It was a cold and windy day in Buffalo, also known as a day in Buffalo. The Steelers' offense had ground to a halt. Ben Roethlisberger stood in the pocket frozen with indecision, pumpfaking like he was the last guy left in a dodgeball game and didn't want the other side to catch his throw. Rashard Mendenhall coughed up the football on...guess what...a spin move! Chris Kemoeatu held on for dear life as he watched a parade of Buffalo Bills d-linemen pressure his quarterback. But then, Shaun Suisham walked across Lake Erie into Ralph Wilson Stadium and made Steelers fans forget all their memories of Jeff Reed, memories which Reed probably has forgotten after two weeks of binge drinking.
|The least amount of holding Trai Essex did all game|
All in all, the Steelers should have won easily, but ended up being lucky to win at all. It sets up a huge game with the Ravens next Sunday night, and while you can say a win is a win, there are significant issues with this team.
|Gene Steratore's 2nd cousin|
- The offensive line is in shambles. Flozell Adams is a turnstyle. Jonathan Scott should have "Practice Squad" on the back of his jersey. We can't imagine what next weekend in Baltimore will look like. On second thought, yes we can.
- It took 30 minutes, but the Bills unlocked the not-so-secret formula to exposing the Steelers defense: wait 30 minutes. If not for the spectacular Troy Polamalu and the unspectacular Steve Johnson, we're looking at a repeat of last year: second half defensive breakdown after second half defensive breakdown.
- One guy made big plays for the Steelers all day long: Ike Redman. Rashard Mendenhall - despite the fumble - remains under-appreciated. He's a horse. But it's reassuring to have a short yardage guy like Redman who makes you feel confident even when the box is stacked with 8 guys.
- CBS analysis Solomon Wilcots really brought it on Sunday. Late in the 4th quarter, when we were all really counting on his analysis, he observed that "the Steelers are running the ball now. That's smart, because when you run the ball, the clock doesn't stop. It keeps moving." That's why you want a former athlete in the booth at all times.
- One more thing about Shaun Suisham. Did Ron Cook mention he believes in God's will?
- Although you are undoubtedly used to it by this point, begin your preparations now for another week of drama surrounding Ben Roethlisberger. Clark Kent sustained a sprained foot in yesterday's game, and will no doubt milk that for all it's worth this week. We fully suspect that he will play in the game against the Ravens, but given that this is a rivalry game and on national TV, I wouldn't be surprised if Roethlisberger whips out (bad phrasing for a Roethlisberger story, sorry) his inner Paul Pierce and comes out of the tunnel in a wheel chair, only to magically show no ill-effects from the injury during the game (you know, unless and until he throws an interception).
|Scored 19 points in the second half of this game|