Sunday, September 08, 2013

Steelers Week 1, Quick Thoughts

1. Since I've been following the team with daily devotion, they have been playing terribly (mid-2011). So, sorry Steelers fans, this all may be my fault.

2. More accurately, though, it's clearly the coaches fault. You can tell this because the defense is consistently good - because they have a hall-of-fame coach, and the rest of the team has been laughable.

3. If asked at the beginning of the year which players we couldn't lose I'd say, in order, (a) Roethlisberger (b) Polamalu, (c) Pouncey. Well, we still have 2 of 3. Sadly, Pouncey was the one I expected to actually play all 16 games.

4. The silver linings for today's catastrophic rash of injuries - 3 critical starters - are (a) we've so recently cut people that can be possible replacements that they haven't lost their conditioning; and (b) more importantly, since Tomlin never knows when to allow a starter to get healthy, since these guys are gone for the year, the team can actually try playing with one person for the whole rest of the year. This is especially so for the O-line. The line needs to work as a consistent stable unit, and past few years, Tomlin would toss people in and out based on their fluctuating health. So now, I hope, we can get some dude to be a center and not try different permutations every week, which would guarantee a year of failure.

5. Note, I only listened to the game live, so I don't know how bad they looked. My view that things may not be a total disaster could change when I see the actual game.

6. I'd like to remind everyone that we started the game with our starting running-back and our 2 starting Tight Ends out with injuries. And when Pouncey went down, that meant that every offensive plan of the pre-season went up in smoke. You won't have a running game, or decent passing, with an on-the-fly O-line. Yes, sadly, the Steelers (offensive) coaches just don't seem to know how to train the backups to take over. But it happened all last year (we started to suck when both Big Ben and Antonio Brown were injured; not to mention the standard o-line idiocy).

7. I keep harping on the bad coaching because when I see other top-tier teams play, they plainly don't suck like the Steelers do for the past 3 years. I saw Green Bay vs. SF today. What a difference! It's like the Yankees vs. the Mets. GB & SF don't have better players than the Steelers, they have way better coaching.

8. If we get our RB & TEs back, especially Heath Miller, and if the Steelers get the new center to train a week with the O-line to form a unit, I'm assuming we'll play better. That will be the test - if we still suck after those conditions are met, then we're lost.

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