Today in “Least Surprising News Ever…”
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Byron Leftwich busted his ribs in Sunday night’s loss to the Baltimore Ravens. Gee, you don’t say? I wonder what gave it away. Was it the obnoxious NBC commentators zooming in on his pained expression after every play? Or was it the way he kept missing wide open receivers on throws even Tino Sunseri could make?
The only person at Heinz Field who didn’t realize Lefty was hurt was Mike Tomlin.
Leftwich will almost certainly join Ben Roethlisberger on the sideline as the team once again turns to Charlie Batch in this weekend’s match-up against the feisty Cleveland Browns. If Tomlin had turned to Batch at halftime on Sunday, we probably would be talking about the Black and Gold’s rousing victory. I’m on record as saying Chaz should have been starting all along. He’s a steady competent signal caller which is really all you want in a back-up.
Plus he won’t get hurt the first time he’s asked to scramble away from pressure.
The Leftwich debacle is the latest incident on the growing ledger against the idea of Tomlin as some brilliant coach. Who thought he was a legitimate back-up quarterback? Since being cut by the Jacksonville Jaguars, Leftwich has been plagued by a constant parade of injuries to the point he probably shouldn’t even be in the league. It’s pretty embarrassing when a supposed Super Bowl contender puts their faith in a guy who severely injures himself tripping over his own feet.
What’s even more embarrassing is Tomlin’s refusal to pull him when he was obviously hurt and ineffective. Tomlin continues to be one of the worst in-game managers in the league. What’s more, his parade of lies and deceptions are starting to finally catch up to him. I’ve been pointing out what a habitual liar he was going back to when I wrote for NPC but when a clueless rah-rah cheerleader like Bob Smizik realizes your press conferences are full of B.S. you’ve really been exposed.
Anyway, with Lefty down and out and Ben still on the mend, the Steeler need to bring in a back-up back-up quarterback. Jason La Canfora at NFL.com is reporting the team invited former OSU and Patriots back-up Brian Hoyer and former Eagle Mike Kafka to work out tomorrow and will sign one of them. What, Tomlin couldn’t find another injury prone African American QB to bring in? David Garrard is right there!
In other depressing news, Jerricho Cotchery also appears to have suffered a serious rib injury from that hit that laid him out toward the end of Sunday’s game. That by itself is bad news as the Cotch Rocket is a pretty damn good receiver who would be one of the top three for most teams. But what makes the news utterly miserable are reports the Steelers are looking to bring in another receiver to take his place.
Ordinarily, losing Cotchery wouldn’t necessitate adding another wide out because the team could just play David Gilreath. However, with Gilreath already active, bringing in another wide out means that Antonio Brown isn’t coming back anytime soon. Yes, that simple seemingly innocuous looking ankle roll two weeks ago probably is going to sideline AB this weekend and perhaps even longer. He might have a broken foot for all we know although getting truthful injury updates from Tomlin is harder than getting secrets out of the CIA.
Maybe the P-G needs to hire a really attractive brunette beat reporter to write a biography…
Our old friend Plaxico Burress is coming to town for a physical and work out tomorrow. If he hasn’t gotten fat and lazy when nobody wanted him over the off-season, all indicators are the Steelers will sign him. I like Plax, I advocated bringing him back a couple season ago when he was first sprung from the clink. At this point, I’m not sure what he can bring to the table. With the Jets, he wasn’t much of a open field threat, having lost much of his speed and quickness. He still has the size so he’ll be a good red zone threat and Todd Haley‘s West Coast style offense is probably the ideal situation for him so it wouldn’t be the worst signing. It’s still not going not be enough if AB misses significant time, though.
Share and Enjoy
Ummmm… Did somebody forget to tell the Black and Gold their bye week ended on Sunday?
The Pittsburgh Steelers put on a dull, sloppy, uninspired performance last night in defeating the Kansas City Chiefs 13-9. The teams got into a mini-Battle Royal during pre-game warm-ups and the Chiefs defense brought that fired up attitude into the game. If you’re a fan of offensive football, this was not a game for you as the bumbling Steeler offense couldn’t get on track despite the inept KC offense trying over and over to give them the game. Much like the Colts game earlier this season, the Steelers played down to the level of their opponent long enough that a team they should have blown-out like a birthday candle was in position to drive for the winning score in the final minutes.
The Steelers defense did all they could despite getting hit hard by injuries. LaMarr Woodley missed his third straight game while Troy Polamalu was lost on the first series. Once again, the reason for his absence is being listed as “concussion-like symptoms” which is Steeler-speak for “He probably has a concussion but we don’t want to make him go through all those baseline tests to get him back on the field.” Even without two of their top defensive players, the defense put on one of their better efforts of the year, holding the Chiefs to 250 yards of total offense and forcing four turnovers. Three of those came on interceptions, including one by noted stonehands Ike Taylor.
Considering the “pass” he intercepted more closely resembled a punt, I would expect Face Me Ike’s next one to occur sometime around 2013.
Share and Enjoy
Don’t make the Football Gods angry. You wouldn’t like them when they’re angry. Clearly, the NFL’s illustrious commissioner ran afoul of them with his harebrained proposal to increase the schedule to 18 games. And the Football Gods have shown the Ginger Dictator who’s boss.
A little less than a week ago, I featured a guest post by my good buddy Hennessey. The theme of his piece was, “What would the Pittsburgh Steelers do if they lost Ben Roethlisberger?” Stay calm, Steeler Nation, Big Ben is fine. However, that post turned out to be an eerie prediction of things to come for a number of other NFL teams.
Hennessey, if you’re reading this, hook a brother up with this week’s Lotto numbers?
When the story of the 2011 season is written, yesterday will be known as Black Monday. Two AFC teams with playoff aspirations lost their starting quarterbacks for the year. Matt Cassel of the Kansas City Chiefs suffered “a hand injury” which appears to be very serious. The Houston Texans’ Matt Schaub has suffered a Lisfranc injury which is a fancy way of saying he hurt his foot really really bad. Then there is the Dream Team, the Philadelphia Eagles, who revealed their quarterback had two broken ribs which would likely keep him out of action indefinitely.