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View Full Version : Why so few takeaway - lack of pass rush, age, or both?


LayingTheWoodley56
11-22-2011, 01:16 PM
I read on the Post-Gazette's website that we're on pace for 9-10 turnovers this season after getting 35 takeaways last season. 35! And now 9 or 10 we're on pace for? It has been incredibly frustrating watching us fail to intercept the likes of Tavaris, Jackson, Blaine Gabbert and Curtis Painter this season. The fact that we won those three games notwithstanding, how is it possible that our excellent defense couldn't force ONE of those guys into just ONE mistake?

Much of it, I think, has to do with a lack of pressure on the quarterback. Harrison and Woodley have gotten their share of sacks, but they've rarely been on the field together with the injuries and their healthy sack numbers are not indicative of a consistent pass rush, obviously, since we haven't had one. Too many times this season we've failed to get a consistent push on the other team's QB, which reduces turnovers for obvious reasons.

Another part of it is the loss of speed that inevitably comes with a gain in years. Clark, Ike, and Troy while still all at least above-average players, may have lost that half-step needed to jump a route and intercept a pass. Ike was never great shakes at picks anyway. It is troubling that Troy, at only 30, is following up a 7 interception season with a 0 interception one. I hope the myriad leg injuries he's suffered over the years aren't beginning to debilitate him.

Last thought: it was cool to see the guys so excited jumping up and down after the pick by Timmons against Cincy. You know this lack of takeaways is grating on them too. Hard to find a defense with more pride anywhere. Let's hope the two fourth quarter picks off Dalton are the beginning of an avalanche. Tyler Palko? Perfect place to start. Then Dalton, McCoy, Alex Smith (not sold on him - probably won't ever be) Bradford, McCoy again - how bout we set a goal at at least 10 picks in the last six games?

theplatypus
11-22-2011, 03:08 PM
Most football teams have considerable variability when it comes to year-to-year Turnover Margins. In "Don't Lose the Ball," I showed the impact of turnovers and their high correlation with wins. However, the teams that take the ball away the most in one season almost always suffer a drop in their margin the next. Likewise, the teams that lose the football at a greater margin usually keep the ball more in the following year. This "Regression to the Mean" is a result of the small sample size that the football season provides.


http://www.clowerstats.com/turnovermargin.html

Whodis
11-22-2011, 03:43 PM
I think we drop a lot of nit's....

Is it because of age or pass rush?

PhantomJB93
11-22-2011, 04:28 PM
I think it's just bad luck to be honest. The pass rush has dropped off noticeably since last year, but not really enough to justify how few turnovers we've gotten.

It's not like the defense outright sucks or anything (although they did early in the year for a little bit), they're still playing well, it's just the turnovers have inexplicably stopped.

StainlessStill
11-22-2011, 04:34 PM
Polamalu dropped a pick 6 at Indy. Clark dropped a pick in the endzone against Flaccid. Larry Foote also let an interception slip right through his hands on that last drive against Baltimore as well. Even last week, that jump-ball in the endzone from Dalton to Green should have been picked off.

The opportunities are there, but it's baffling how we're sitting at 7-3 with only a couple INT's on the season and also lacking in the overall turnover ratio. It's coming. If we can play like the defense we can be and force the turnovers late in these last half of games, who will beat us?

OX1947
11-22-2011, 05:14 PM
Troy dropped 4 INTs this year. Not those kind that you touch with one hand trying to deflect the ball, I mean, in the bread basket INTs. One, that would have been a TD. Just one of those fluke things that happens a few times, I guess.

Steelthe#1dynasty
11-23-2011, 09:25 AM
Troy dropped 4 INTs this year. Not those kind that you touch with one hand trying to deflect the ball, I mean, in the bread basket INTs. One, that would have been a TD. Just one of those fluke things that happens a few times, I guess.

The reason is dropped those interceptions was the fact that were too easy. Troy has to be challenged! He's getting bored.. Expect our D to go on a run here!

steelfury02
11-23-2011, 10:16 AM
If we can build off of Balt loss and Cincy win we'll be in good shape.

Happy Thanksgiving 49ers!!!!!

tanda10506
11-23-2011, 02:17 PM
As mentioned we have dropped a lot of picks. The first 4 games we were a totally different team, thats 25% of the season. The lack of pass rush does make a difference but Woodley and Harrison are back against the chiefs back up qb, we will get some turnovers this game for sure. I wish people would stop worrying about age, it's not the reason for any of the problems we've had and the guys aren't even a calender year older than last years playoffs.

tanda10506
11-23-2011, 02:21 PM
The reason is dropped those interceptions was the fact that were too easy. Troy has to be challenged! He's getting bored.. Expect our D to go on a run here!

Not being challenged? We lost to our rivals twice and are now technically behind in the division, he's being challenged and for the most part he's playing well, but he's just not making the big plays we are used to.

theplatypus
11-23-2011, 02:37 PM
The reason is dropped those interceptions was the fact that were too easy. Troy has to be challenged! He's getting bored.. Expect our D to go on a run here!


That's an interesting theory.

steelerchad
11-23-2011, 02:45 PM
We always drop a lot of picks. We aren't forcing any fumbles this year for 1. We have only 2 fumble recoveries. Harrison has forced 6 or 7 himself in a season a couple times. So him missing some games has an impact. Also, part of this is luck and this will probably turn a little. If it does, I think we could make another deep run. Maybe in turns for us in the playoffs.

We are last in both fumble recoveries (2) and INT's (4).

The bigger question is, has a team ever been 7-3 or better while being last in both fumbles and INT's.

Fire Arians
11-23-2011, 03:20 PM
doesn't concern me much as long as we continue to win. I don't care if we're -100 in turnover differential if we win the super bowl

with how good our defense is, we will get our turnovers. we've been forcing fumbles and getting hands on passes, we just have to recover them.

NEWstevo
11-23-2011, 10:44 PM
Turnovers.

Looking back, the turnovers are a bigger issue than people think. I know its a waste of time to talk "shoulda-coulda" stuff but its the holiday and I have the time. If the Steelers would have the TO ratio in their favor like all the other good teams, then they could be 9-1. Or maybe even 10-0 (if you take back all of Ben's turnovers in the ravens game).

And remember that game in Feb? Again, it was the TO's that killed the Steelers. No pick-6 and no Mendy fumble and right now we are all talking about the straight road to eight.

There is no simple reason why the ball just ins't falling for Pittsburgh this year. But with that said, they are still in a great position and it's not too late to turn it around.

Go Steelers!