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Old 02-10-2013, 01:41 PM   #44
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Default Re: GREG COSELL: Haley & Big Ben

Originally Posted by pczach View Post
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.

Originally Posted by pczach View Post
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.
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