The Pittsburgh Steelers continue to be uncharacteristically active in free agency, signing former Denver Broncos left tackle Ryan Harris to a two year $4 million deal yesterday. Harris started all 16 games last season and is slated to take over as our starting LT with Kelvin Beachum exiled to obscurity down in Jacksonville. I can’t say I know much about Harris but anybody charged to protect the blind side of the human statue that was Peyton Manning should be decent. It’s not like any lineman can hold a block the fifteen seconds it sometimes takes Ben to throw the ball.
That escalated quickly…
The first day of the 2016 NFL season came with an unprecedented frenzy of free agent activity. Surprisingly enough, the Pittsburgh Steelers even got in on some of the action. They didn’t make a splashy move involving a headline name but as we saw last season with DeAngelo Williams, sometimes it’s the smaller under the radar moves that provide the biggest dividends. Also seems like their salary cap situation is a tad better than we expected.
In honor of the quarterbacks playing Sunday, it’d be a shame if this game wasn’t sponsored by Campbell’s.
The Pittsburgh Steelers limp into Mile High Stadium to face the top seeded Denver Broncos in the Divisional Round of the NFL Playoffs. The Broncos have been something of a quiet rival for the Black and Gold over the years. While playoff games between AFC North teams are naturally heated affairs, we’ve seen the Patriots as our post-season nemesis over the years. In reality, the Broncos are right there with them.
Even Cinderella had to be home by midnight. The clock struck twelve yesterday for the Pittsburgh Steelers, falling to the Kansas City Chiefs 23-13 in quarterback Landry Jones first NFL start. Some of you might think this metaphor is directed at Jones who a week after playing nearly flawlessly committed three costly turnovers. It isn’t.
Nope, the coach that turned back into the pumpkin yesterday was the Steelers defense. Going into the year, nobody wondered how good they could be but rather if they could not be bad enough for the offense to overcome. Through the first six weeks they were a pleasant surprise, if not winning games then certainly being more of a help than a hindrance. Yesterday, that all went bye-bye.
Another week, another devastating injury for the Pittsburgh Steelers. I used to think Mike Tomlin‘s “Next Man Up” philosophy was a bunch of rah-rah b.s. As much criticism I send his way, I have to give Tomlin credit for never letting adversity rock the ship. Whether I believe it or not, the players seem to wholeheartedly embrace the idea Next Man Up no matter who they’re being asked to replace.
This past Sunday, the Steelers lost left tackle Kelvin Beachum for the season to a torn ACL. It was an ugly picture with his knee bending in a way a knee should not bend. Pretty much the second he left the field I figured he was done for. Only Ben Roethlisberger seems to be gifted with a Wolverine-like healing factor.
This is why I hate the preseason.
Nothing good ever happens. If the starting offense marches down the field and scores an easy touchdown, so what? Then the starters come out and you end up watching guys who are either about to be cut or are so far down the depth chart they only see the field in desperate situations. What’s worse is you actually pray for the starters to come out because as long as they’re playing, the only significant thing that can happen is somebody gets injured.
Guess what happened Sunday?
Pittsburgh Steelers Pro Bowl center Maurkice Pouncey broke his foot in yesterday’s preseason victory over the Packers at Heinz Field. It’s the second catastrophic injury for Pouncey in three years as his 2013 campaign ended after one quarter thanks to friendly fire from teammate David DeCastro. At least this time an opponent was responsible as Green Bay’s Ha Ha Clinton-Dix rolled him up from behind on a run blitz.
Two important things were learned from the Pittsburgh Steelers 30-17 loss to the Baltimore Ravens in the Wild Card round of the NFL Playoffs.
1 – The Steelers high-powered offense is a collection of burned out light bulbs without running back Le’Veon Bell.
2 – Whatever concussion protocols the Steelers have in place, they might want to look into changing them.
The second point became extremely apparent when Ben Roethlisberger‘s head bounced off the Heinz Field turf during the last of the Ratbirds five sacks. Ben went to the sideline while Bruce Gradkowski came in and calmly converted a 3rd and 21. After three plays from the Polish Rifle, Ben returned and promptly threw a game-ending interception into triple coverage in the end zone. I have to think he wasn’t playing with all his marbles when he made that pass because otherwise I have no idea why he’d throw that ball into a crowd of Ravens with literally nobody open.
Well, that was unexpected…
A week after a miserable showing against the Saints, the Pittsburgh Steelers went out and crushed the Cincinnati Bengals 42-21 to tighten the race in both the AFC North and AFC Playoffs. How convincing was this victory? So convincing Andy Dalton watched the final five minutes from the sideline after Marvin Lewis all but threw in the towel.
Of course, if the Black and Gold hold to 2014 form, I fully expect them to crap the bed next week in Atlanta.
Thank goodness for byes because I don’t think my blood pressure can take another week of this.
After playing the first two and a half quarters like a bunch of extras on the Walking Dead, the Pittsburgh Steelers rallied late to edge the Tennessee Titans 27-24. For a long stretch, it appeared we were headed for yet another instance of the Steelers losing to a bad team as has become all too common during the Mike Tomlin era. If you stuck around for ESPN’s post-game show, well, you were treated to the glorious sight of Ray Lewis losing every last bit of his street cred by wearing an Elmer Fudd hat. You also got a chance to see Steve Young react with extreme exasperation over the Steelers’ annoying habit of playing down to their competition.
Try watching this team week in and week out, Steve.
So this is what if feels like to have seen a UFO. Or Bigfoot. Or the Flyers win the Stanley Cup.
Here we are over twelve hours later and I still can’t believe what I saw yesterday afternoon actually happened. Is this real life? Is it just fantasy? I have no idea who those guys in bumblebee jerseys were but I’d like to see more of them.
The Pittsburgh Steelers, behind a record setting passing performance from Ben Roethlisberger, outgunned the Indianapolis Colts 51-34. The two teams combined for over a 1,000 yards of total offense. Big Ben became only the second QB in NFL history with 500 passing yards, 6 TD, 0 INT in a game. His 522 yards tied him with Boomer Esiason for fourth most in NFL history, thirty behind Norm Van Brocklin‘s record set back in 1951.