Tuesday, September 28, 2010

GTOPG: Steel Valley 38, Tampa Bay 13

By Finesse
  • Another very important win for the Steelers Sunday (but aren't they all?).  Chazz Batch reminded us all that it's always a good thing to play against a team with cornerbacks who deflect interceptions right into your receiver's hands for touchdowns.  Some could write this off as the Steelers beating a team that was a little in over its head at 2-0 and not put much stock in it, but I think games like this are important.  When you purport to be a good team, like the Steelers do, then you have to handle your business comfortably against teams that you should beat.  Last year, almost every Steelers' game felt like a nail biter and every 4th quarter lead felt like it was one Roethlisberger sack and two Ike Taylor dropped interceptions away from evaporating.  That's what was so nice about yesterday - once the Steelers got up 14-3, this one was in the books.  
  • Speaking of in the books, why on earth was Rashard Mendenhall still in the game in the 4th quarter with the Steelers up 38-6?  He had some nice runs during that stretch, but what exactly is it accomplishing to have your top offensive weapon churning into a pile of bodies for an 8-yard pickup in a game that is out of reach?  Maybe Tomlin is thinking that the Steelers have had their share of bad luck with injuries already this season, but this decision bordered on irresponsible.
More on the QB situation, fantasy football, and icing the kicker after the jump...

  • Mike Wallace is good at one thing - catching underthrown deep balls.  I'm not sure if he is just so fast that he outruns every deep ball thrown his way, but I can't recall him ever running under a deep throw.  Every time he catches a bomb he has to stop and face the quarterback to make the grab with a confused defender wondering why a quarterback would so woefully underthrow his receiver.  Whatever, it works.
  • If Leftwich is healthy next week, Tomlin must stick with Charlie Batch.  He threw two abominable interceptions, but was otherwise solid, if not very good.  Leftwich isn't going to bring anything to the table that Batch doesn't already have, so stick with what is working.
  • I hope I don't hear anyone this week saying, "Well, no one expected the Steelers to win 3 without Roethlisberger, so it's OK to lose to Baltimore this week."  First, it's never OK to lose to Baltimore.  Second, there is every reason to believe, based on performance so far this season, that the Steelers are a better team than the Ravens even without Roethlisberger.  Sure, 4-0 would have seemed like a huge bonus at the beginning of the season, but now it is to be expected.  
Other News
  • Maybe the Jets are actually good.  
  • I'm still not buying Mike Vick, but I'm in the aisle browsing.
  • One of the major drawbacks of fantasy football is rooting against players on your fantasy team's bench.  Take Artistry, for example.  He decided to bench Rashard Mendenhall this week, causing him to exhibit not-well concealed disdain every time Mendenhall had a nice run.  At that point, Mendenhall had no effect on the outcome of his fantasy matchup because he was already benched - Artistry simply wanted to be correct about playing Jahvid Best (ouch) over Mendenhall.  And I would have felt the same way.
  • Terrible performance by the Redskins, but Sam Bradford looks for real.  He's throwing to receivers who probably were on XFL practice squads, but he seems very capable.  
  • I watched the Pens-Blue Jackets exhibition on DVR on Sunday night and wasn't as down on Tangradi as Artistry.  He seems slightly disinterested, but he still generates chances.  Imagine if he looked like he was trying?
  • Why all the backlash against coaches for icing the kicker?  It's legal, it's effective, and while it does delay the game, it also builds up drama for what is usually a critical moment of the game.  I've started to hear tons of proposals to "address" this problem, but the bigger problem is actually with these purported solutions.  The most popular solution is to say if the play-clock goes under 10 seconds (or something close to that), then the defending team can't call a time out.  If this rule were ever applied, it would be a huge disadvantage for the defense.  What if the kicking team shifted to a formation and decided to go for it?  What if the defending team only has 10 guys?  Kickers know that timeouts are coming, so they should be prepared for it.  Let's find a new issue of the day.

No comments:

Post a Comment