The following is the premiere of a new feature here at Steel City Blitz where we turn the keyboard over to you the the fans. This is from Rich who is part of the fan club out in Oregon.
Ahhh the holiday season! Time for teams to grab the reigns and start taking a hold of their play-off roles. But not the Steelers. They seem to have forgotten how late in the season it is and how important these games are. Let’s take a look at the ugliness of last Sunday’s game.
The ‘Offensive Unit’ led by Big Ben. This is a highly talented squad. They outgained the Seahawks by over one hundred yards! The fastest wide receiver trio in the NFL couldn’t outrun a slow defense. Or catch a ball for that matter. Four dropped passes? Really guys? All the hype in the pre-season was the deep threat these guys represented. The running game does not escape scrutiny. A whopping fifty-eight yards does not leave an impression on anyone.
There are three things one must to do score: convert first downs to keep drives alive. The Steelers only converted five of eleven third down situations. The second is to make sound play decisions. An obvious fake field goal that resulted in a turnover is not conducive to scoring. Speaking of turnovers, Football 101 dictates that teams that turn the ball over lose ball games. The Steelers coughed it up four times! Ben left the game under concussion protocols. I would not have wanted to go back on the field if I was him either. This was an embarrassing effort.
Defensively there is not a lot to talk about either. Only two sacks by a defense that has tried to focus on getting to the QB all year. Ryan Shazier left the game with yet another injury. At halftime, the Steelers led by four points. In the second half, the defense gave up four scores, while the offense only scored three times. The big difference here is that the Steelers were giving up touchdowns, and scoring field goals. That kind of math does not provide for a sustainable game plan, if the plan is to win.
Down the stretch there are ponies, and rivals. We have the Colts, Bengals, Broncos, then the new Browns, and the old Browns. The Steelers usually shine at this time of the season, but the bulb looked dim on Sunday. After fighting off the depression of this loss, I was treated to a reminder of how the Browns are always the Browns. With just seconds left, they muffed a FG attempt and allowed the Ravens to recover the ball and take it sixty-eight yards for the game-winning score. At least someone showed consistency this weekend.