The Steelers beat the Atlanta Falcons 15-9 in the 1st game of the 2010 season. Below are my recap notes and nuggets I kept on the game along with my observations. I have much more coming on this game and am working through the night. These are initial reactions of mine as I am about to watch the game a second time and begin working up tape selections. Below are the notes I compiled throughout the game. remember these are initial reactions one time through the game.
I think you saw more reasons today why Dennis Dixon was behind Byron Leftwich in the pecking order. Very shaky at times and got away with a few. Needs to make a bigger jump next week on the road. Several low passes mixed with a few bad decisions. I have seen worse though and a win is a win.
Amazes me how people still bitch about Bruce Arians. No offensive coordinator is perfect and neither is Bruce, but overall he called a good game and the final run to a damaged side of the Falcons defense in overtime won the ball game.
Hines Ward is how old? All that guy does is make huge plays when they are needed. I hope the Hall of Fame voters get this DVD in a few years. Guy is no where close to being done.
I of course reserve judgment until I break down the offensive line on the film tonight, but Max Starks, Chris Kemoeatu, Maurkice Pouncey, Trai Essex anf Flozell Adams looked good for a newly formed line in their first start together. Props to new offensive line coach Sean Kugler. He had them mauling today for the most part. I have seen much worse.
I did not even know Trai Essex played today and that is a good thing. Yes, I knew he played, but was not his awful self.
If Max Starks misses time with an ankle injury, the Steelers should consider moving Flozell to the left tackle spot and letting Jonathan Scott work at right tackle. Another possibility would be to see if Tony Hills can preseason progress was a fluke or not.
Nose tackle Casey Hampton may miss a week or two with that hamstring injury. Worst thing the Steelers can do is to rush him. Chris Hoke played great in relief and is more than adequate. Ziggy Hood may be able to back up Hoke.
Speaking of Hood, showed great lateral movement and showed up today.
I warned you about Lawrence Timmons. He has arrived. Really understands the defense and covers sideline to sideline. Great game today.
Welcome back Aaron Smith and Troy Polamalu. WOW, just Wow! Yes, 2 players make a HUGE difference.
Renegade, Renegade, Renegade, Renegade!!!!! Oh mama, I\'m in fear for my life from the long arm of the law.
Keenan Lewis will be behind Bryant McFadden for a while. Sure Roddy White had a ton of catches, but he earned every one of them. Great passes by Matt Ryan. White hurt us, but did not kill us. He is a great receiver and BMac and Ike Taylor played very well.
David Johnson has learned how to turn people on the edges. He and Heath Miller parted the Red Sea for Rashard on the walk-off TD.
William Gay had a chance at two big plays today, but blew them both. I give him a C plus today. Not good, but not alful as the nickel role he is use to.
Isaac Redman has a great role on this team and plays it well. Great short yardage efforts.
Jeff Reed is lucky the defense saved the game. Hopefully it is out of his system.
Antwaan Randle El will not return a punt for a touchdown, but is solid back there. I wonder if Antonio Brown or Emmanuel Sanders would of fumbled that tough punt catch.
More as I catch my breath. Check back in a bit.