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2020 Week #9 GDT Steelers vs. Cowboys


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1 hour ago, Neumatic said:

I don’t know about that. 7 seeds now and they’ve talked about having an 8th seed this year...

and....if we end up 1 or 2 seed, then we will....play down to the competition again and the result will be?

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9 hours ago, August4th said:

on the bright side

TB who's supposed to be a contender like us struggled to beat the Giants last wk and is now getting blasted at home to a  Div rival.

 

That’s kinda what I was getting at last night. The defense playing the way it did last year gave me some hope. 
 

And what I’m seeing from the team this year is they can win in many different ways. They can win these ugly games, they can win the big ones, they can come back, they can hold off comebacks. That doesn’t mean I don’t have concerns. 
 

The offense is sluggish at times, the defense gets leaned on too much at times, while we have good backs we don’t have a reliable back, while wr have a deep we group we don’t have “that dude” at wr. 
 

I do wonder how different the complexion of last nights game would be if they called that DPI early or Ben and Chase connect early. I feel like our conservative nature on offense the last two weeks has emboldened the opposing teams to do some of these big plays on us. 
 

Lastly part of being undefeated is luck. Not every single win is going to be a pretty blowout and sometimes I feel like people on this forum wouldn’t be happy unless that was the case. Yes there’s downs. Yes it was an ugly win against an inferior opponent. But man we won a game we deserved to lose, we won a game we’ve lost in the past. And we’re 8-0. 

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On 11/7/2020 at 7:53 PM, warfelg said:

Then put him on IR since it's a two year deal.  No need to cut him in that case.

He was on IR and just taken off. The other concern may be the salary. The cap is going down in 2021 and this may also be a way to save from the two year deal. Again, the other may be that he wanted out. I am only speculating based on possible scenarios. We will find out for sure over the next few weeks because I am  pretty sure Wiz just isn't hanging them up for good. I would be surprised if that was the case without him making a statement. 

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I am beyond frustrated with Randy Fichtner. I really hope that there are no longer any people that will defend him. The continued failures that rear their ugly head game after game. Its absurd. How can a person not adjust? How does he not understand his own team? How does he not understand his own quarterback? Here are my venting thoughts:

Tomlin should tell him if he runs on 2nd and 10 or LONGER again...he is fired, on the field, on the spot. 

The trickery of McFarland or Samuels on 3rd and 1 in the red area hasn't tricked anyone and is 0-2 on first down attempts. 

Speaking of 3rd and 1....STOP PULLING GUYS. Its the NFL and we have Ben Roethlisberger. No ones worried about the backend and is crashing down as soon as their dude vacates. That power, counter, whatever kinda pulling play you want in that situation is going to net you 8 yards or -3 yards....and we don't need 8 on 3rd and 1. Stop the negative/neutral start plays on key situational football downs. You wanna run it? Throw in a wide receiver on a reverse action to hold the backside defenders. You want the receivers in to block to help for that big gain...BUT WE ONLY NEED 1. 

Talk to Ben about the deep ball. Please. It's bad. And I'm not just talking result of the incompletion. He isn't close on a lot of them. The way we are running the offense - 3 to 5, hitch, ball out is Drew Brees-esque...and to be Drew Brees on the "deep ball" you have to be pinpoint because separation doesn't happen deep until further down the field. Ben isn't being anywhere near accurate enough to handle that now, so take deeper drops, work more play action to delay it, or tell him to pat it before sending it. But even then he is throwing inaccurately - inside or outside - that it doesn't matter at this point. You need deep concepts, but someone needs to temper Bens expectations of how well he is doing right now -- and it has to be Randy. 

Please, please understand where you are having success. I am not sure anyone has talked about it this year, but Ben is old and missed an entire year of football for injury to his throwing arm (#breakingnews). Ben needs flow, he needs consistency, he needs easy throws to get into a grove. We don't really make it easy to do that. I have major, and I mean MAJOR issues with Randy in gameplanning for how we open games. We are bad. Here is the opening of our last 4 games through 4 possessions.

Cowboys: 10 runs, 11 pass, 0 points

Ravens: 9 runs, 12 pass, 0 points

Titans: 13 runs, 26 pass, 24 points

Browns (3 possessions): 7 runs, 9 pass, 0 points

Fun part of the browns, Possession 4: 2 runs, 5 pass, 7 points.

Anyone see a pattern? Balance is NOT our friend with Ben and the way he needs to get into a grove. Its a part of why we struggle early in games when we try to stay balanced. We need to be about 2:1 pass/run ratio early to let Ben work off rust and get going. We cant have failed drives, have him go sit down, and then come back out 15 minutes later just to have periodic passes again. It's either call plays to work ben into the game (when you do, you have success) or tell the 38 year old 16 year vet to change the way he stays warm on the sideline. 

Last point: Two games has seen JuJu targets in the first drive. Two. The game opening drive, that you practice for all week. Two. Two games with action to your best player. Two. I cannot stress this enough, out of 8 games played, the idea of getting the ball to your best player happened in two of them. 

 Against the Titans, JuJu was targeted 3 times on the first drive, and we scored 7 points. Against Houston, 3 times - 3 points. The other 6 games first drives: 3 points. 

Juju has been targeted for the first time in 3 games on the second drive: 17 points. 

There are 2 games in which JuJu's first target was came in the 3rd drive: 3 offensive points before that point, 0 points from those drives. 

There has been 1 game where Juju wasnt targeted until the FIFTH drive: picked up 24 yards, but no points. 

Moral of the story? Gameplan for your best players. Gameplan for something that fits your players. Understand your players and how they react. Understand where you are weak. And Fire fichtner. This exercise wasn't nearly as cathartic as I was hoping. 

 

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On 11/8/2020 at 8:12 PM, warfelg said:

You know...these are games we used to lose. So this is an up to me. 

I understand your point, but I can't recall the last time we played a QB3 with 3 or 4 reserve OL and a historically bad defence. Other than that, the usual playing down I agree with but this was excessive and pushing the boundaries and shouldn't have been. 

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Trap games happen for every contender. I feel like we get into out "Steelers tunnel vision" and don't see it happening all over the league constantly. Elite teams rarely lose to the garbage teams, but they often play down to them. I'm with @warfelg, these are games we normally lose. That we aren't losing them now, seems to show that we might actually be a contender. 

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3 minutes ago, MOSteelers56 said:

Trap games happen for every contender. I feel like we get into out "Steelers tunnel vision" and don't see it happening all over the league constantly. Elite teams rarely lose to the garbage teams, but they often play down to them. I'm with @warfelg, these are games we normally lose. That we aren't losing them now, seems to show that we might actually be a contender. 

I think the defense having playmakers that causes turnovers is the difference between this team and those tomlin teams that would lose these kind of games(09 when they did not have troy) and some of those teams from around 2013-18 that had defenses that caused no turnovers). we lose to Baltimore and Dallas without key turnovers and the games against the Eagles, Texans and Den are even closer without the defense getting turnovers. Remember how we lost all those close games in 2018? forcing just one turnover would of made the difference in most of them and we're probably the number 2 seed that yr instead of missing the playoffs.

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1 minute ago, August4th said:

I think the defense having playmakers that causes turnovers is the difference between this team and those tomlin teams that would lose these kind of games(09 when they did not have troy) and some of those teams from around 2013-18 that had defenses that caused no turnovers). we lose to Baltimore and Dallas without key turnovers and the games against the Eagles, Texans and Den are even closer without the defense getting turnovers. Remember how we lost all those close games in 2018? forcing just one turnover would of made the difference in most of them and we're probably the number 2 seed that yr instead of missing the playoffs.

Yeah, that's a really good call. Our defenses were always just one small tick below what they needed to be to carry the team. The offense, under Ben, at least over the last decade has been pretty feast or famine. When you have an offense like that, you need a defense that can win games. 

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