Wasted Timeout Aside, Where Was The Urgency Earlier In The Drive?

While it is easy to point to the wasted timeout by Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger late in the loss to the Oakland Raiders as a bad time management situation, the offense also wasted another 44 seconds a few plays earlier in that same drive that nobody seems to be talking about.

Following the nine yard completion to wide receiver Antonio Brown, the Steelers offense was faced with a third down and one from the Raiders 31 yard-line. The subsequent play, a one yard run by running back Le’Veon Bell, began with 2:44 left on the game clock and it took the offense 34 seconds to snap the ball for the next play, which ended up culminating in a Roethlisberger sack.

Following the sack, the game clock ticked down to the two-minute warning and after 44 seconds were gone, the Steelers had all of one yard to show for their efforts.

Was a run really necessary on that third down and one? After all, it is four down territory and they were behind two scores. Why not something to the sidelines or further down the field. I am curious to know if Roethlisberger or offensive coordinator Todd Haley called that play.

Roethlisberger and the rest of the offense really showed no urgency inside three minutes left to go in the game and the wasted timeout a few plays later in the drive really doesn’t make one feel at ease when it comes to their ability to come back late in games moving forward.




  • Shannon Stephenson

    I remember when they ran that play and took sooo long to get the next one off. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. I have said this before but it needs to be mentioned again, this team lacks real discipline. I was crucified before the start of the season saying this team wasn’t ready for the start of the season and they were undisciplined and the truth shows up almost every week. If it was just one area that would be one thing but all area’s on every given Sunday just have plays that makes one scratch their head.

  • RedCarpetDefense

    This article and your comment hit the nail firmly on its head. I’ve seen more urgency from:
    – people running to a bathroom.

    -the neighborhood kids chasing down the ice cream truck.
    -an old lady trying to cross the street.
    -drivers doing 40mph in a parking lot ’cause they spot an open stall in the next row
    -a squirrel tryin’ to get a nut
    -a slug, snail, sloth, turtle

  • RedCarpetDefense

    Clock management seems to be the achilles’ heel for this team. Oh and mediocre teams are our kryptonite.

  • Curtis

    If and when we go to the hurry up offensive, why do we wait till the clock goes all the way down to 1 second before the ball is snapped. I though the point to “hurry up offensive” call a play while getting to the line make sure everyone is set and snap. Maybe I just view the whole concept of “HURRY UP” different.

  • TheBlitz

    You get the vote up for the good laugh.

  • Dr. Doom

    Haley needs to go

  • Jeff

    You’d think there would be some type of extra emphasis on time management in practice, ya know, since the Steelers have rarely led in the 4th quarter all this season… Most of the losses have come down to the wire too….

  • Fritz Baughman

    The urgency at the end of the 1st half was even worse. You want to discuss pathetic? How about this drive before the half. We’re at our own 20 yard line with under two minutes left in the half and Haley calls a g-damn run up the gut? Of course, Ben gets demolished on the very next play. It’s almost like they WANTED to lose.

    -1:49 Felix Jones rushed up the middle for 1 yard loss
    -1:22 2nd & 11, PIT19Ben Roethlisberger sacked by Lamarr Houston for 9 yard loss
    -1:15 3rd & 20, PIT10Ben Roethlisberger passed to Antonio Brown down the middle for 6 yard gain
    -1:08 4th & 14, PIT16Zoltan Mesko punted, no return

  • cencalsteeler

    Unfortunately, all of those points you mention Dave, are the result of a mismanaged team.

  • Brendon Glad

    Excellent point. The reason no one is talking about it is probably because we haven’t got around to it yet. There are so many to pick from, it might crash your website if we all talked about everything. We need to just pick a couple of our most agonizing ones at first. smh.

  • Brendon Glad

    I’m beginning to believe everything I see. I usually look in the 15-30 range at the draft boards during the college season just to get an idea of what we may be looking at. I’m ready to take it all the way up to 2 when I look now.

  • RedCarpetDefense

    Thx Blitz, at this point all we can do is laugh to hide the tears..!!

  • Fritz Baughman

    Tomlin’s track record against lowly teams is pathetic. He may win the majority, but barely. I remember 2007 when the Jets finished 4-12, but yet they beat us.

    In 2009 we lost to the 4-12 Chiefs, 5-11 Raiders (of course), and the 5-11 Browns. We also half-assed it to beat the 2-14 Lions, 28-20.

    In 2010: We should of lost to the 7-9 Dolphins on that controversial play near the end of the game. Remember that ridiculous game against soon-to-be 4-12 Buffalo? Buffalo receiver Stevie Johnson dropped that gift TD in OT when we played the Bills – a gift from the gods.

    2011: This is when Tomlin really showed his ineptitude. We needed a game-ending FG to beat Curtis Painter and the 2-14 Colts. We were shutout in the 2nd half as the Steelers struggled to beat Rookie Blaine Gabbert and the 5-11 Jaguars, 17-13. Again, we were shutout in the 2nd half as the Steelers scratched their way to a 13-9 win over the lowly 7-9 Chiefs, who were using their THIRD STRING QB -TYLER FREAKIN’ PALKO. The Steelers hung on to beat the 4-12 Browns 13-9 in the last game of the year. Tomlin made up for these squeak-out wins over heinous opposition by losing to Tim Tebow in the WC game.

    Anyway, you get the point. I don’t even want to look at 2012. of course, we have the Vikings and Raiders already in 2013. I would absolutely guarantee, that, if we played the Jags right now – they would win. It’s in Tomlin’s DNA.

  • psteelers

    I’ve said it time and time again, you never hear smart, intelligent, Coach on the field when black Jack Ben is being complemented. He’s not as sharp as we hoped. You ever wonder why he’s always snapping the ball with one second on the play clock about 97% of the time. He struggles reading defenses.

  • John Hinton

    Don’t forget to include the Titans loss Week 1…they’re on par with the likes of the Vikes and Raiders.

  • Dr. Doom

    Yeah he has been just awful terrible boo!

  • Dr. Doom

    yeah that was good and terrible

  • Fritz Baughman

    He looks slow. His urgency, his passes, his demeanor – slow. I flip over to other games and see the quick delivery and zip on the ball that other QB’s have. Ben looks like he aged 10 years in the last 10 months.

  • They also horribly mismanaged the time/playcalling before the half. Too many passes over the middle for less than a first down with under two minutes left. Too many mismanaged timeouts.

  • Yep

  • I think that isn’t so much Ben as the coaching staff. I think Tomlin is in real danger of losing the team. Too much talk without any substance to back it up. He can only say “It was my fault for poor preparation.” so many times.

  • It’s not just him. All of the coaches have been up and down all year. More down than up.

  • This is a poorly coached team, plain and simple.

  • The way they are playing, 3-8 looks realistic, though if they get their heads out of their behinds, they could creep back up.

  • SG

    They’ve always been bad at clock management, pretty much for all of Ben’s career I think. They got away with it before because they had playmakers on both sides of the ball to pull out wins. They don’t have the playmakers anymore and so their inability to correctly use timeouts and manage a game clock is finally sticking out like a sore thumb.

  • Dr. Doom

    Who told you that?

  • “I think” implies a personal opinion. It is what I have observed from watching the veterans repeatedly fail to get up for games that they should dominate.

  • HopalongCassidy

    This is a bad offensive football team that currently lacks the talent to be great or even good. They need a few new players and some new coaches before they will get back to winning form. Someone has to have the vision and guts to make the changes. Right now, I don’t foresee the Rooneys taking any bold action. Until they do, expect more of the same.

  • pdupuis

    In a little over 2 months he will be.

  • pdupuis

    I find it hard to believe that Ben is this bad, however I do believe he’s playing to get the OC fired & doing one helluva job. It happens all the time in sports; who knows, maybe Mario taught him a few things.

  • Rick M

    I agree that Roethisberger seems to just be playing out the string until he retires. There’s virtually no emotion after repetitive 3 and outs; he does minimal studying of photos on the sideline; and he has little to no urgency late in the game when urgency is required. Too bad, he was an elite QB at one time.

    Now, more often than not he just doesn’t seem to care a whole lot whether it’s a win or loss. He says the ‘right things’ after a loss, but on the field any sense of passion seems long gone.

    It’s not a big surprise; he said at the end of last year that he was pleased to finish 8-8 because one of his goals was never to have a losing season. You’d never hear a comment like that from a Brady, P. Manning, Brees, Luck, etc. An 8-8 season would drive them nuts.

  • Jefferson_St_Joe

    I thought they should have used a timeout prior to the punt after the Oakland 3rd down play with 5 minutes to go.. They let Oakland take a free 40 seconds there before the drive in question even started. The poor clock management is irritating beyond belief. No one ever answers it for either.

  • Buccos9

    With Ben the “hurry up” offence should be called the six-minute offence. There is just no excuse for the way they waste time near the end of games. And why not kick it deep in the last two minutes so if you do manage to hold them without a first down you receive the punt in decent filed position? The onside kick is a low percentage play.

  • ND_Steel

    Agree, I don’t think he does give a shit, b/c Steelers aren’t listening to him. Firing Bruce Arians cut the legs right out from under Ben. Right or wrong, you have to support your star players.

  • Ahmad

    I have said this many of time and will say it again. We run the slowest hurry up offense in the league. There is never any urgency from these guys to hurry get a play off and then quickly get to the next one. Brady would have scored twice in the amount of time it took us to score.

  • TheBlitz

    You couldn’t be more right about the abysmal lack of urgency.

    Last night I watched the tape again when Ben was arguing with the official on the face mask grab on Bell. After that incident, they went back in the huddle and the play came in with around 18 sec left on the clock.

    One would reasonably think that’s plenty of time to run the play for a desperate team trying to save their season right ? No! By the time they lined up 15 sec had expired on the clock and Ben had to call the time out. Nobody on the field was in hurry up mode. Alarming isn’t it ?