Why register with the Steelers Fever Forums?
 • Intelligent and friendly discussions.
 • It's free and it's quick. Always.
 • Enter events in the forums calendar.
 • Very user friendly software.
 • Exclusive contests and giveaways.

 Donate to Steelers Fever, Click here
 Our 2014 Goal: $450.00 - To Date: $450.00 (100.00%)
 Home | Forums | Editorials | Shop | Tickets | Downloads | Contact Pittsburgh Steelers Forum Feed Not Just Fans. Hardcore Fans.

Go Back   Steelers Fever Forums > Steelers Football > Pittsburgh Steelers

Steelers Fever Fan Shop

Doc's Sports Get FREE NFL Picks and College Football picks as well as Football Lines like live NFL Lines and updated NFL Power Rankings all at Doc's Sports Service.

Pro Bowl
8:00PM Eastern on ESPN

Thread Tools
Old 01-31-2009, 04:40 PM   #1
Head Coach
SteelCityKing's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: N.PGH, PENN
Posts: 1,697
Gender: Male
Member Number: 10886
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default No Mistake: 'D' is the Key to Victory

TAMPA - To some, the expression has become cliché.

To San Diego Chargers general manager A.J. Smith, it reflects his core belief on how to build a Super Bowl-winning team.
"Defenses win championships," Smith said Thursday in a telephone interview.

Arizona quarterback Kurt Warner is well aware.

He was starting for St. Louis in 1999 the last time the NFL's top-ranked offense from the regular season parlayed such success into a Super Bowl victory. But if linebacker Mike Jones hadn't made a goal-line stop of Tennessee wide receiver Kevin Dyson on the final snap, the Titans might have won Super Bowl XXXIV instead of the Rams.

The play also became a harbinger of things to come.

Almost every other Super Bowl champion this decade has fielded a suffocating defense or had its unit play like one in the Super Bowl. That includes the 2001 New England Patriots in their 20-17 upset victory over the Warner-led Rams in Super Bowl XXXVI. New England's defense stole the spotlight from an offense nicknamed the Greatest Show on Turf.

"I think about the game we lost more than any game I've ever played in," Warner said earlier this week. "We were expected to win, so when you don't, you feel like you miss an opportunity to make history. I'm going to do my best to make sure I don't have to think about this one too much."

It will require a Herculean effort.

Of the title winners this decade, only the 2000 Baltimore Ravens and 2002 Tampa Bay Buccaneers fielded defenses that can be considered at least as stout as the one Pittsburgh brings into Sunday's game at Raymond James Stadium. The opposing teams in those two contests (the New York Giants and Oakland) entered with offenses even hotter than Arizona's, having both scored 41 points in their respective conference championship games. Those same units were subsequently dismantled by the Ravens and Bucs.

With a victory over Arizona, this version of Pittsburgh's defense will earn a spot alongside the franchise's vaunted Steel Curtain of the 1970s. The Steelers finished the regular season ranked atop the NFL in most major statistical categories, most notably fewest points (13.9 per-game average) and yards (237.2) allowed. Pittsburgh maintained that momentum in two playoff victories, including a second-round rout of Smith's visiting Chargers..

"You must put pressure on the quarterback," Smith said. "We all know you can't let (Warner) stand around like it's a flag-football game. But if you don't get there (with pressure), what do you do? It's one of those fascinating things about this business.

"When it comes to winning championships, players are always first in importance followed by head coaches and coordinators. But then there are other things in the formula — injuries, who's going to make the big mistake? Usually at the end of the day, the Super Bowl winner finds a way to work through those things."

Pittsburgh's defense has been so dominant that the opposing unit is getting short shrift. But Arizona's No. 19 regular-season ranking doesn't reflect how well the Cardinals have performed in the playoffs. Arizona has forced 12 turnovers — including one returned for a touchdown by safety Antrel Rolle in a game-changing play against Atlanta — and shored up a secondary that allowed an NFL-high 36 touchdown passes in 2008.

"Guys earlier in the season were trying to make plays and a lot of times got out of their responsibilities," Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt said Friday. "What we realized was that if I do my job the right way, we have good enough players that those plays will come to us."

Such a postseason turnaround invokes memories of the 2006 Indianapolis Colts. That unit finished the regular season ranked No. 23 but began gelling during its playoff run.

Like the Cardinals, the Colts defense was treated like an afterthought compared to Chicago's entering Super Bowl XLI. But while Indianapolis quarterback Peyton Manning was named the game's Most Valuable Player, it was the stifling of Chicago's offense that led the Colts to a 29-17 victory. Colts cornerback Kelvin Hayden sealed the win with a fourth-quarter interception return for a touchdown, marking the fourth time in a seven-Super Bowl span that a defense put points on the scoreboard.

The 2007 New York Giants (Super Bowl XLII), 2005 Steelers (Super Bowl XL) and 2004 Patriots (Super Bowl XXXIX) also won their titles largely because of staunch defensive efforts.

"We just want to go out and match [Pittsburgh's] intensity," Cardinals defensive tackle Darnell Dockett said. "Anytime we have an opportunity to go against one of the top-ranked defenses, it's a chance to show people our defense isn't too bad either."

Recent history shows it will need to play even better if Arizona has a shot at pulling off a Super Bowl upset.
SteelCityKing is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-31-2009, 04:52 PM   #2
Bench Warmer
Boomerang's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: South ,Australia
Posts: 355
Gender: Male
Member Number: 7503
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: No Mistake: 'D' is the Key to Victory

Good article,our D is our ace in the pack and its going to win us a Superbowl.

"Don't doubt me, because that's when I get stronger.. ..Marvin Hagler
Boomerang is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-31-2009, 05:00 PM   #3
Team Captain
steveironcity's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: East Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 884
Gender: Male
Member Number: 1135
Thanks: 3
Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
Default Re: No Mistake: 'D' is the Key to Victory

The D needs to punish Warner, and we will win easy
Pittsburgh Pride!!!!

Steelers- 6 time Super Bowl Champions
Pirates- 5 time World Series Champions
Penguins- 3 time Stanley Cup Champions
Panthers- 9 time National Champions
steveironcity is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-31-2009, 05:07 PM   #4
Living Legend

Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Pittsburgh
Posts: 5,868
Gender: Male
Member Number: 3261
Thanks: 260
Thanked 695 Times in 331 Posts
My Mood: Brooding
Default Re: No Mistake: 'D' is the Key to Victory

If this Defense wants to prove it's the best and truly #1, it will carry the team to the Lombardi tomorrow night.

This D has a lot of pride, with a lot of players who have been here before. They know what's at stake.
Edman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-31-2009, 05:09 PM   #5
Living Legend
HometownGal's Avatar

Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: The Burgh
Posts: 21,479
Gender: Female
Member Number: 2413
Thanks: 0
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Default Re: No Mistake: 'D' is the Key to Victory

Originally Posted by steveironcity View Post
The D needs to punish Warner, and we will win easy
The best way to do that is to get the running game going, pound and wear down their line and score TD's while taking time off the clock. If Warner is standing on the sidelines, he isn't going to be scoring points.

"Anytime we have an opportunity to go against one of the top-ranked defenses, it's a chance to show people our defense isn't too bad either."
That's really all I can say considering that defense gave up an average of 26.6 ppg.

The Anti-Wahoo
HometownGal is offline   Reply With Quote


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:54 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Shoutbox provided by vBShout v6.2.1 (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2015 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
User Alert System provided by Advanced User Tagging v3.0.8 (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2015 DragonByte Technologies Ltd. Runs best on HiVelocity Hosting.
Navbar with Avatar by Motorradforum
no new posts