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Old 08-16-2008, 03:18 AM   #1
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Angry Harrison unhappy with Steelers' defense

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Linebacker speaks his mind after loss to Bills

TORONTO -- James Harrison does not seem to agree with the rest of his teammates. He is not buying the excuses that the Steelers' defense is not playing very well merely because it is the preseason and the unit is not game-planning for the opponent.

Harrison, a Pro Bowl outside linebacker and the team's Most Valuable Player last season, was upset after the 24-21 loss to the Buffalo Bills Thursday night and criticized the mindset of his defensive teammates for the way the starting unit has performed in the preseason.

So, while some of his teammates pooh-poohed the poor tackling and the two touchdowns allowed to the Bills, the third-worst scoring team in the National Football League last season, Harrison stood at his locker and warned that it is time for the defense to start performing before bad habits carry over to the regular season.

"We're going out there and treating the preseason too much like the preseason," Harrison said. "We're going out there and thinking everything is just going to come when the regular season begins and we're just out there playing snap for snap, getting our timing and not playing up to the level were capable of playing at. I don't feel that's OK."

The first-team defense was on the field for only one series against the Philadelphia Eagles and three against the Bills. But, on those four possessions, the defense has allowed a field goal and two touchdowns with scoring drives of 67, 70 and 90 yards.

The Bills made it look easy, too, rushing for 71 yards on two series and getting a pair of touchdown passes from quarterback Trent Edwards to tight end Robert Royal.

"You go out there and have two teams run the length of field on us three times out of four series, hell, yeah, that's concerning," Harrison said.

And Harrison didn't want to hear that the Steelers' defense intentionally showed little of its substitution or blitz packages against the Bills, using the nickel defense on only five occasions during the first three possessions.

On the opening scoring drive, the base 3-4 defense was on the field for nine of the Bills' 10 plays.

"I feel like our base defense is enough to do what we need to do," Harrison said.

"We're just not playing up to the level we're capable of right now. Something has to change."

After the game, coach Mike Tomlin criticized the sloppy tackling and said it was one of the reasons the Steelers did not use many, if any, of its sub packages.

"When you're not tackling, you got to play basic football," Tomlin said.

The problems on defense are merely a continuation of what happened toward the end of the 2007 season, even though the Steelers finished the regular season ranked No. 1 in the league in overall defense. They couldn't stop the run, they allowed too many deep passes and they had problems protecting late leads.

So far, they haven't used the preseason to correct any of the flaws.

Or, so it appears to Harrison.

"It's not just going to snap around and just come soon as September comes," Harrison said. "You got to go out there and play these preseason games like it's a real game, no matter how long you're in there. And I don't feel like we're doing that right now.

"We're going out there and getting our timing, getting our plays in and getting out. We're not playing or coming out with the same attitude we come out with in the regular season.

"You got to show something in the preseason. That's why we play the damn games."

http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/08229...d=steelers.xml
I know our special team is not that good. I mean they were as bad as before. And the offensive team is struggling. Last year's 47 sack, with Faneca out, things are gonna be as bad they were, if not worse, if it's not addressed & dealt with soon. But what the heck is wrong with our defense?
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Old 08-16-2008, 03:39 AM   #2
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Default Re: Harrison unhappy with Steelers' defense

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But what the heck is wrong with our defense?
it's pre season.

that's all

I love james enthusiasm, he wants to be better, he wants the team to be better, but fact is the players go as far as they are instructed by the coaches.

there's no scheming for the game, nothing special, so obviously there will be holes on the D.

is that a concern?

No, unless it continues come september 7. then there's a story. right now not so much

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"You got to go out there and play these preseason games like it's a real game, no matter how long you're in there. And I don't feel like we're doing that right now.[/B]
maybe rookies and young players trying to make the team. veterans and starters should avoid injury

The thing about harrison is he was an UDFA. He was cut what 3 times by the steelers? He fought his way to the league and he kept that attitude. nothing wrong with that. willie seems to be the same

anyway, who cares? the steelers are doomed (sarcasm smiley)
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Old 08-16-2008, 04:52 AM   #3
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Default Re: Harrison unhappy with Steelers' defense

I have to agree with what Harrison said I think they need to step up and play better in preseason so they can be prepared for regular season the bills drove withe ease on us in those two drives preseason or not we need to stop them.
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Old 08-16-2008, 07:53 AM   #4
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Default Re: Harrison unhappy with Steelers' defense

I love it!

I can't even begin to tell you how much it pisses me off when I see guys just dive at the legs of the ball carrier....They don't wrap them up at all. That sloppy chance-tackling bit them in the ass during the game at the Bills. Polamalu does that crap all the time.

WRAP....THEM....UP!!!!!!!!!
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Old 08-16-2008, 08:52 AM   #5
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Default Re: Harrison unhappy with Steelers' defense

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Originally Posted by Glace View Post
I love it!

I can't even begin to tell you how much it pisses me off when I see guys just dive at the legs of the ball carrier....They don't wrap them up at all. That sloppy chance-tackling bit them in the ass during the game at the Bills. Polamalu does that crap all the time.

WRAP....THEM....UP!!!!!!!!!
Iv'e seen quite a bit of that in our two games... it is indeed the pre-season, but the player do not get paid to hold that kind of attitude.
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Old 08-16-2008, 09:55 AM   #6
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Default Re: Harrison unhappy with Steelers' defense

I understand that it's pre-season, but there is no excuse for poor tackling. I applaud Harrison for stepping up and saying something.
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Old 08-16-2008, 10:00 AM   #7
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Default Re: Harrison unhappy with Steelers' defense

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I understand that it's pre-season, but there is no excuse for poor tackling. I applaud Harrison for stepping up and saying something.
Totally agree. Preseason is what it is.......but there's no excuse for the poor tackling.

James Harrison is normally a man of few words and speaks little to the press. It says alot that he has spoken out..........James was the team MVP last year and is stepping up as a real leader.

When James Harrison talks, people listen. Or else.
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"We're not going to turn our backs on him," Ward said. "We're going to treat him like our brother. We're going to accept him back and be very supportive of him and help him get through this. In this locker room, he's still our quarterback."
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Old 08-16-2008, 10:35 AM   #8
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Default Re: Harrison unhappy with Steelers' defense

I believe we have found our Defensive Leader. Thank God...who do we play next? Whoever they are, I pity the fools.
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Old 08-16-2008, 10:54 AM   #9
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Default Re: Harrison unhappy with Steelers' defense

Harrison taking a leadership role...I LOVE IT. What the man is saying is the truth...it's time to polish up these basic skills and put them to use.
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Old 08-16-2008, 10:56 AM   #10
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Default Re: Harrison unhappy with Steelers' defense

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Originally Posted by Dino 5 Rings View Post
I believe we have found our Defensive Leader. Thank God...who do we play next? Whoever they are, I pity the fools.
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"We're not going to turn our backs on him," Ward said. "We're going to treat him like our brother. We're going to accept him back and be very supportive of him and help him get through this. In this locker room, he's still our quarterback."
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