OK, I missed the JE about the Indy game afterward.
Here's the deal: The Steelers didn't run the ball, but its because they fell behind. Can't play a shootout vs. Indy. Similar thing happened with Cincinnati, except they had the game until they killed themselves. Bad special team play along with 4 turnovers killed the Steelers.OK, I missed the JE about the Indy game afterward.
Here's the deal: The Steelers didn't run the ball, but its because they fell behind. Can't play a shootout vs. Indy. Similar thing happened with Cincinnati, except they had the game until they killed themselves. Bad special team play along with 4 turnovers killed the Steelers.
So, what do I have to say? Well, the Steelers are playing like ass. Dick LeBeau blitzes, so most teams are playing max protect. This is a bad thing, but there are some positives. Ike Taylor, forced to start this year has really picked up his game. He shadowed Marvin Harrison and Chad Johnson in back to back games. Take away that fumble-up first play 80yard pass to Harrison, and he kept both players under 60 yards total. He'll be a serious asset next year. Bryant McFadden, a DB the steelers picked up this year (2nd round draftee) is coming into his own. Now playing the nickle-back, he has the ability to start in a year or two, making the entire secondary very strong and very young. I only have one problem. Chris Hope the FS. I was a big fan of his cause of his hard hitting, but the more QBs pick on him the more he shows that he can't cover well. A spot to be looked at this offseason. Which brings me to my next point:
When you go 15-1, you keep as many players as you can going into the next year so you can try to repeat. When you are hoping for other teams to lose to even GET into the playoffs after a good season, you look for change.
I see the following changes:
A shakeup on the offensive line. Look for a new RG, as Kendall Simmons hasn't been the same since being diagnosed with diabetes. LT Marvel Smith, once a probowler, isn't looking so hot (nor has his replacement, Trai Essex, but he has an excuse, as he's a rookie).
New starting WR: Antwaan Randel El doesn't deserve a bigger spot besides the slot. He can't handle the starting spot. Cedrick Wilson can get SO OPEN with that speed, but drops 80% of the balls thrown to him. Quincy Morgan, though, has been fabulous as a fourth reciever. Look for him to possibly take that starting spot (he came in after training camp). He's tall, quick, and physical... just a failed draft pick by the Browns.
RB situation solved: Honestly, Willie Parker had me sold at the start of the season, I didn't see much in the middle, and yesterday, except for coughing it up twice, he actually had some good runs. I say stay with him, and keep Duce on for 3rd downs. Drop Verron Hayes and I'm guessing Bettis is probably done. Draft a few backs.
QB depth: Hopefully we can score Charlie Batch again for a backup. Drop Tommy. We all saw how bad he's been... no reason to keep him around.
DL: Youth needed, possibly. Kimo Von Olehoffen is getting old, but his backups are young and may be ready to step up.
LB: Get rid of Clark Haggans. He's a good LB, but James Harrison is more than adequat and is tons cheaper. Larry Foote hasn't impressed me this year.
DB: The youth is looking good, but Chris Hope needs competition.
Coaching: Dick LeBeau will never get an bad mark for me as a DC, however Ken Wisenhunt has not shown me a good offense. Most of the big plays are Ben adlibbing, not what Ken Wisenhunt is producing. Maybe the Steelers WRs coach, (former browns OC) Bruce Arians could step up? If not, there's always Russ Grimm...
 - SD has to lose once and KC has to lose twice. Not completely unfeasable. KC has Dallas, NY Giants, SD, and Cincinnati. SD has Miami, Indy, KC, and Denver. Both tough schedules, and as long as the Steelers win out (not as easy as it sounds. Chicago, Minnesota, Cleveland, Detroit), they should get the wildcard.