to sack. As he's getting older, he may not want to get hit as much and it may hurt more too. Your receivers scare me, especially if we can't generate pressure on Ben. Our new DC is more aggressive than Mattison was, but that doesn;'t come without risk.

How do you guys feel about the Sun, 1p start? Seems like a bad choiice by the NFL, or an attempt to sell more Sunday Ticket subscriptions.

Here's to a great game.

3rdandlong
09-04-2011, 07:54 PM
It's hard to say if we're better or worse this year. You can never really tell until the season starts.

I think our offensive line is adequate. The wide receiving corps has definitely improved. One of the tops in the league.

With Harrison's back ailing, I think our defense may take a slight step back this season, but still be dominant. Opening day will be a great test to see what kind of team we really have. I can't remember the last time we opened the season against a division opponent, especially the rival Ravens

Fire Arians
09-04-2011, 08:35 PM
better, our offense is going to be more potent. defense will still struggle against elite qb's. however, if we can keep up with the scoring of the other team we got a chance

SoCalFan
09-04-2011, 09:07 PM
We have Big Ben,You have flacco...Sorry dude,good luck this year,NOT! Seriously,takes guts to visit this site!

StainlessStill
09-04-2011, 09:26 PM
IMHO, Baltimore seems to be treading water at this point. Pressure is on for that offense to perform and they didn't do that with a solid offense last season and Flacco didn't seem to really take advantage of the weapons that was put around him and I don't really think Lee Evans is going to be that missing piece for a title run. They'll dial up more downfield balls but it won't be anything spectacular to the point where it'll be like defending a Randy Moss of some sort.

I just think the difference in this Pittsburgh team is that this time around, their going to be beating you offensively just as much as they beat you on defense. People harp on our o-line but we don't have an ordinary QB back there, he can get out of that mess.

Baltimore will be tough, but I just don't think Flacco can beat us 3 times a year.

sharkweek
09-04-2011, 11:00 PM
Brown and Sanders are no longer rookies and should make far more of an impact on offense this season (giving us arguably the best and deepest WR corps in the league) and Ben not being suspending for the first 4-6 games hanging over the team (as well as him being in great shape, probably the best so far of his pro career) should pretty much offset any areas where we might have regressed from last season. Defense might win championships, but the best defense is a good offense.

Kingmagyar
09-05-2011, 07:03 AM
Boy I think that offense could really be something this year. No team in the league has 5 Wideouts like that. They may have 4 but not 5. Throw in Miller, Mendenhall, and Redman...could be incredible, but I think the real reason it might be great is the quick passing game and screens. Did you notice in the preseason how quickly the ball was coming out and I noticed several more screens as well. Then they still have the deep ball which all 5 can catch well. The O-line has Super Bowl experience as well.

On Defense we all know Troy and Harrison's health are the keys. I don't think they can be as good as last year, as last year was almost record setting in terms of NFL defenses.

I expect good things from the offense, but am not quite as sure about the D-side of the ball. If Harrison is done they could be in real trouble, because when the QB has time to throw we get killed.

CTFan
09-05-2011, 07:48 AM
Ben has always been good at finding the open receiver, so a spread offense makes sense, especially with that receivng crew you've got. We've had problems drafting receivers in that past, although I think we've got some good ones this year, especially if Torrey Smith develops, which is no guarantee.

The Ravens have really focused on making changes that will help us compete against your team. Call it an obsession, but what else really matters if you can't be #1 in your division? Our pass rush was only 27th in sacks last year so we'll be blitzing more. Kruger, who we tried to turn into a DL by force feeding him milshakes, is now an OLB and he's had a good PS. Kindle is the big question mark, but he looks like he's okay and can really get into the backfield quickly (as long as there's no stairs involved).

Our offense should be a lot better too, but it depends on whether Flacco steps up. Should he get injured, Tyrod Taylor (Rookie, VATech) has impressed everyone. IMO, if he get an opportunity to start in a handful of games, it's somewhat Flacco may never get his job back.

Buddha Bus
09-05-2011, 09:44 AM
Thanks Buddha, I expected a bit of ribbing. I'll get you back during basketball season. :)

You may be right about Heap, but he was too fragile so they ran him on out routes mostly. We may take a hit on his blocking ability however. The new guys are a bit light.


No problem! :thumbsup:

You can fire away with the basketball ribs. I don't even watch basketball, so :hunch:.

If you really want to trash me, I'll tell you I'm a Baltimore Orioles fan, but that's like fist fighting a paraplegic. :chuckle:

CTFan
09-05-2011, 10:10 AM
If you don't care, it takes all the fun out of it. I'm an O's fan too, but I don't often admit it. In fact, I think I may be cured of it - haven't watched a game in about two months.

Kanata-Steeler
09-05-2011, 10:23 AM
Yes, the Steelers are exactly the same as last year.
and when we get to the SB again, I hope we ARE NOT exactly the same as last year, simply because I don't wanna see, Ben and the "O" hand over, 3 turnovers in a SB where we lose again, (like we did against GB)
Other than that, we are prime for another SB showing for sure

steelfury02
09-05-2011, 11:07 AM
I always enjoy the post pre-season or pre regular season speculation - makes for some enjoyable threads.

Happen to have a good bit of Ravens fans in my family and I'd just offer up their perspective that they all seem cautiously optimistic. They are more confident in the defense improving from last year and that Flacco has about a 1 to 2 year window to take the next step before some real concerns set in. They feel that the Ravens are trying too hard to mold themselves and replicate themselves to match the Steelers rather than finding their own identity.

HOWEVER - if the Ravens don't improve offensively if it were me I would start questioning your offensive coordinator. There is a line of thought that we have won in spite of Bruce Arians due to Ben's abilities.

Here's a thought - IMHO - Flacco is better than Sanchez - BUT . . .Sanchez has been put in a better position to win with what they ask him to do. I've always said that if Flacco had been with the Jets they would have at least made it to the SB already if not won one. I just wouldn't trust Flacco in Cam Cameron's hands - I think he is at least just as bad as Arians, if not a little worse for the simple fact that he doesn't protect Flacco when he should and goes ultra conservative when he should be unleashing him.

stb_steeler
09-05-2011, 11:27 AM
Gotta say, I'm impressed with both the civility and objectivity of this board.

Our biggest problems might happen early in the season as our OL hasn't played together for even one snap, and we've got a new secondary. As for Flacco, I used to be real high on him, but he's got to have a breakout year if he wants to be considered elite by anyone other than himself.

Interesting to hear that Ben is releasing the ball sooner. One of his strengths has been, well, his strength. He's let you guys get by with a subpar OL for years because he's so tough to sack. As he's getting older, he may not want to get hit as much and it may hurt more too. Your receivers scare me, especially if we can't generate pressure on Ben. Our new DC is more aggressive than Mattison was, but that doesn;'t come without risk.

How do you guys feel about the Sun, 1p start? Seems like a bad choiice by the NFL, or an attempt to sell more Sunday Ticket subscriptions.

Here's to a great game.
Why do you think a 1pm start seems like a bad start........Isnt that the time football is actually played?......Steelers love 1pm starts!

ricardisimo
09-05-2011, 11:48 AM
I think we might be worse in one aspect: Harrison's back injury/surgery/recovery. If he can't get any consistent pressure from his side, and our already inconsistent corners are asked to do their jobs that much longer on each play, it's going to be a long season. These new receivers of ours had better score buckets.

Corey_J
09-05-2011, 01:02 PM
Our team overall is much better. With them moving the kickoffs up , one of our achilles heals was that damn kick off coverage. So now most of the time the offense will start out at the 20vs. our D. Cmon, thats help right there. Our OL is a consern for me but weve been saying that for almost 6 years ! Some how with one the ELITE QBs in the game behind that throwing to the most competitive WR corp in the league they will get the job done. Not to mention is our running game which has a slew of talent in it ! Our D will be just fine ! Maybe even better. Our DBs will have to step it up for sure , but we will still get to the QB with strategy from the best DC in the buisness. Harrison and Polamalu hurting is a bit of strain , BUT we have ryan clark in whom we can bring on the blitz vs. troy and keep troy incoverage to scare offenses. Harrison on the other hand has to be looking over his shoulder imo for J Worilds. This guy is going to get playing time and will perform. Timmons is a beast in the middle and may be one of the best in the buis. OH and with the 30th ranked schedule I dont see why we are even thinking we wont win this division. Sorry Ratbird fans.............this wont be your year either !

Moose
09-05-2011, 01:13 PM
Hey CTfan--welcome aboard. As obvious, we won't know the answer to your question for sure until the end of season, but my opinion is I feel we really haven't lost too much step from last year. I really like some of our dratfs and rookies. I feel there are going to be some rookies that will step up big this year, and I feel there will be the one or two players that will really excell. But on the other hand, we also have some player's that we still wonder why they are on the payroll. Just as I'm sure you do with your team. I think it will be a really good year again (barring any injuries ). I'm looking forward to the 1st game....sorry, can't wish you luck for your team though.

SteelerFanStuckInBaltimor
09-05-2011, 02:27 PM
Ben has always been good at finding the open receiver, so a spread offense makes sense, especially with that receivng crew you've got. We've had problems drafting receivers in that past, although I think we've got some good ones this year, especially if Torrey Smith develops, which is no guarantee.

The Ravens have really focused on making changes that will help us compete against your team. Call it an obsession, but what else really matters if you can't be #1 in your division? Our pass rush was only 27th in sacks last year so we'll be blitzing more. Kruger, who we tried to turn into a DL by force feeding him milshakes, is now an OLB and he's had a good PS. Kindle is the big question mark, but he looks like he's okay and can really get into the backfield quickly (as long as there's no stairs involved).

Our offense should be a lot better too, but it depends on whether Flacco steps up. Should he get injured, Tyrod Taylor (Rookie, VATech) has impressed everyone. IMO, if he get an opportunity to start in a handful of games, it's somewhat Flacco may never get his job back.
Kindle, Kruger and Webb blitzed effectively in your preseason, and McPhee and Art Jones provided some inside rush. It's just a matter of consistent pressure - if you send 5-6 against 3 of our WRs, you HAVE to get Ben contained and down. If not, our young receivers will torch you. I think Pagano is taking the right approach - the Steelers have had marginal corners but our pass rush compensates, and I think that's the direction Pagano is taking your defense. It's just that you must execute.

Welcome aboard. Nice to talk to an intelligent Ravens fan.

madtowndrunkard
09-05-2011, 07:07 PM
I suspect we will be better on offense and worse on defense. Over all about the same.... but I think we'll win games a little differently then we have in the past..... by scoring a lot of points. We'll also lose some games a little differently then we're used to.... (by getting lit up)

I'm one of the few that is very worried about our pass rush. I think a drop in our pass rushing and bad corner play could mean some long days at the office. I also am a little worried about our rush defense. We are pretty old up front. That said I still think we are legit SB contenders.

CTFan
09-06-2011, 09:07 AM
Thanks for the welcome Moose and SFSIB. We're all fans so we all wear tinted glasses at time, but it sure is fun to have good teams to cheer for.

STB, I just think Ravens-Steelers games should all be in Prime Time so more people can enjoy them.

wera176
09-06-2011, 11:31 AM
Not adding to the thread, but Corey_J, I love that clip you have running in your post of Harrison and that hapless Card. I almost felt bad for #47 (almost, I recall what Harrison was PO'd about), I kept thinking this must be what a gazelle feels like when a lion has her....

steelfury02
09-06-2011, 12:47 PM
Re on Harrison v. Aaron Francisco - didnt Francisco try to take a cheap shot at Harrison's knee? I remember Madden saying Harrison was lucky he didn't get thrown out but then they went back to instant replay and showed why he was so ticked.

Corey_J
09-06-2011, 02:46 PM
Re on Harrison v. Aaron Francisco - didnt Francisco try to take a cheap shot at Harrison's knee? I remember Madden saying Harrison was lucky he didn't get thrown out but then they went back to instant replay and showed why he was so ticked.
:tt02:

LVSteelersfan
09-06-2011, 03:51 PM
Thanks for the welcome Moose and SFSIB. We're all fans so we all wear tinted glasses at time, but it sure is fun to have good teams to cheer for.

STB, I just think Ravens-Steelers games should all be in Prime Time so more people can enjoy them.

Sorry. Not gonna happen. Your whiny butt ownership cried to the commissioner to not play any more prime time games in Pittsburgh. That just shows how pathetic they are. Most teams crave the prime time. The Ravens want to go hide.

CTFan
09-06-2011, 06:27 PM
I didn't understand that beef either. I could see wanting more prime time games, but complaining about a PT game being away is just silly. If anything, I would think a visitor would have better odds than if it were a plain old Sunday game.

bobby jr
09-06-2011, 08:25 PM
Worse.

Fire Arians
09-06-2011, 08:53 PM
Worse.

:wave:

ricardisimo
09-07-2011, 01:28 AM
Worse.
Booby!

NPNA-mtPXw8