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teegre
12-20-2012, 10:27 AM
Greg Cosell was on The HERD (Colin Cowherd’s ESPN radio show) this morning. Cosell is a tape guru, who tells it as it is: no sugar coating; not stats; just tape… and, as Cowherd says, the tape does not lie.

Cowherd asked Cosell about the relationship between Haley & Big Ben.

Haley said that he talked to one of Big Ben’s former coaches, and that that coach applauded Haley for trying to lengthen Big Ben’s career. As that coach said, and Cosell agreed, “Even as big as Big Ben is, all of those hits take a toll.”

Cosell said that the plays that Haley was calling were working well (aside from the fumbles, which is another story in & of itself). They were keeping BB upright and not sacked… and BB & the offense was productive.

The problem arose when the O-line got injured/shuffled, and then the running game suffered, and BB got hurt, and they just haven’t gotten back on track.

But, Cosell was adamant that Haley was & is still making the right calls, but that injuries (O-line, BB), no running game, and turnovers have led to a slowed offense.

SUMMATION
Cosell averred that Haley is indeed making the right calls, in order to prolong BB’s career, as well as make BB & the offense better. .

austinfrench76
12-20-2012, 12:15 PM
Couldn't agree more with Cosell. More than anything, Turnovers has killed this year. Specifically by the WR's. Unbelieveable!

Cyphon
12-20-2012, 12:22 PM
I am very happy with Haleys offense to this point. Especially after what I watched with Arians. The biggest problem we have had are injuries and execution, not play calling.

steelfury02
12-20-2012, 12:30 PM
4 things for this offense to click and score enough points

O-line has to stay healthy

RBs need to get positive yardage, even just 3-4 yards, falling forward to get teams to respect it enough

WRs need to POSSESS the ball

YAC. I can't repeat that last one enough. IMO - we don't need to be bombing it on 3rd and short. Get the receivers the ball, hope they possess it, and let them run away with it. Consistent 3 to 5 step drops and release is the name of the game. Let the receivers do the work.

SteelersCanada
12-20-2012, 12:30 PM
I have a couple problems with Haley's offense. I think what needs to be addressed first and foremost is the lack of gameplanning around Mike Wallace. Why is he running intermediate and underneath routes when he has the talent and speed to blow the top off a defense? The same could be said for Manny and AB - we should be running a vertical offense that gives Ben the chance to throw it down field more often. I'm not saying I'm completely against the 'dink and dunk' that he's implemented, but we have talented WRs and we're not using them properly. We've invested in our offensive line heavily the past few years to protect Roethlisberger and his offense often times feels like it's going overboard with keeping Ben safe. He isn't made of glass and he isn't going to change how he plays - let the receivers run and let Ben make things happen the way only Ben can.

The other major gripe I have about his offense is the lack of running outside the tackles. Look, when Rainey is on the field, he shouldn't be running it up the middle. Let him bounce it outside and make a play in open space instead of having to fight through linebackers and defensive linemen. I don't understand the big fad here in Pittsburgh of "run it up the middle! ya!" when that shit isn't working and hasn't for years.

Despite the weaknesses in his gameplan, it's still a step up from watching Arians call plays.

JeromeBetties63
12-20-2012, 12:35 PM
Please lower the number of times we throw wide receiver screens. Less is more when it comes to that play. It can work if we don't use it so stinking often. Ben was getting sacked less. That's a very good thing. However, he can't be hogtied. They need to strike a balance.

teegre
12-20-2012, 01:11 PM
I have a couple problems with Haley's offense. I think what needs to be addressed first and foremost is the lack of gameplanning around Mike Wallace. Why is he running intermediate and underneath routes when he has the talent and speed to blow the top off a defense? The same could be said for Manny and AB - we should be running a vertical offense that gives Ben the chance to throw it down field more often. I'm not saying I'm completely against the 'dink and dunk' that he's implemented, but we have talented WRs and we're not using them properly. We've invested in our offensive line heavily the past few years to protect Roethlisberger and his offense often times feels like it's going overboard with keeping Ben safe. He isn't made of glass and he isn't going to change how he plays - let the receivers run and let Ben make things happen the way only Ben can.

The other major gripe I have about his offense is the lack of running outside the tackles. Look, when Rainey is on the field, he shouldn't be running it up the middle. Let him bounce it outside and make a play in open space instead of having to fight through linebackers and defensive linemen. I don't understand the big fad here in Pittsburgh of "run it up the middle! ya!" when that shit isn't working and hasn't for years.

Despite the weaknesses in his gameplan, it's still a step up from watching Arians call plays.

DEEP TO WALLACE
That's the one area where I think Haley has "failed" (for lack of a better word). I think that even if Wallace is only a "one-trick pony" (which I do not really think is accurate), it is one hell of a trick. Ergo, throw it deeeeep to him five or six times per game, and have him run deep ten to twelve times per game. If nothing else, it makes the FS play waaaay deep.

Of course, that said, BB is not the best at throwing the deep ball (I guess that he isn't perfect). And, of course, there is the fact that Wallace will drop half of those passes.

Math...

BB hits Wallace in stride once in every three attempts (2 of 6 attempts)... Wallace catches one in every two good throws (1 of 2)... carry the one... one long reception per game.

Again, even if they only connect once per game, the number of attempts alone would push the FS back.

RUNNING OUTSIDE
I, too, wonder why that is.

Maybe they don't have the OGs to pull & block to the outside... (El-Gonzo Jackson, please tell us if that is so).

Maybe the RBs can't get outside... BUT, Rainey sure as heck can. Hmmm...

I don't know why they don't run outside. Good question.

MAIN GOALIf his main goal was to prolong BB's career and/or make BB a more effective passer, Haley has accomplished his goal.

Rotorhead
12-20-2012, 01:20 PM
The problem with trying to run Rainey ourside is everyone in the world knows je wont be able to run up the middle so they cover the outside, he has been completely inneffective the few time we have run it outside.

Riddle_Of_Steel
12-20-2012, 01:58 PM
I have a couple problems with Haley's offense. I think what needs to be addressed first and foremost is the lack of gameplanning around Mike Wallace. Why is he running intermediate and underneath routes when he has the talent and speed to blow the top off a defense? The same could be said for Manny and AB - we should be running a vertical offense that gives Ben the chance to throw it down field more often.

I agree with you-- somewhat. What you are asking for here, is Bruce Arians to come back to the Burgh.

The goal of Haley's offense is to take the high-percentage gains and keep Ben from holding the ball trying to force something downfield.

I'm not saying I'm completely against the 'dink and dunk' that he's implemented, but we have talented WRs and we're not using them properly.

Although he is quick, sending Antonio Brown deep is not using him the correct way. He is a possession receiver, who specializes in YAC.

Mike Wallace's talent is single-fold-- he can run really fast. Can't catch, can't run clean routes. Sure, send him deep every play. For what it's worth-- teams don't fear him as uch anymore. he does not draw the double coverage he did in past years. They know he will drop it.

We've invested in our offensive line heavily the past few years to protect Roethlisberger and his offense often times feels like it's going overboard with keeping Ben safe. He isn't made of glass and he isn't going to change how he plays - let the receivers run and let Ben make things happen the way only Ben can.

Ala Bruce Arians......

The other major gripe I have about his offense is the lack of running outside the tackles. Look, when Rainey is on the field, he shouldn't be running it up the middle. Let him bounce it outside and make a play in open space instead of having to fight through linebackers and defensive linemen. I don't understand the big fad here in Pittsburgh of "run it up the middle! ya!" when that shit isn't working and hasn't for years.

Despite the weaknesses in his gameplan, it's still a step up from watching Arians call plays.

^^^ This for sure.

The reason they keep running it up the middle, is because other than the miniature Rainey, they do not have an outside run threat except the one that has been inactive for the last three weeks.

Ricco Suavez
12-20-2012, 02:14 PM
I liked the way Haleys offense was progressing after about the 4th or 5th game. If I had any complaints they were and are, not enough shots down field with the deep ball, and running way too much on first down. Now as far as using Wallace as a deep threat I agree, but only to an extent. Using him too often, becomes predictable and will tire our true deep threat out during the course of a game. On the other hand his presence should draw a lot of double coverage which will open the underneath routes up more. Brown should be used for deep routes also to keep the secondary honest.

GoFor7
12-20-2012, 02:20 PM
I agree with you-- somewhat. What you are asking for here, is Bruce Arians to come back to the Burgh.

The goal of Haley's offense is to take the high-percentage gains and keep Ben from holding the ball trying to force something downfield.

Arians in the only OC that ever takes shots down field? High-percentage stuff might make Ben's stats look good, but it has resulted in the 20th ranked scoring offense.



Although he is quick, sending Antonio Brown deep is not using him the correct way. He is a possession receiver, who specializes in YAC.

Mike Wallace's talent is single-fold-- he can run really fast. Can't catch, can't run clean routes. Sure, send him deep every play. For what it's worth-- teams don't fear him as uch anymore. he does not draw the double coverage he did in past years. They know he will drop it.

Well when you don't take shots, the other team has nothing to respect.



Ala Bruce Arians......

Well, Haley didn't keep him safe either. "But there were injuries to the offensive line!" Hey, there were injuries to the offensive line in years past and it wasn't an excuse. You don't dumb down your strengths because you're shitting your pants over your perceived weaknesses. The Steelers have done that, play small ball, and it has resulted in a 7-7 record thus far.

teegre
12-20-2012, 02:51 PM
Well, Haley didn't keep him safe either.

An injury can happen on ANY play. And, it only takes ONE play for the QB to be out. Ergo, the goal is to limit the number of times that the QB is subject to being hit.

Less sacks = less hits = less opportunity for injury

The sacks are down. Period.

it has resulted in a 7-7 record thus far.

Fumbles.

The Oakland game was fumbled away.
The Cleveland game was absolutely fumbled away.
The Dallas game was fumbled away.

Plus, BB being out for three games probably had something to do with this record.

Before his injury, this team was 6-3 and rolling.

GoFor7
12-20-2012, 03:01 PM
An injury can happen on ANY play. And, it only takes ONE play for the QB to be out. Ergo, the goal is to limit the number of times that the QB is subject to being hit.

Less sacks = less hits = less opportunity for injury

The sacks are down. Period.

But they're playing scared. The Steelers are so worried about what "could" happen that they dumb down their strengths to try and cover up perceived weaknesses. And generally in sports when you worry about getting hurt, you get hurt - ala Ben missing 3 weeks.

The truth is this offense doesn't utilize its best weapons in the most effective way (in fear of what "could" happen), and it's no better at scoring than Arians' offense was. Quite odd isn't it? Todd Haley has a history of adapting a scheme to best fit his personnel. Maybe he's not in full control.

teegre
12-20-2012, 03:18 PM
But they're playing scared. The Steelers are so worried about what "could" happen that they dumb down their strengths to try and cover up perceived weaknesses. And generally in sports when you worry about getting hurt, you get hurt - ala Ben missing 3 weeks.

The truth is this offense doesn't utilize its best weapons in the most effective way (in fear of what "could" happen), and it's no better at scoring than Arians' offense was. Quite odd isn't it? Todd Haley has a history of adapting a scheme to best fit his personnel. Maybe he's not in full control.

MAKEABLE THIRD DOWNS
I disagree with the first paragraph. Simply, as Greg Cosell said this morning, "They are playing smarter & better."

Think about it this way. Here is how it was:

1st & 10... deep... incomplete
2nd & 10... deep... incomplete
3rd & 10... the defense knows it's a pass... sack.

Versus how the Haley system is supposed to go:

1st & 10... look deep... dump off to AB
2nd & 7... look deep... dump off to Heath
3rd & 4... the defense is guessing (run or pass?)... AND it is makeable yardage.

That said, and I know you well enough to foresee your reply... alas, here is what it has actually been too much of:

1st & 10... run up the middle
2nd & 9... run up the middle
3rd & 8... the defense knows it's a pass... BB throws it away.

THE SCHEME
I agree with you about SOME of the second paragraph.

The scoring (or lack thereof) is a concern. That said, before the injury, it was not a problem. And, again, the fumbles killed many scoring drives.

Speaking of fumbles, I truly think that Haley has designed plays to the strengths of AB & Heath. While Heath has exceled, AB has fumbled (literally). And we all agree: not enough deep passes to Wallace (maybe not 6 per game, like I suggested, but more than once per game).

As far as Haley not having control, that was a very clever way of blaming Art II. I gotta give you credit for that roundabout way of slipping that in. Kudos for creativity.

GoFor7
12-20-2012, 03:34 PM
This team was still underachieving in scoring offense before anyone went down with an injury, but that's to be expected from this type of offense. When you're more concerned with TOP and grinding down the clock, you aren't going to score much.

You don't want to hear this, but many of you hate Arians for the wrong reasons. You hate him because he didn't make this offense look like the offense from the early 70's. The truth is they lead the league in TOP last year, they averaged 4.4 yds/carry on running plays, and they were good at moving the ball in between the 20's. Where the Arians offense failed is where this offense still fails - scoring. Too many field goals, not enough TDs. No killer instinct, just a team that plays scared.

tanda10506
12-20-2012, 04:12 PM
I have NFL Game Rewind and watch the coach's film, and I would agree that we are better with Haley, and could be A LOT better if he fixes a few minor things and our WR's hang on to the ball. Ben throwing INT's for 6 points in Dallas and Denver basically ended those games for us, and Sanders/Wallace/Brown can't hang on to the ball AFTER the catch. Wallace doesn't seem to even be able to make the catch half the time. So it's obvious that Haley hasn't got much help from the players.

Ben was having a career year before the injury and we were running it pretty decent before we lost multiple offensive lineman, and Heath is being used properly finally. Also, the smaller details like using a FB, using Heath to help Adams when he had to come in at RT, etc. are things that Arians didn't even know was possible.

My major (and pretty much only) problem with Haley is that everybody is running a short route. When i watch the coach's film, often times we have EVERY WR/TE/RB running a route of 7 yards or less. I'm not talking about the screen's or trick type plays, I'm talking about every 1st and 2nd down. When I re-watched last game we literally had 4 plays where every target ran a route less then 5 yards. Throw it down field sometimes!! I'm not talking about deep balls, but it is called a "forward" pass, throw it down field 10-15 yards so we can actually get a first down on 1st or 2nd. And run it outside sometimes, running up the gut is not working well. If our WR's could hang on to the ball and Haley would get some routes down field this offense would be top notch.

GoFor7
12-20-2012, 04:21 PM
My major (and pretty much only) problem with Haley is that everybody is running a short route. When i watch the coach's film, often times we have EVERY WR/TE/RB running a route of 7 yards or less. I'm not talking about the screen's or trick type plays, I'm talking about every 1st and 2nd down. When I re-watched last game we literally had 4 plays where every target ran a route less then 5 yards. Throw it down field sometimes!! I'm not talking about deep balls, but it is called a "forward" pass, throw it down field 10-15 yards so we can actually get a first down on 1st or 2nd. And run it outside sometimes, running up the gut is not working well. If our WR's could hang on to the ball and Haley would get some routes down field this offense would be top notch.

It's simple - it's because they're scared. They worry to much about what could go wrong, so they dumb down all their strengths. "Oh no! Ben could get hurt if he throws deep!" "Oh no! It could fall incomplete!" "Oh no! It could get intercepted!" "Oh no! We won't look like the team from the 70's if we do that!"

It's chicken shit, small ball, scared football. The defense does the same with the 10 yard cushions and "tackle the catch." No big plays are being made for this Steeler team because they worry more about what could go wrong. Who has won a super bowl playing like that?

mikegrimey
12-20-2012, 05:14 PM
How many points a game are we averaging this year? I know the "Arians is a criminal against mankind" faction were always frustrated that we had a hard time putting up points even with a great QB.

teegre
12-20-2012, 06:28 PM
This team was still underachieving in scoring offense before anyone went down with an injury
I would say that it was decent... slightly better than last year, but truthfully, not as good as anyone would want. That number dropped signifcantly in BB's absence.

When you're more concerned with TOP and grinding down the clock
Again, where did you read this? see this? hear this?

Haley stated that his goals were to protect BB (in his initial press conference),a nd he has doen that. I have never once read that his main goal was TOP.

You hate him because he didn't make this offense look like the offense from the early 70's.
Putting words in other people's mouths. I have yet to read ANYONE say anything like that. (We hate him for different reasons.)

The truth is they lead the league in TOP last year, they averaged 4.4 yds/carry on running plays, and they were good at moving the ball in between the 20's. Where the Arians offense failed is where this offense still fails - scoring. Too many field goals, not enough TDs.
You repeated yourself, and I shall do the same: I would say that it was decent... slightly better than last year, but truthfully, not as good as anyone would want. That number dropped signifcantly in BB's absence.

No killer instinct, just a team that plays scared.
I am going to believe what Greg Cosell said about this team... because, he is a respected professional who makes objective remarks after film study. No stats; just film. He says the offense was on the right track... and I agree with him.

GoFor7
12-20-2012, 06:40 PM
You mean it isn't blatantly obvious the Steelers are overly concerned with TOP? Where do I see it? I see it in the way they play. I see it when Wallace is only sent a few yards down field. I see it when they try to run up the middle on 1st and 2nd downs. I've heard in Tomlin's press conferences earlier in the season, something along the lines of "we want to possess the ball."

You can site stats or talk about the mandate to protect Ben all you want, but what matters most is 20th in scoring and 7-7. The team needs a change in offensive philosophy. Instead of fearing the quick strike teams, they need to become one.

Riddle_Of_Steel
12-20-2012, 06:51 PM
You mean it isn't blatantly obvious the Steelers are overly concerned with TOP?

Even if they are obsessed with ToP-- WHAT IS WRONG WITH THAT? We have a lot of old guys on defense, and the way to keep a defense fresh is to own the ball and not let the other team do the same.

It also deprives the other team of scoring opportunities if they don't have the ball.

Where do I see it? I see it in the way they play. I see it when Wallace is only sent a few yards down field. I see it when they try to run up the middle on 1st and 2nd downs. I've heard in Tomlin's press conferences earlier in the season, something along the lines of "we want to possess the ball."

Again, that is a winning strategy, in any level of football. Where we got derailed this year was with the injuries, the defense that started out rough, lack of a legit franchise RB, and a freak injury to Ben on a sack that did not look any more vicious than the 46 per season he was averaging under Arians.

The gameplan was nearly flawless, the execution is where the failure was.

You can site stats or talk about the mandate to protect Ben all you want, but what matters most is 20th in scoring and 7-7. The team needs a change in offensive philosophy. Instead of fearing the quick strike teams, they need to become one.

20th in scoring is two spots above where Arians offense ranked in its prime, if I am not mistaken. Keep in mind, when Arians took over, he was already an assistant for our team and did nto do a complete overhaul of teh playbook like Haley was expected to do upon arrival.

All things considered, our offense was clicking this year in a way it hasn't done in seasons, until Ben got hurt and the wheels fell off in KC.

"Instead of fearing the quick strike teams, they need to become one?" Isn't that what Haley is doing?

GoFor7
12-20-2012, 07:04 PM
Even if they are obsessed with ToP-- WHAT IS WRONG WITH THAT? We have a lot of old guys on defense, and the way to keep a defense fresh is to own the ball and not let the other team do the same.

It also deprives the other team of scoring opportunities if they don't have the ball.

Because that's an outdated way of thinking. This defense has been burned even when the offense owned TOP. This is no longer a grind-it-out clock possession league, it's about striking quickly. You wanna take pressure off a defense, score more points and put the pressure on the other team.

How many times have we seen the Steelers grind out a long drive, only to come out with a FG? And after that, how many times have we seen the other team march down the field quickly and get a TD? It's time the Steelers stop fearing the quick strike teams and become one.



Again, that is a winning strategy, in any level of football. Where we got derailed this year was with the injuries, the defense that started out rough, lack of a legit franchise RB, and a freak injury to Ben on a sack that did not look any more vicious than the 46 per season he was averaging under Arians.

The gameplan was nearly flawless, the execution is where the failure was.

7-7, 20th in scoring. Not winning football. Take your head out of the 70's.



20th in scoring is two spots above where Arians offense ranked in its prime, if I am not mistaken. Keep in mind, when Arians took over, he was already an assistant for our team and did nto do a complete overhaul of teh playbook like Haley was expected to do upon arrival.

Then maybe an overhaul wasn't the right solution. Maybe what worked should have been kept, keeping the focus more on red zone efficiency. If a dud like Arians can have the 9th scoring offense in his first season as OC, there's no excuse for Haley not to do better.

All things considered, our offense was clicking this year in a way it hasn't done in seasons, until Ben got hurt and the wheels fell off in KC.

"Instead of fearing the quick strike teams, they need to become one?" Isn't that what Haley is doing?

Umm, do you not know what quick strike means? Quick strike means scoring points quickly, like the Patriots, Broncos, and Packers do.

teegre
12-20-2012, 07:16 PM
You mean it isn't blatantly obvious the Steelers are overly concerned with TOP? Where do I see it? I see it in the way they play. I see it when Wallace is only sent a few yards down field. I see it when they try to run up the middle on 1st and 2nd downs. I've heard in Tomlin's press conferences earlier in the season, something along the lines of "we want to possess the ball."

You can site stats or talk about the mandate to protect Ben all you want, but what matters most is 20th in scoring and 7-7. The team needs a change in offensive philosophy. Instead of fearing the quick strike teams, they need to become one.

MAIN GOAL
I’m sure Tomlin’s mentioned “possessing” the ball, because that is generally a topic of discussion about one’s offense. I am also sure that he has mentioned touchdowns… and points… and converting third downs… and not fumbling… and blocking. All of those items come up in post-game interviews… so, what exactly is your point???

You aver that the MAIN goal of this offense is TOP, but I have never heard anyone say that. Whereas, I have indeed heard them say that their main goal is to prolong BB’s career. Less sacks = goal achieved.

Wait… you watched tape. Oh…

Again, I’m going to take the word of the highly respected professional: Greg Cosell.

STATS
Again, Cosell is not about stats; he is ONLY about film. Thus, once again, I am going to agree with his assessment of the offense.

RECORD
6-3 before BB's injury.

teegre
12-20-2012, 07:23 PM
Because that's an outdated way of thinking. This defense has been burned even when the offense owned TOP. This is no longer a grind-it-out clock possession league, it's about striking quickly. You wanna take pressure off a defense, score more points and put the pressure on the other team.

Last year's game against the Taperiots.... a good game, yes?

They kept Brady on the sidelines.

Yes, obviously, the difference was that the offense scored TDs (everyone agrees with that), but keeping the ball for longer is not a bad thing.

7-7, 20th in scoring. Not winning football. .
6-3 before BB's injury.

Scoring offense ranked TWO places higher than Arians offense, even after BB missed three games.

defence
12-20-2012, 07:34 PM
Even if they are obsessed with ToP-- WHAT IS WRONG WITH THAT? We have a lot of old guys on defense, and the way to keep a defense fresh is to own the ball and not let the other team do the same.

It also deprives the other team of scoring opportunities if they don't have the ball.



Again, that is a winning strategy, in any level of football. Where we got derailed this year was with the injuries, the defense that started out rough, lack of a legit franchise RB, and a freak injury to Ben on a sack that did not look any more vicious than the 46 per season he was averaging under Arians.

The gameplan was nearly flawless, the execution is where the failure was.



20th in scoring is two spots above where Arians offense ranked in its prime, if I am not mistaken. Keep in mind, when Arians took over, he was already an assistant for our team and did nto do a complete overhaul of teh playbook like Haley was expected to do upon arrival.

All things considered, our offense was clicking this year in a way it hasn't done in seasons, until Ben got hurt and the wheels fell off in KC.

"Instead of fearing the quick strike teams, they need to become one?" Isn't that what Haley is doing?

Hey riddle I agree with everything here. The offence was moving well until that KC game. Even before Ben was injured; KC pretty much shut down the Steeler offence. Which makes me think. This is a copy cat league. Are other teams doing what KC did in that game?? This is where Haley needs to start to adjust to try to kick start the offence because it has become a little predictable.

GoFor7
12-20-2012, 07:34 PM
You aver that the MAIN goal of this offense is TOP, but I have never heard anyone say that. Whereas, I have indeed heard them say that their main goal is to prolong BB’s career. Less sacks = goal achieved.

I avert it's the goal based off what I see. When 3 speedy receivers only run down field 5 yards, that should tell you a lot about this offense.

Last year's game against the Taperiots.... a good game, yes?

They kept Brady on the sidelines.

Yes, obviously, the difference was that the offense scored TDs (everyone agrees with that), but keeping the ball for longer is not a bad thing.

They actually let Ben beat the Patriots that time and didn't limit him to 5 yard passes. How about the Denver game? Offense possesses the ball for a long time, then Manning comes back and goes 80 yards in less than a minute, three times.

6-3 before BB's injury.

Scoring offense ranked TWO places higher than Arians offense, even after BB missed three games.

Still underachieving. Again, Arians had the 9th ranked offense in his first year. If the worst human being in the world had that kind of an offense in his first year, why can't Haley? No excuses. Maybe blowing up everything on the offense was the wrong move. Maybe instead the focus should have been on red zone efficiency as they were pretty good moving the ball in between the 20's.

teegre
12-20-2012, 07:51 PM
I avert it's the goal based off what I see. When 3 speedy receivers only run down field 5 yards, that should tell you a lot about this offense.



They actually let Ben beat the Patriots that time and didn't limit him to 5 yard passes. How about the Denver game? Offense possesses the ball for a long time, then Manning comes back and goes 80 yards in less than a minute, three times.



Still underachieving. Again, Arians had the 9th ranked offense in his first year. If the worst human being in the world had that kind of an offense in his first year, why can't Haley? No excuses. Maybe blowing up everything on the offense was the wrong move. Maybe instead the focus should have been on red zone efficiency as they were pretty good moving the ball in between the 20's.

FIVE YARD ROUTES
I will give you that. I’d like to see Wallace go deeper. But, if the goal was to keep BB upright, those short routes have kept him from getting killed.

Quick throws = less sacks = goal achieved.

TAPERIOTS
The point of me mentioning that game was that the offense controlled the clock & owned the TOP in that game. BB hit a bunch of short passes, with (yes) the occasional deep pass. But, the Steelers marched methodically down the field, while Brady stood on the sidelines.

Time of possession is not a bad thing at which to do well.

BRONCOS
BB missed a wide-open Heath Miller in the back of the end-zone; in fact, he hit the goal-post. BB also threw a pick-six.

My point is not to blame BB; my point is that BB was THROWING the ball.

The defense allowed Peyton to march down the field. The DEFENSE. How is that relevant to the offense??? How is Haley responsible for Demaryius Thomas’s long TD run???

RED-ZONE
Agreed. The red-zone scoring is still lacking. That comes down to execution. I recall vividly drops by WRs, WRs not getting their feet in bounds, and errant throws.

As Cosell said: the correct plays were called, but the execution is lacking (he cited fumbles).

RANKINGS
In 2007, BB was not injured. Santonio Holmes & Hines Ward were in their primes. FWP was running rampant. And, they played the NFC West (which was horrible). I would expect Arians to have a good year.

cowherpower
12-20-2012, 08:06 PM
I liked the way Haleys offense was progressing after about the 4th or 5th game. If I had any complaints they were and are, not enough shots down field with the deep ball, and running way too much on first down. Now as far as using Wallace as a deep threat I agree, but only to an extent. Using him too often, becomes predictable and will tire our true deep threat out during the course of a game. On the other hand his presence should draw a lot of double coverage which will open the underneath routes up more. Brown should be used for deep routes also to keep the secondary honest.


It's hard to throw the ball deep when you a)have one of the worst o lines in football giving the QB no time b)a QB who does not throw a pretty deep ball for the most part c) defenses not scared of running game. If Ben was better at delivering the ball in stride, those throws to Wallace may turn into big gains. Of course the receivers must actually catch the ball on those rare occurrences and not fumble the ball away. I find very little to fault Haley with considering what he is given. In years past I would have agreed that you couldn't put another QB in our system and have them do as well as BB. Now, I can think of about 10. That isn't because of Haley, it's just because Ben's skills are eroding and defenses are pretty much well versed in his play.

Wallace, from what I have seen is not a great route runner and he fails to fight for Ben's errant throws, unlike Brown who I have seen do it regularly. Despite everything, having a speed demon blowing the top off defenses is something all 32 teams could use. He will be long gone to another team next season and hopefully Gilreath can step into Sanders shoes with Sanders stepping into Wallace's.

GoFor7
12-20-2012, 08:23 PM
FIVE YARD ROUTES
I will give you that. I’d like to see Wallace go deeper. But, if the goal was to keep BB upright, those short routes have kept him from getting killed.

Quick throws = less sacks = goal achieved.

And this is why the Steelers are 7-7 - playing scared. Yes, Ben "could" get hurt. But the offensive line could also do it's job and pass protect. You don't minimize you're best weapon because you're shitting your pants about what could go wrong.

TAPERIOTS
The point of me mentioning that game was that the offense controlled the clock & owned the TOP in that game. BB hit a bunch of short passes, with (yes) the occasional deep pass. But, the Steelers marched methodically down the field, while Brady stood on the sidelines.

Time of possession is not a bad thing at which to do well.

BRONCOS
BB missed a wide-open Heath Miller in the back of the end-zone; in fact, he hit the goal-post. BB also threw a pick-six.

My point is not to blame BB; my point is that BB was THROWING the ball.

The defense allowed Peyton to march down the field. The DEFENSE. How is that relevant to the offense??? How is Haley responsible for Demaryius Thomas’s long TD run???

No one is saying the defense is blameless in that game, but it just goes to prove my point - TOP is not that important, and a defense can still lose a game in less than 25 minutes. When you worry about TOP, you're taking options away from your offense. The other team's defense knows Wallace won't be running deep routes, so you're just letting them stack the box. Predictable play-calling made it even worse. It was amazing Ben had such a good QB rating on 3rd downs in the Denver game as the pass rushers could just pin their ears back on 3rd & long.

RED-ZONE
Agreed. The red-zone scoring is still lacking. That comes down to execution. I recall vividly drops by WRs, WRs not getting their feet in bounds, and errant throws.

As Cosell said: the correct plays were called, but the execution is lacking (he cited fumbles).

RANKINGS
In 2007, BB was not injured. Santonio Holmes & Hines Ward were in their primes. FWP was running rampant. And, they played the NFC West (which was horrible). I would expect Arians to have a good year.

And the Steelers played the AFC West (shitty division except for Denver) and NFC East (overrated ESPN hype). Why can't they be better than 20th if that's the case?

teegre
12-20-2012, 08:43 PM
And this is why the Steelers are 7-7 - playing scared. Yes, Ben "could" get hurt. But the offensive line could also do it's job and pass protect. You don't minimize you're best weapon because you're shitting your pants about what could go wrong.



No one is saying the defense is blameless in that game, but it just goes to prove my point - TOP is not that important, and a defense can still lose a game in less than 25 minutes. When you worry about TOP, you're taking options away from your offense. The other team's defense knows Wallace won't be running deep routes, so you're just letting them stack the box. Predictable play-calling made it even worse. It was amazing Ben had such a good QB rating on 3rd downs in the Denver game as the pass rushers could just pin their ears back on 3rd & long.



And the Steelers played the AFC West (shitty division except for Denver) and NFC East (overrated ESPN hype). Why can't they be better than 20th if that's the case?

PARAGRAPH 1
6-3 before BB's injury.

1-4 since.

Looks like "playing scared" was working.

PARAGRAPH 2
BB was indeed passing in that game. The team did not convert.

PARAGRAPH 3
Those 2012 opponents all had sound defenses; the 2007 opponents did not. Plus, BB wasn't injured for three games in 2007. Hines Ward. FWP. Et cetera.

More importantly, as Greg Cosell said, the offense was on the right track... until the injuries.

SUMMATION
6-3... Greg Cosell's educated analysis means everything... BB was injured... repeat...

GoFor7
12-20-2012, 09:05 PM
PARAGRAPH 1
6-3 before BB's injury.

1-4 since.

Looks like "playing scared" was working.

PARAGRAPH 2
BB was indeed passing in that game. The team did not convert.

PARAGRAPH 3
Those 2012 opponents all had sound defenses; the 2007 opponents did not. Plus, BB wasn't injured for three games in 2007. Hines Ward. FWP. Et cetera.

More importantly, as Greg Cosell said, the offense was on the right track... until the injuries.

SUMMATION
6-3... Greg Cosell's educated analysis means everything... BB was injured... repeat...

You can quote this guy all you want, but what's most important: 7-7, 20th in scoring. No improvement from the last two seasons.

teegre
12-20-2012, 09:54 PM
You can quote this guy all you want, but what's most important: 7-7, 20th in scoring. No improvement from the last two seasons.

We shall have to agree to disagree.

You say: 7-7
I say: 6-3 before BB was injured
You say: 7-7

You say: 20th in scoring
I say: 18th in scoring before BB got injured
You say: 20th in scoring

You say: no improvement
I say: 18th > 22nd
You say: no improvement

You say: I have my opinions
I say: Greg Cosell has years of experience with analyzing film
You say: I have my opinions

GoFor7
12-21-2012, 12:05 PM
With all the talent on this team - 18th, 19th, 20th, 21st - still underachieving badly. Still using the WRs wrong when they're all only sent 5-7 yards down field. That actually increases their chances of fumbling when they get trucked by LBs. These guys are meant to outrun DBs, not brace themselves for LBs.

"But Ben could get hurt!" Yeah, or the line could learn to block better. Like I said, no one has won a super bowl playing chicken shit scared football.

Riddle_Of_Steel
12-21-2012, 12:19 PM
You can quote this guy all you want, but what's most important: 7-7, 20th in scoring. No improvement from the last two seasons.

Your problem is that you want to analyze and dig deeper when it benefits your argument, and then you step back and evalutaae the season as a whole when deeper analysis would break your argument.

The offense was 6-3 before Ben got hurt. They were 2nd in ToP, and Ben was THE 3rd DOWN CONVERTER. They were starting to put more points on the board and things were looking up.

Saying that the defense CAN lose the game even if the offense possesses the ball is more of an indictment of the defense's poor play to start the season, than it is against Haley's scheme.

Matter of factly, when your offense is 2nd in ToP, you could say the offense is carrying the defense by making them not even have to earn their paychecks when they only have to spend 20:00 - 25:00 minutes of the 60:00 on the field.

If the defense lets Peyton leap up the field for a TD in two passes and :25 sec, that is on them-- not Haley or Ben.

Riddle_Of_Steel
12-21-2012, 12:23 PM
With all the talent on this team - 18th, 19th, 20th, 21st - still underachieving badly.

If I am not mistaken, that is about right where Arians left off last year, and not by coincidence, our entire Oline is in shambles again. I see a pattern....

But again, they were ranked much higher in all those categories pre-Ben injury and pre-KC.

I know though-- you want to use the overall rankings instead of analyzing trends and curves in those rankings and how they have changed over the course of the season, because you would have no ground left to stand on.

Still using the WRs wrong when they're all only sent 5-7 yards down field. That actually increases their chances of fumbling when they get trucked by LBs. These guys are meant to outrun DBs, not brace themselves for LBs.

"But Ben could get hurt!" Yeah, or the line could learn to block better. Like I said, no one has won a super bowl playing chicken shit scared football.

But again, with no offensive line, and no running game to force the opposing defense to be two-dimensional, you are hanging Ben out to dry. And when Haley was hired-- the Rooneys made it quite clear that a condition of his employment was to lengthen Ben's career.

GoFor7
12-21-2012, 12:59 PM
Your problem is that you want to analyze and dig deeper when it benefits your argument, and then you step back and evalutaae the season as a whole when deeper analysis would break your argument.

The offense was 6-3 before Ben got hurt. They were 2nd in ToP, and Ben was THE 3rd DOWN CONVERTER. They were starting to put more points on the board and things were looking up.

Saying that the defense CAN lose the game even if the offense possesses the ball is more of an indictment of the defense's poor play to start the season, than it is against Haley's scheme.

Matter of factly, when your offense is 2nd in ToP, you could say the offense is carrying the defense by making them not even have to earn their paychecks when they only have to spend 20:00 - 25:00 minutes of the 60:00 on the field.

If the defense lets Peyton leap up the field for a TD in two passes and :25 sec, that is on them-- not Haley or Ben.

Exactly, and that's my point. The way these long, dink-and-dunk, short WR route drives are meant to help the team aren't working. If you're defense is blowing it being out there less than 25 minutes then TOP isn't the answer on offense, scoring as many points as possible in a quick manner is. The Steelers are still in a "defense first" mentality while they have a defense that is becoming less and less reliable.

If I am not mistaken, that is about right where Arians left off last year, and not by coincidence, our entire Oline is in shambles again. I see a pattern....

Uh-oh. Letting Arians off the hook for something? Better hope some of these posters don't know where you live.

But again, they were ranked much higher in all those categories pre-Ben injury and pre-KC.

I know though-- you want to use the overall rankings instead of analyzing trends and curves in those rankings and how they have changed over the course of the season, because you would have no ground left to stand on.

So they went from 18th to 20th after Ben went down? Wow! They were really running up that score before he got hurt! :coffee:

They've been underachieving all year.

But again, with no offensive line, and no running game to force the opposing defense to be two-dimensional, you are hanging Ben out to dry. And when Haley was hired-- the Rooneys made it quite clear that a condition of his employment was to lengthen Ben's career.

Then perhaps Artie should've made more demands for a better RB. Going into the season with only Redman and Dwyer was a huge mistake. There were options in free agency that the Steelers ignored. When the owner wants to put more emphasis on the running game, but doesn't get a better RB, that should tell you a lot about his football acumen. Just because Dan was a great owner doesn't mean Artie is just because they share the same last name.

As for Ben, he's being put in danger anyways. RUTM gets stuffed, bubble screens go nowhere. Pass rushers can then pin their ears back on third-down. You might as well let him do more on 1st and 2nd downs, cause asking him to wait until 3rd down won't make him much safer. Besides, actually sending WRs down field means there's less of a chance a safety can get into the box, or even join a blitz.

desertsteel
12-21-2012, 01:01 PM
and, as Cowherd says, the tape does not lie.


I'm not sure that Cowherd coined that phrase :D

As for Haley, if the players will execute, the playcalling will be fine.

GoFor7
12-21-2012, 01:10 PM
I'm not sure that Cowherd coined that phrase :D

As for Haley, if the players will execute, the playcalling will be fine.

Not when a deep threat is only allowed to run 10 yards down field. That doesn't open up much of anything for the other guys. When you keep them all 5-7 yards from the line of scrimmage, they're going to get hit by LBs - thus increasing the chance of fumbling. The Loose Change Crew already has the drops this season, don't need to increase their chances of turning it over.

desertsteel
12-21-2012, 01:19 PM
Not when a deep threat is only allowed to run 10 yards down field. That doesn't open up much of anything for the other guys. When you keep them all 5-7 yards from the line of scrimmage, they're going to get hit by LBs - thus increasing the chance of fumbling. The Loose Change Crew already has the drops this season, don't need to increase their chances of turning it over.

I agree that we need to stretch the field more.

FanSince72
12-21-2012, 07:20 PM
Greg Cosell was on The HERD (Colin Cowherd’s ESPN radio show) this morning. Cosell is a tape guru, who tells it as it is: no sugar coating; not stats; just tape… and, as Cowherd says, the tape does not lie.

Cowherd asked Cosell about the relationship between Haley & Big Ben.

Haley said that he talked to one of Big Ben’s former coaches, and that that coach applauded Haley for trying to lengthen Big Ben’s career. As that coach said, and Cosell agreed, “Even as big as Big Ben is, all of those hits take a toll.”

Cosell said that the plays that Haley was calling were working well (aside from the fumbles, which is another story in & of itself). They were keeping BB upright and not sacked… and BB & the offense was productive.

The problem arose when the O-line got injured/shuffled, and then the running game suffered, and BB got hurt, and they just haven’t gotten back on track.

But, Cosell was adamant that Haley was & is still making the right calls, but that injuries (O-line, BB), no running game, and turnovers have led to a slowed offense.

SUMMATION
Cosell averred that Haley is indeed making the right calls, in order to prolong BB’s career, as well as make BB & the offense better. .



Soooo, when do you figure the offense should start getting better?

It's funny that this Cosell dude points out:
"The problem arose when the O-line got injured/shuffled, and then the running game suffered, and BB got hurt, and they just haven’t gotten back on track. ", because I could say the same thing in reference to last season and the season before that and the season before that and so on. Yet in all those years I don't recall the offense looking as disorganized as we do right now and have for much of the season.

I like some of the things that Haley has done (or seems to be trying to do), but overall I really don't see all that much of a difference and in some ways I think it's worse. There doesn't seem to be any particular chemistry or evidence of everyone being on the same page. Sure, from time to time it seems like things click, but not so much that I get any sort of feeling of confidence about what I'm seeing.

GoFor7
12-21-2012, 09:27 PM
Soooo, when do you figure the offense should start getting better?

It's funny that this Cosell dude points out:
"The problem arose when the O-line got injured/shuffled, and then the running game suffered, and BB got hurt, and they just haven’t gotten back on track. ", because I could say the same thing in reference to last season and the season before that and the season before that and so on. Yet in all those years I don't recall the offense looking as disorganized as we do right now and have for much of the season.

I like some of the things that Haley has done (or seems to be trying to do), but overall I really don't see all that much of a difference and in some ways I think it's worse. There doesn't seem to be any particular chemistry or evidence of everyone being on the same page. Sure, from time to time it seems like things click, but not so much that I get any sort of feeling of confidence about what I'm seeing.

That's because this offense isn't built to the strengths of its players, it's built for:

1.) Playing not to lose

2.) Playing not to get Ben hurt by turning him into Mike Tomzack

3.) Babysitting the defense with TOP

The Steelers felt that Arians offense took too many unnecessary risks. Unfortunately, the Steelers have now gone to the extreme in the opposite direction by playing scared football. Dink-and-dunk could be justified if you actually took shots down field after suckering a defense in, or if you actually let your three speedy receivers run routes beyond 10 yards more often. But they don't do that in fear that Ben will get hurt or that they won't possess the ball long enough, even though it's already been proven that a) Ben can get hurt in this offense, and b) this defense can still blow a game when the offense owns TOP.

Perhaps taking a few more risks would result in a record better than 7-7 and an offense that actually maximizes its potential.

Riddle_Of_Steel
02-08-2013, 11:50 PM
That's because this offense isn't built to the strengths of its players, it's built for:

1.) Playing not to lose

2.) Playing not to get Ben hurt by turning him into Mike Tomzack

3.) Babysitting the defense with TOP

I agree they could have taken more shots downfield with Mike Wallace. More of that would make the opposing FS learn some respect.

But I do disagree with your constant assessment of them "playing not to lose" and whatnot.

I was very happy with Todd Haley's offense. I thought it was aggressive, yet balanced, and it used Heath properly. One area where I think it still needed some work, was in the red zone obviously. We were still not scoring enough points. But that doesn't mean they were playing not to lose. They did everything an offense can be expected to do to help an aging defense out-- call it babysitting or whatever. The truth is, our defense had some old guys, and ToP is the old guys' friend.

Under Arians, we used to try and go for the homerun, right away in the redzone. We'd waste downs with Ben trying to throw bombers into the endzone. Haley took things in a more conservative approach and wasted downs running the ball with mostly ineffective guys like Baron Batch and Rainey. Either way the results were about the same.

I recall reading somewhere that Ben's injury really hurt their long term strategy-- that was right around the time they were going to start opening up the playbook (unleashing hell?) to some goodies they had been saving specifically for late season. They had some new packages they had been practicing, but never got to implement because they ended up having to plug in Charlie Batch, and never got back in sync after Ben returned. A lot of planning had gone into those two back to back Ravens games, a lot fo work that got smashed by the injury bug. I really wish I could find that link now.

I am actually expecting big things from the offense this next season though. I think there are several things going for us:

a) another year in Haley' s system. Plays and routes will be more instinctual.

b) better (hopefully) offensive line.

c) ground game will be addressed (pls keep Osama Bindenhall).

d) maybe a reshaped WR corps that better fits Haley's system. Admittedly, Wallace does not really fit into a west-coast offense, which is basically what we are talking about here. We need guys who can make tough catches in traffic and that can get YAC. Danny Amendola might be a nice pickup if we could. I still say Wallace for Welker.

e) resign plexiglass. As long as he understands he is here to play a specific role, and not be a feature guy, we can come to an understanding. He is still a great redzone target. We need that height to offset Heath probably being out to start the year.

pczach
02-09-2013, 12:28 PM
I think Haley is a smart guy. I also think his playcalling was affected by the "new philosophy" as stated by the organization. It was obvious watching the games after Ben came back from the injury. Teams were jumping all the short routes. I think that they were trying to protect Ben by making him get the ball out of his hand quickly. I think that defenses smelled blood in the water with the ineffective running game, and the predictable quick short passes. You could see them jumping the routes,and that led to a few interceptions and a lot of incomplete passes and 3-and-outs. With a healthy O-line, this offense has a chance to work well with some tweaking and adjustments. I think they will get more aggressive with the routes and the playcalling this coming year. Mendenhall is the only back that has the speed to run outside the tackles, and we don't know if he will be around next year. We definitely need a running back that can threaten the edge and taking it to the house. If they get most of this done, they will be much more effective next year. The points will follow.

Gnutella
02-10-2013, 01:41 PM
I think Haley is a smart guy. I also think his playcalling was affected by the "new philosophy" as stated by the organization. It was obvious watching the games after Ben came back from the injury. Teams were jumping all the short routes. I think that they were trying to protect Ben by making him get the ball out of his hand quickly. I think that defenses smelled blood in the water with the ineffective running game, and the predictable quick short passes. You could see them jumping the routes,and that led to a few interceptions and a lot of incomplete passes and 3-and-outs.

This is exactly what I've been saying. Roethlisberger's injury resulted in a domino effect that caused the entire offense to collapse late in the season. Once defenses started taking away all the short routes, the passing game had no choice but to go more vertical. The problem was, Roethlisberger's throwing shoulder still wasn't fully healed, and it showed in both his accuracy (worse) and the velocity of his passes (lower). Injuries along the offensive line compounded the problem because the line often wasn't able to hold up long enough for anybody to get open downfield.

This is why the offense began to resemble "backyard" football late in the season: nobody could get open short, and pressure came before anybody could get open long. As a result, there was no way to keep defenses honest. They just kept crowding the line and taking away the short passing routes, which downgraded the running game from mediocre to bad, and made the passing game one-dimensional and unsustainable. And this is exactly why the Steelers need to draft a tall, strong WR: because sometimes a QB just has to heave the ball downfield and have a WR make a big play in order to get defenses to back off. It'll make the offense much more versatile and dangerous, especially the passing game.


With a healthy O-line, this offense has a chance to work well with some tweaking and adjustments. I think they will get more aggressive with the routes and the playcalling this coming year. Mendenhall is the only back that has the speed to run outside the tackles, and we don't know if he will be around next year. We definitely need a running back that can threaten the edge and taking it to the house. If they get most of this done, they will be much more effective next year. The points will follow.

A large, physical WR, and a new RB suited for "zone" blocking will help tremendously. Mike Wallace isn't physical enough, and Rashard Mendenhall has burnt his bridges in Pittsburgh.