As badly as I want to be wrong about that statement, someone please tell me why it is inaccurate? The 2012 Pittsburgh Steelers entered this season with questions as does every team in the NFL, but we knew this team was going to be different. I know I for one couldn’t believe that the losses of James Farrior, Aaron Smith and Hines Ward would affect this team as they have and I don’t mean on the field.
This team lacks leadership. It lacks accountability. It lacks urgency and it lacks thought. And that goes for every man from the top of the organization to the bottom. The excuses are mounting and no one wants to hear them. Yes this team suffered greatly today because of the injuries to the secondary, but good teams overcome that. Furthermore, every team is dealing with injuries right now.
When a team is lacking its’ best players, the others have to step up. James Harrison stepped up at times today and so did Ryan Clark. Can anyone tell me where LaMarr Woodley has gone? I don’t believe he was in the same zip code as Tony Romo at any point in today’s game.
The ‘Young Money Crew’ is almost becoming its’ own punchline. If ever you could say one man cost his team a game today, you could probably point at Antonio Brown. His excellent 31-yard punt return nullified by a fumble when the team was up by seven. Another bone-headed play when allowed a punt near the two-minute warning to land rather than fielding it. It cost the Steelers 30 yards in field position. And the clincher was when he ran out of bounds allowing the Cowboys to have more time on the clock.
For Mike Wallace’s effort today, Ben Roethlisberger’s interception summed that up. As Brandon Carr struggled to get to his feet, Wallace stood there as if he were expecting an invitation from Carr to tackle him. And Emmanuel Sanders left the game with bruised ribs suffered on a play where in my opinion, he fumbled the football (it was ruled he didn’t complete the catch).
Where the hell would this team be without Heath Miller? All the guy does is make play after play. He blocks, he catches, he does it all yet he still finds himself playing second-fiddle to a group of guys more interested in what they do after the play rather than during it.
Complain all you’d like about Roethlisberger’s overtime interception. I admit, it was a poorly thrown ball. Way off line and much too far to the inside of Mike Wallace. The bigger problem was why was this team even in that situation? As far as I’m concerned the game turned in two specific moments. One of course was the Brown fumble but the other came near the beginning of the second half.
Pittsburgh had the ball at mid-field with a chance to put some points on the board. Even a field goal there would have been tolerable. Two runs then a poorly thrown dump off pass that probably wouldn’t have gotten a first down anyway and the opportunity was blown. What is it going to take for Todd Haley to realize this team needs to spread out the defense, dump this two-tight end crap and throw the football?!?!?
Of course the way the receivers hang onto it might steer one away from that but I digress…
If there are not problems inside the locker room then I would be surprised. Losing reveals character issues and I’m willing to bet there are several characters revealing themselves as I type. Ben is questioning the play-calling, (as he should) and I guarantee there is finger-pointing of one degree or another.
This team is starting to remind me of the 2009 squad that lost five straight, finished 9-7 and missed the playoffs. Of course the one difference is that those Steelers won their final three games and these Steelers need to win their final two.
While my heart tells me they can, my head sees nothing in them to make me believe they can even win one the way things are going. Mike Tomlin is captaining a sinking ship right now and I don’t see nearly enough life rafts for everyone over the final two weeks.
Marc Uhlmann writes for and co-owns www.steelcityblitz.com. Follow him on Twitter @steeldad and follow the website at @SCBlitz. He can be heard Mondays on Trib-Live Radio at 4pm ET talking Steelers.