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Steelers Vs. Eagles: Some Rapid Fire Conclusions


By Michael K. Reynolds

You can put as much lipstick on the pig of a performance the Pittsburgh Steelers produced against the Philadelphia Eagles but you’re still left with a slab of ugly bacon and a first class sizzling.

That whooshing noise you heard early in the first quarter was the expectations of fans for a rapid return to glory for the Black and Gold. Sure…everything can be fixed but it’s disappointing we are already breaking out the toolbox.

Here are some rapid fire conclusions that oozed unctuously from the Eagles game.

Welcome to Your 2014 Pittsburgh Steelers

It’s easy to say this was “just a preseason game” and try to dismiss this performance. But the top litmus test for a team’s preparedness for the upcoming season is the first half of the third preseason game. The argument of “it’s early, the team will get better” is always an interesting one because it assumes that none of the other 31 teams will bother to improve in the ensuing weeks and months. Hopefully, this was truly an anomaly, but if we’re being honest it’s some indication of what all of the offseason moves and training has brought us…and that’s an unattractive picture.

A Harp Seal Clubbing

Make no mistake about it, in what was the most important game for the Steelers since the season ended last year, that was one of the worst beat downs the team has absorbed in quite some time, regular or preseason. It wasn’t a case of some freak plays that caused the score to spike. It was a systematic dismantling of the Steelers defense with a matching ineptitude by the offense. If you double the score and stats of the first half, to compare starters vs. starters, the team would have lost 34-0 and been outgained 501 to 192 yards. The worst humiliation came when head coach Mike Tomlin kept his starters in during the third quarter only to have the whipping continue by the Eagles scrubs.

Tomlin’s Number One Goal in Trouble?

Tomlin stated that the team’s number one goal this offseason and through training camp was to be stronger on defense in sub-package play. With that being the case this game must have been extraordinarily disappointing for the coaching squad. The Eagles methodically ripped away at everything the Steelers threw at them.

No, Coach, Please Don’t Punish Me So…Harshly

One of the great disappointments of the game was to see running backs Le’Veon Bell and LeGarrette Blount back to business as usual after their huge act of selfishness. Tomlin decides to punish them by making them play more? Hey, if they are the type of players that feel “punished” by getting on the field they are wearing the wrong uniform. Imagine how pleased those running backs on the bubble were with that decision.

A Few Do-Gooders

  • Darrius Heyward-Bey deserves a spot and significant role with this team. He was the second best receiver in a Steelers uniform last night and he has a strong willingness and ability to serve on special teams. At 28, he is in his prime.
  • The first string offensive line can be relied upon in pass protection. They have given Ben Roethlisberger a pocket and time throughout the entire preseason.
  • Troy Polamalu with a bad hair day is beneficial for the team. Good to see Troy step forward and be willing to light the fire. His play in the third quarter was one of the few acts of inspiration.
  • The fact that Daniel McCullers is the most exciting player on defense is probably not a good sign. But after three quarters of watching the defensive line collapse it was enjoyable to see the push go in the other direction as soon as he stepped on the field. On one play, the big guy took both the Eagles left tackle and guard in tandem five yards into the back field. Obviously the Eagles offense wasn’t suited for too much time for McCullers, but they need to get his raw power and pocket-crushing ability in the mix.

A Few (Actually Many) Disappointments

  • Time to worry about Jarvis Jones. The lack of pressure was the biggest shortcoming for the Steelers defense.
  • The lack of adjustments by Dick LeBeau. He looked helpless on the sidelines.
  • The disappearance of Ryan Shazier. He was drafted by the team to flourish in sub-package play. Instead he found himself swallowed by single blocks the entire game.
  • Mike Mitchell may be the biggest disappointment to date after his big free agency signing. Missed tackles. Little impact on the passing defense. And someone needs to tell him that in Pittsburgh we don’t celebrate hard hits on opponents after they gain 20 yards on us unless we dislodge the ball. Quietly return to the huddle Mr. Mitchell.
  • The Maurkice Pouncey impact. Granted he’s less than one year removed from a serious knee injury. Still you had hoped for more in run blocking with his return and with David DeCastro at his side. Do we truly have two All-Pros working side-by-side? Let’s see some gaping holes to prove that point.
  • The Point of Emphasis. It turns out the only ones able to slow down the Eagles high-powered offense were the officials. And that was because they were so busy calling penalties on Ike Taylor. Let’s get the Zebras off of the field because it’s ruining the game Mr. Goodell.

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About Michael K. Reynolds

Longtime Pittsburgh Steelers fanatic and author of the acclaimed Heirs of Ireland series. MichaelKReynolds.com
  • B Nunez

    Shaun Suisham is scaring me already, there will be at least one game this year where he will influence the game either positively or negatively.

  • Burgh Ball

    and I’ll add the punting situation the less few years..

  • Eric MacLaurin

    Litmus test is a item that a person or group insists is included in anything they agree to. Abortion was a litmus test for republican candidates because it didn’t matter who or what they were about if the abortion question wasn’t answered correctly.

    The top litmus test does not mean the thing most correlated with and the use of the first half of the 3rd preseason game wouldn’t fit that definition either.

    “Just preseason” and “early” matter because it wasn’t a game where a victory was the most important factor or even one of the top goals. I’m much happier with the fact that we learned a lot than I would have been with a victory.

    I think my idea would be not that everyone gets better as a dismissal but that we weren’t good enough and some things need to be changed.

    Your finding of an unattractive picture is in fact what you get with wet paint. Especially in pre season games We have a team with a lot of new and young people learning to play in a new league and or together. If you think last nights game is representative of what we’ll be watching this year I have no doubt you are completely wrong.

  • Steelers12328882

    I actually thought Pouncey and the right side of the line played well except one play where the DE/DT ran a stunt and Gilbert got pancaked. Beachum and Foster had a much worse night.

  • Eric MacLaurin

    If one of your great disappointments of the game was not seeing the coach punish some of the players and thus the team why are you here? Are you a completely detached observer or the fan of another team?

  • SteelersDepot

    Wound a little tight, are you?

  • steeltown

    Something tells me we come out week one and bust Cleveland in the chops.

    …guess it could be wishful thinking though too

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    Here are the real conclusions:

    1) Our front 7 defenders do not get consistent pressure on the QB.

    Why is that? Is it because our players are not skilled enough to get off blocks? Is it because we are not tenacious/emotional enough? Is it because we don’t blitz enough? … I believe it’s all of the above.

    2) LeBeau needs to alter his scheme of CBs playing 10 yards off the WRs.

    You cannot touch WRs after 5 yards. But you can touch them within 5 yards. If you jam them correctly two things happen. First, they don’t separation so quickly so they don’t look as open so quickly to the QB. He must wait an extra second. Second (pertaining to point one) it gives out front 7 an extra second or two to get to the QB. That FORCES mistakes.

    If LeBeau is not willing to adapt, a change in DC is needed. I’m not saying LeBeau sucks or his schemes suck. I’m saying this one particular area needs to be tweaked.

    3) Our OL does not dominate the running game.

    When you spend two mid 1st round picks on interior OL they better look like Bigfoot in the run game. DeCastro looks solid but I wouldn’t call him physically dominate. Pouncey looked very average. And do we even need to talk about the other 3.

    To have a dominate run game you need OL who “lock on” to opposing defenders and physically MOVE THEM where they don’t want to go. We don’t have that right now.

  • Bill

    Everything was bad for the Steelers last night but the worst thing was the defensive front. The first string line got blown off the ball all night. There is no quick fix for that because who they have is who they have with the exception of Keisel. Shazier must learn how the shed blocks but in the 3/4, the D-line is supposed to keep 300lb offensive linemen off of the will linebacker. The D-Line sucked and I doubt if it can be fixed unless Keisel is Houdini.

  • Eric MacLaurin

    :)

    The podcast discussion on litmus test set me off & I was waiting for a match.

  • JohnB

    Im kind of glad we had a game like this. Against a top notch offense. Even though they want to write off “preseason game” or “vanilla playbook” I’d rather they have a game like this and adjust than a average win and think everything is fine.

  • Sri N

    It wasn’t great – but I think you are probably over-reacting a bit. Teams don’t game plan in the preseason – and often don’t show much in the way of anything exotic on defense (tough to criticize Lebeau for not making adjustments). I doubt the Steelers keep force feeding Marcus Wheaton in the regular season. Ben didn’t have a great game either – which rarely happens. I would relax – I really don’t think you will find out much about this team until after 4 or 5 games. If someone has the time or inclination – I would also be curious if there is in fact any correlation between winning your third preseason game and regular season record (I highly doubt it).

  • Steelers12328882

    Anyone that’s still really mad from last night I think you should watch the game again. Sure, it’s frustrating to watch but things don’t look so bad the 2nd time around. The worst part is when we go down 24-0, because the Eagles are throwing fresh backups at us while our starters on defense look to be just giving up at that point. 1st half is not so bad even though we get our butts kicked. Ben was off here and there, but he did get some pressure on those throws. WRs and RBs didn’t do so bad and OLine was good overall. I’m not sure what to say about the defense. The Eagles get the ball out super quick and were just making a lot of plays. I don’t think the DLine was as bad as everyone is saying. Mike Mitchell didn’t play that bad either beside one missed tackle I noticed, but not very impactful overall. The most disturbing thing to me was the play of Timmons and Shazier, but we know those two can play and will certainly have better days. I don’t know what to say about Jarvis Jones. He seemed ok at first, besides not being able to beat an All-Pro LT, and he should never EVER line up in the middle of the field again, but he just seemed to get worse as the game progressed even against the backups. Cortez, Ike and Gay didn’t have the best night either. Really, I’m glad I watched the game again. I thought it would be horrible, but there’s some positives in there. Just a good game by the Eagles. Can’t take that away from them.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    I appreciate your right to an opinion but your “eternal optimist” position on every single Steelers issue is getting really old IMO.

    The Steelers looked TERRIBLE last night against the Eagles. That is the reality. How you can watch that game and say you get feeling the Steelers will come out strong in game one is truly baffling to me.

    I mean seriously, I’m not trying to attack you personally but what insight are you trying to provide with your comments? It seems like half of your posts are “I hope this guy does well” or “I’m excited about this guy.”

    We all do. We all HOPE the Steelers do well. It would just be nice to hear you post an accurate realistic critique every once in a while that adds something constructive or even controversial.

    Again no offense intended but come on, man.

  • Roger (G.)

    Your 3rd point has me thinking…wouldn’t it be something if McCullers came in as an eligible player and the team just runs behind him thus “ramming” the football down the opposition’s throat? The thought of that makes me smile.

  • NinjaMountie

    I’m not jumping ship on this team yet. We have a lot of new faces in there and they were playing a very good team. Jarvis Jones has me ready to yell bust though. I haven’t seen any change in his ability to get pressure from last year. He still looks small and too weak to handle the opposing teams OT.

    I think Ben had a horrible game, but I’m not worried about him at all. He’s had these games before and came back fine.

    Suisham is scaring the heck out of me. He needs to figure this out.

  • JohnB

    I liked this for point #2…that playing off coverage isn’t going to work against teams like the Eagles, Broncos, Pats, etc. They have fast receivers that can accelerate, we need to slow them down and mess up their rhythm so we wont have to worry about them getting behind us. Im not ready to throw Lebeau under the bus yet but he does need to make better ingame adjustments. preseason or not.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    That’s actually not a bad idea. in goal line or short yardage situations for example. The one thing he can do is grab onto a guy and move him backwards.

  • steeltown

    You obviously overlook a lot of my posts.

    When did I say they didn’t look terrible? Sorry if I get the feeling like we’ll rebound and beat up on Cleveland…. guess I’ll jump off the bridge with everyone else…

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    Agreed. Look at the Seahawks defense. Look at HOW they dominated the Broncos. They jammed their WRs all day and turned loose the front 7 on Manning.

    Look at how much that affected the Denver offense. You have to PRESSURE these guys into mistakes. Not hope for mistakes.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    Perhaps. But I read a lot of them too, because you post something on almost EVERY SINGLE THREAD.

  • AndyR34

    Actually, you are incorrect about a litmus test. It is merely an indicator…not an absolute. Your reference to the political usage is incorrect because their usage is incorrect. As such, if it is supposed to be an indicator, then one needs to be quite concerned about the Steelers ability to compete at the upper levels of the NFL…nor did the OP indicate that a victory was the most important thing to be gained last night. Now you may be very happy with the fact that you learned a lot last night, but I suggest that you would in the minority of Steeler fans. That said, I would agree that we can hope that we have “a team with a lot of new and young people learning to play in a new league and or together”…much like many of the other also-ran teams in the NFL. I expect their hopes of growth equal ours…and I have seen nothing to indicate that this coaching staff can acclimate new/young players faster than any other staff. Thus it is difficult to argue that we are going to improve at a faster rate than others. And lastly, I think that last night’s game may be indicative of how we match up against the better teams in the NFL…certainly not how we match up against the also-rans. We will probably be competitive in those games.

  • steeltown

    It all starts up front, they had a dominant front 7 last yr

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    This is a very accurate eval IMO. There is no quick fix for getting blown off the ball. A lot of that is skill/strength/technique. That takes years to master and some guys never get it. Look at Ziggy Hood.

    To me the bigger deal is the lack of ferocity. A lot of our guys look like they lack fire and I think a lot of that comes from our coaching staff. Tomlin is pretty chill. LeBeau is pretty chill. Lake is pretty chill. Butler and Mitchell are a little more animated but overall our staff does not fire these guys up like Cowher did.

  • Steelers12328882

    I like point 2. The off coverage drives me crazy, but I don’t think that’s what killed us last night. Maybe in Cortez Allen’s case. Point 1 is very valid too, but I also think Philly did a great job of being decisive and getting the ball out fast. Point 2 could probably make a difference with Point 1 lol. I disagree somewhat with Point 3. Although we didn’t do much I like our line, and I think Pouncey played well last night. The problem with the line last night was the side we don’t have much invested in, but overall I think they did ok last night.

  • JohnB

    lets not turn on each other…cause if we do, the terrorists win.

  • superfan

    In 2004, I saw Carson Palmer put up 200 yards and 3 first-half TDs in a 31-3 Bengals preseason win over the New England Patriots. In a game where both teams played their starters for the first half, Cincy looked like a Super Bowl contender and New England looked like an 8-8 team at best.

    New England won the Super Bowl that season. Cincy bungled it’s way to 8-8.

    Since that day, I’ve never been worried about a preseason performance.

  • Pete Johnson

    Rapid fire conclusion – This isn’t a very good roster. It isn’t a very good team. As much as most around here want to hope for the best, while ignoring GLARING holes and question marks all over the field on both sides of the ball. And this isn’t a one preseason game reaction, I have been saying it for months. They simply aren’t that good. Haven’t been in 2 years going on 3.

  • NinjaMountie

    People are overreacting. When the Ravens had their SB year they lost 43-13 to Houston and 34-17 to Denver in the REGULAR season. They also lost to Detroit in the Preseason 27-12.

    The Giants the year before that got drubbed by NO 49-24.

    My point is that sometimes there are blow outs in this league that may not happen the next time the teams meet. Were there a lot of positives to take away from last nights game….no. That’s the way it is in competition sometimes…you just get whipped. Keep Calm and Chill Out and lets at least get to the regular season before we give up on the team.

  • Doug

    How dare you bring common sense into this discussion?

  • AndyR34

    I’m not sure the OP or fans are “jumping ship”, but I think that they are understandably disappointed: 1st team defense couldn’t stop their 2nd team offense…1st team offense could barely move the ball vs. their 2nd team defense. That is not the Kool-Aid that has been passed around here…with all of the self-congratulations about how great our new/young players and rookies are. I also think that maybe some folks..myself included…thought maybe Bell might come out and have a “make a statement” game…didn’t happen (not saying its all on him, as we don’t have any WR’s that can block their great-aunt Hattie). This team is at best a work-in-progress and I challenge anyone to give good reasons why it is a better team than last year’s team. I haven’t seen any.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    I disagree. It’s the Seahawks secondary that ALLOWS their DL to pin their ears back.

    Chancellor, Thomas, Sherman, Maxwell, are the best starting DB unit in the NFL.

    Avril, Mebane, Bryant, Bennett, are nowhere near the level of talent in the secondary. They get pressure because they just pin their ears back and go. Knowing the LBs and DBs
    will back them up if something gets by them.

  • steeltown

    Preseason posts are neither here nor there, most debate at this time of year is about what we ‘hope’ might happen and who we’re ‘excited’ for… again, I’ll try harder to appease your sensibility

  • WilliamSekinger

    I agree for the most part with the exception being I don’t believe this game was any kind of barometer for the Steelers sub packages. For the most part, they were in their base defense all game. Now, that doesn’t excuse the beat down they received, but you can’t judge sub package football when they didn’t even run it.
    I hope the coaching staff does not allow any of the defensive starters to play any football next week. The starting defense needs to chew on this whooping until the 1st game of the season. I hope the starters will take all their frustrations out on the Browns, and continue having a chip on their shoulder when they visit the Ravens. This team needs to start fast, and what better way than to deny the starting defense any chance at redemption until the season starts?

  • Eric MacLaurin

    Are you playing a chemistry game or do you have something that applies to this context?

    If Litmus test meant indicator it would not change what you take from the game in any way nor should it add or reduce concern. Someone saying X is a litmus test for Y doesn’t make it so. One game will never prove anything about the results of another game.

    Did you have something to back up your defination?

    They don’t call it a litmus indicator. A test usually indicates something that you pass or fail. Can you show me how this test is used to indicate something versus test for something?

  • Douglas Andrews

    Remember guys were on the same team and it’s just preseason. Plenty of time to get it turned around. Better to see some deficiencies now that to come out against Cleveland and lay a egg like last night. Gotta side with Steel on this one they’ll get it together just give them time I know this should’ve been a dress rehearsal for the opener but it gives them time to fix some issues on both sides of the ball.

  • NinjaMountie

    I would have had a hard time believing the would finish 8-8 and just miss the playoffs based on their start to the regular season last year. We really don’t know anything about this team yet, good or bad, except maybe who will make the roster.

  • steelersfan

    This post says it all. Very concerned

  • http://www.facebook.com/STEELMANIAC STEEL MANIAC

    Wow! Even though the final score wasn’t too bad, we were clearly not ready for the offensive pace the Eagles had in store for us. After a spectacular first showing by LB Shazier last week, I found it hard to locate him on the field during last night’s game. There was a definite drop-off in his play and one can only hope that last week’s performance by Shazier in his NFL debut wasn’t just a fluke. Did coach Tomlin’s failure to praise the young player effect his mindset after last week’s performance? Only Shazier knows the real answer to that question. That being said, I was hoping that what happened to Bell and Blount wouldn’t effect the heart and minds of the other players on the team, but once again, one can only wonder. Ben’s passes were not on the money as they were in the first two preseason games and the rest of the starting offense didn’t fair too well either. I wonder if Ben lead Bell over the middle on that one pass knowing he was going to get clobbered. Maybe he did it to, in a way, say to Bell, “Hey kid, wake up!” I hope this whole Bell / Blount situation doesn’t hamper the team throughout the season as the Steelers were looking, up to this point, to be a highly revamped team that really looked like they had their minds totally focused on having a much better season than the last two. Only time will tell. Hold on to your towels, people. It’s going to be a wild ride!

  • Roger (G.)

    I was waiting for a performance like this from the Steelers…warts are never pretty. I’m very interested in how they respond week one.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    I will admit Philly did a great job of being aggressing and decisive. Very difficult to stop and offense who is playing that quickly.

    Brady/Manning/Brees have been doing it for years. And yet they don’t always the win the Super Bowl. Why is that?

    I believe it goes back to point 2. You have to disrupt their quick hitting routes. Then the QB has to hold the ball longer and things start falling apart.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    LOL

  • Gautama Om

    I’m sorry but MOST of our problems including your disappointments on defense (JJ, Mitchell, Lebeau and Shazier) stem from the most important part of the defense and that is the DL. This team is in serious trouble if we continue to be porous vs. the run. It has a huge domino affect on the LB’s and DB’s. No way Lebeau can use the tricks up his sleeve if the DL plays like this, zilch.

  • cencalsteeler

    I’m not going to put all the blame on Suisham just yet. A new snapper and a holder. I have no idea how Suisham kicked that last extra point. The snap and hold were scary bad, but he got it through.

  • AndyR34

    All good points..except that I haven’t seen anyone “give up on the team.” I said it two years ago and last year and Pete said it just below: “This…isn’t a very good team” Might they improve? Possibly…they didn’t two years ago, seemed to improve last year. Hard to say what will happen this year. The way I look at all of this…apart from the hyperbole that is used in place of facts…is that some fans are half-full glass people with a Pollyanna-ish outlook. Others are a glass half-empty, skeptic bunch. I tend towards the latter and readily admit it…others, not-so-much. I have been a Steeler fan for almost 60 years…this is NOT the worst team that I have seen. It is also not anywhere near the best.

  • SteelCity

    Post what you want sir…it’s all good

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    I tend to agree a little more with Pete on this one. And I don’t think it’s over-reacting. Who are the elite players on this roster? Who are the guys on this Steelers team that you can honestly say are top 3 in the NFL at their position?

    I get the whole loyalty thing. But I also try to see things accurately/unbiasedly. And I just don’t see the level of elite talent we’ve had in years past.

    Look at our pass rushers. Who on our team is going to wreak havoc on opposing QBs? Jarvis Jones? Jason Worilds? Timmons? Cam Thomas? Steve McClendon? Even Cam Heyward? These guys are okay but none of them are pass rushing demons IMO.

  • Jason

    I’m considering drastic measures if I hear someone call Lebeau’s defensive scheme “exotic” again. Please tell me when was the last time we saw anything exotic out of this defense? The blitz schemes are old and everyone has figured them out. And hey how about not lining up 15 yards off the WR when we get no pressure and the qb and wr just play pitch and catch all day. Just kidding on the drastic measures thing but this D is anything but exotic.

  • steeltown

    Wont argue the talent in the secondary, but pressure up front is how you rattle Manning and they get a lot of it with just 4 guys (or a 5-2) allowing others to do their thing

  • Jacque Strappe

    I’m sorry, but Mitchell’s problems have nothing to do with the DL.

  • cp72

    You know the whole thing looked kind of vanilla and uninspired. I understand that it’s not a game you do a lot of game planning for, but our effort was despicable. They just got whipped physically by the Eagles offensive line.

    I am going chalk it up to an anomaly, but we can’t wait 6 games to get it going again. Our beginning schedule is favorable and we need to take an advantage of it.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    Andy, I couldn’t say it any better if I had a week to plan it so I’ll just say…

    AMEN.

  • NinjaMountie

    I get where you are coming from. I,myself, am a “wait until I get a good long look at the glass” kinda person. Definitely agree with you, this isn’t the best or worst Steeler team I’ve seen.

  • cencalsteeler

    LeBeau looked like a genius a few years back when we befuddled New England. It’s like he bottled it up and is saving that plan again for a rainy day. Even last year the big discussion was why he went a different direction playing NE differently. If I remember correctly, it was because he thought Bill would’ve prepared for that scheme from before. Well, let’s uncork that bottle again, because this scheme sure isn’t working against these type of offenses.

  • steeltown

    No doubt, we need to come out swinging

  • Addison

    We been seeing this for years. Base 3-4 can’t stop the pass. Nickle can’t stop the run or the pass. I have no clue how they can fix this. The whole things is depressing.

  • steeltown

    Yea I remember that, played press and man coverage, we were capable of it then. We should do it more NOW

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    That’s the one point that continues to baffle my mind. LeBeau went in a different direction one game and beat the crap out of Brady. Then the next game went back to his old ways and got thrashed.

    What goes through his mind when he watches those two tapes?

  • Steel PAul

    Nice breakdown Michael.

    It’s looking like perhaps another slow start to the season.

  • Bill Sechrengost

    I think their defense will be a work in progress. They have so many new or newer players that it will take a while to gel together. I do think they will get better. We’ll just have to hold our noses until then. The players they have will just have to get better. No one is going to ride in on a white horse to save the day.

  • Roger (G.)

    W-w-w-wait..!! We weren’t ready yet..!!

  • frednash

    Good idea!

  • Sri N

    Fair enough – I was just saying that most defenses in pre-season games are vanilla for all teams not just the Steelers. They don’t really scheme for anyone or make any adjustments. The main point is not to read too much into a preseason game…

  • AndyR34

    I am a chemist by education and career: “Litmus is a water-soluble mixture of different dyes extracted from lichens, especially Roccella tinctoria. It is often absorbed onto filter paper to produce one of the oldest forms of pH indicator, used to test materials for acidity. Blue litmus paper turns red under acidic conditions and red litmus paper turns blue under basic (i.e. alkaline) conditions, with the color change occurring over the pH range 4.5-8.3 at 25 °C. Neutral litmus paper is purple.[1] Litmus can also be prepared as an aqueous
    solution that functions similarly. Under acidic conditions the solution
    is red, and under basic conditions the solution is blue”.

    Note the statement: “the oldest forms of pH indicator”

  • 2443scott

    this almost made me forget about last night giveing me 1 headache for another

  • eric

    Let’s just flat out say what everyone in Pittsburgh is thinking after the first 3 games… Shamarko Thomas should be starting. Plug him at FS and let him do his thing

  • Eric MacLaurin

    You feel like the intent in the article was that he was doing a PH test and it came up acidic? I don’t need the nursery school detail for each post BTW yes would have worked.

    Wouldn’t the chemistry definition mean that he didn’t get an indication but in fact made an actual connection to how bad the team would be as a direct result of this test?

  • cencalsteeler

    Michael, we are two peas in a pod. Your article was dead on, though I’m not quite as high on DHB as you are. I think the optimism we all share during the offseason has come down to a reality check as we now see us match up against opposing teams. The truth is we have transitioned into a younger squad. It’s the evolution of today’s NFL. The reality is, like every team that transitions, we are going to go through our fair share of growing pains and that’s where we stand today. Old Mr. Reality slapped us in the face last night and brought us all down to Earth. More than likely, we will see improvements through the season, and hope for no devastating injuries. But, truth be told, just because be bleed black and gold doesn’t make us immune to not having to bear a few years of growing pains as this team transitions into what we all hope for is another SuperBowl caliber team in years to come.

  • Bill

    No game plan is going cure the D-line problems! I understand that the complicated blitzes won’t work in pre-season but when the players are overwhelmed physically you can 86 the game plan.

  • JohnB

    but…but…Da Beard is back!

  • cencalsteeler

    I’ve been calling for Heyward for two seasons now. He’s athletic and has history with the position. McCullers would be a stretch, imo.

  • steeltown

    Yea I saw Wing conversing with Bryce Davis on the sidelines after one punt, think he wasn’t unhappy with the snap

  • sean mcmartin

    They just don’t have the talent to run with the big dogs. defensive line sucks, lack of pass rush again this year. and ike taylor holding on to guys when they run past him. big third and long conversions seem like pitch and catch. secondary sucks. Its going to be a long season, they are at least one or two drafts away from being a top tier team.

  • Jacque Strappe

    AMEN

  • Eric MacLaurin

    When you do a litmus test what does it indicate? high or low PH in little detail.

    If you tested for PH what would it show? an exact reading+/-

    The difference is how exact the results are. Not that the results may or may not have any connection to

    If a team plays badly in a preseason game what does it indicate about how the team will play in the regular season. little or nothing.

    Do you feel that the results of a litmus test compare mathematically to the results you get predicting regular season results based on preseason?

    The bottom line is you have a chemistry litmus test and a standard used version of the term. Both indicate situations where you observe something and draw a conclusion. There isn’t any way to use that term under either definition to connect preseason play with regular season play.

    I’m not wrong because I ignore the unrelated root of the popular term.

  • joed32

    Those running backs on the bubble aren’t going to make the team. They had their chance in the first two game and showed nothing.

  • Lucus Rodriguez

    Not as concerned as everyone else. The offense didn’t make it a point to get brown or archer the ball because they didn’t want to show their hand in a preseason game. when the offense uses little wrinkles to get the ball to brown and archer the offense will be fine. Seemed to me like the game plan was to get wheaton and Ben on the same page not a bad idea considering he will be the number 2 WR

  • Mark

    You’re right Sean, they suck. I think one or two drafts is may be an understatement of this teams decline since the Green Bay SB loss. Personally, I see this as a team that needs a full scale house cleaning, from GM to Coaching Staff to player personnel. A lot of folks on here speak highly of the job the head coach has done. Reality is, it has been a downward slope of not replacing the talent Cowher developed and left him. “But Tomlin is 1-1 in Superbowls” some here will argue. WHO CARES. He and his staff are the issue.

  • Lucus Rodriguez

    Agree. I would love to see what the defense would look like with him and Troy patrolling deep. The Seahawks basically use two SS with Chancellor and Earl Thomas

  • Lucus Rodriguez

    Am I the only one thinking Cortez Allen needs to be moved down the depth chart and not up list of priority resignings this off season? he plays too far off the line and people just abuse him. Id go with will gay on the outside and S. Thomas as the nickel.

  • sean mcmartin

    That’s what they said last year at 0-4 in pre-season.
    I was geared up to see what they can do. Now I know we do not have a super bowl contender on the field. The off season brought hope, reality brought me back down to earth.

  • Alan Lockwood

    Your list of disappointments is concise and spot on- JJ needed to get stronger- so far there is no eveidence of that- Shazier was back to earth so to speak- but he will learn and grow into his role I think- Agree completely about Mitchell- I dont see anything speciel at all- and agree again on Pouncey- this lines pass blocking does seem better- but still no holes for the backs- even Barry sanders needed a hole to run through sometimes

  • sean mcmartin

    You said it. Ill never forget last year, when this team showed up to Monday night flat and without emotion and allowing players to push them down after plays without fighting back. Bill Cowher had his guys fired up to play and got the best out of them. Tomlin does not have that skill. guess a few years of mediocre play is acceptable to the Rooney’s . Since they will never admit they made a mistake hiring Tomlin.

  • Matt Manzo

    It is a whole lot different than the Steelers football we’re used to watching. Some of us don’t even know what rebuilding looks like. I guess we should be looking at whose improving and learning and not look at the scoreboard, for awhile?!

  • steeltown

    Yes and honestly it’s too early to tell, we went 6-2 down the stretch last season if I remember correctly and there’s no way replacing Clark, Sanders and Hood has made the Team worse. I may be a glass half-full kind of guy and to some people it’s probably too early for any sort of optimism after that butt whuppin, but I don’t believe the performance last night was indicative of what this Team is capable of

  • sean mcmartin

    your right Matt, It’s just hard to watch. with all the issues they have. I would start the change by getting a new head coach that has fire breathing capabilities. This team needs a strong leader who knows Football and has the ability to motivate people. This team does not seem to play hard for Tomlin.

  • steeltown

    I wouldn’t move him down the depth chart, but im sure not giving him an extension at this point (unless it reflects the level of play, meaning low Team friendly deal)

  • steelster

    Refrigerator perry says that is my job.

  • sean mcmartin

    I think your correct Mark, Tomlin knows he does not have what it takes and has surrounded himself with veteran coaches. Tomlin is not suited for this job. he would be great as a PR guy.

  • Steelers12328882

    Just re-watching the backups. Not only were Timmons, Shazier and JJ disappointing early, but Vince Williams, Chris Carter and Garvin played pretty bad when they came in too. Chris Carter is just absolutely horrible. He gets swallowed up on every play.

  • Bill

    This was a great article; No fluff, just the truth.

  • Mark

    Talks a good talk, but crawls instead of walks…….

  • steelster

    Refrigerator perry says that is my job

  • SteelerMike

    Don’t think Cowher actually fired up his team so much as he helped assemble teams with fiery players (that blended well with his persona). Tomlin is concerned about assembling teams with “pedigrees”.

  • steeltown

    I noticed So’oto played A LOT of special teams..that could be a good thing in regards to securing a roster spot, but im not trying to read too much into it especially considering the overall poor performance of the Team. But, I would love for him to beat out Carter.

  • Runner1967

    Pouncey and Decastro played well not sure what you saw.

  • http://www.michaelkreynolds.com/ Michael K. Reynolds

    I am writing an article on just that subject! We are two peas in a pod.

  • RW

    I didn’t understand why they gave him a 6 yr extension based on 1 good year. Not a spectacular one, but a good one.

  • Doug

    Earl Thomas is a prototypical FS. Not sure where you get him being a SS from.

  • Slab

    this.

    Last year the Pats lost their 3rd preseason game (the same one where all the starters play lot’s and it’s the closest thing to a real game) to the Lions. 40-9. They still were able to go 12-4 in the games that counted.

    Ben had a bad game. They are unlikely to win on the road against a playoff team if Ben plays that badly. However, it’s not likely he will play that poorly most games.

  • Luis Garcia

    The whole defense was out-smarted. I am hoping this is a matter of team-jelling. These guys are inexperienced and just bonding.

  • Lucus Rodriguez

    Coming out of college he was a SS. Was drafted as a SS and has the body type and skill set of a SS. That is where I “get” it.

  • Ellwood Davis

    Running a defense with two down linemen is not a remedy for stopping an NFL offense. They ran all over us in that defense, which fails to prove its worth in either passing or running situations. We need to keep three down linemen in on most downs, and put our defense in a position to succeed.

  • pat

    I tell you I personally believe Gilbert has looked like our best o-linemen this preseason

  • Steelnads

    ‘Cowher had his guys fired up to play and got the best out of them..’ yep, right up until the playoffs. And as far as the Rooney’s acceptance of mediocrity is concerned — I recall a three year stretch where his teams couldn’t get into the playoffs with a ticket. That said, I completely comfortable blaming Roger Goodell for everything.

  • pat

    Not to mention to my knowledge we didnt do much if any no huddle this game. Im ok with the offense just a little worried about the D

  • Matt Manzo

    I’m worried about player development, too.

  • Lucus Rodriguez

    Delusional

  • pat

    We basically almost have all new position coaches this yr how are the coaches the problem they didnt all of a sudden forget how to coach

  • Mark

    No, Lucas, its called realistic. Thinking this team is championship caliber is delusional.

  • Josh Knepshield

    Dear Michael K. Reynolds,
    It’s preseason. Remember how dynamic the 1st team offense has been almost all preseason? Remember how everyone was saying it may be a “special” offense? I swear some people’s opinions are so fluid that a single bad performance makes them question an entire season. As for the defense and Lebeau looking “helpless,” do you really believe that? They were showing NOTHING. They played a somewhat basic defense. It was extremely vanilla defense. Why would they show what they plan to do in a meaningless exhibition game that only really impressionable people would think truly matters? Guys, take it easy. Calm down. Put the pitchforks and the baseball bats away. It’s preseason. As long as no one gets hurt, I could care less if we lost 102-3.

    From me

  • charles

    Sean, I can’t agree with you….yet….
    Tomlin, in his six years has fielded more than one team that did not look prepared for the buzz saw that hit them. That is bothersome. The eternal hype of LeBeau being a defensive genius just got thrashed by David. The Philly offense called a lot of plays that appeared designed specifically for the 3-4 defense. In that, I mean one objective of the play was to get our LBs flowing a certain way and then throw or run behind that. Chip Kelly prepared for LeBeau very well. I could go on about how LeBeau’s defensive philosophy takes our 3 downs out of the play or how a 3-4 will NEVER win the LoS. But right now we have to hope that he has a plan B. Because that is where you are spot on, if not corrected, the others will copy cat and not just SB but a 500 season may again be the reality. Sanchez just sitting in the pocket going through all his reads TWICE is infuriating.

  • Nolrog

    That was an unpleasant game to watch. I hope Tomlin got his early season disaster out of the way now, and not in game 1 or 2 this year.

  • charles

    Panthers and Cravens in the first 2 of 3 may not be so easy.

  • charles

    I am sorry SSB, that is not correct analysis

  • Buccos9

    I find it baffling given that he has two big corners in Allen and Taylor who should be able to play press coverage. As for the D line, put McCullers in there at NT. Casey Hampton used to say he didn’t need to learn much in scheme – just plug up the middle and occupy two blockers. McClendon is getting blown away. To my mind, what we saw is the result of the coaching philosophy that NT aren’t needed like they were before the new passing offenses arrived. I don’t agree. if you can’t stop the run, you won’t stop anything.

  • charles

    That was not LeBeau, that was Ben controlling the clock on offense.

  • charles

    Michael, please write an article on how the 3-4 can win the LoS. Then one on how when taking your 3 down linemen out of the play by engaging blockers can be anything but stupid.

  • Ike Evans

    i really am not seeing the issue in the run game other ppl are seeing….these guys are getting the hard yards….4 yards and a cloud of dust…I dont really see the problem with that…other then that….WHEW! they look sloppy and bad….cant get any worse then how they looked against the eagles…glad we got that out the way….alot of concerns ALOT…lets see how these guys react…..
    Didnt like the Mike Mitchell Move…i said that from the begining…the draft was LOADED with Safeties this year…LOADED…and to this point he is WEAK as hell…all bark and only a little bite..

  • charles

    Why couldn’t we blow the Eagles out? Average my a**.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    Josh. That is a fair point. It is pre-season. And I suspect the coaches are holding back their “good schemes” to some degree until the regular season.

    But what about the lack of pass rush moves? What about the lack of getting off blocks? What about the lack of opening up holes in the run game? Do you think the coaches instructed the players to suck at those things as a decoy?

    Honest question… Which do you think is more likely? That an 8-8 team (over the last two years) continues to look like an 8-8 team? Or that once the regular season starts we suddenly explode out of nowhere and look like a playoff team?

    It’s easy to say “calm down everything’s fine” when people get frustrated. But that’s what people said two years and we went 8-8. That’s what they said last year and we went 8-8. At what point will you be willing to admit there’s a problem?

    (Serious question. I’m not being antagonistic.)

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    It’s a very good point. Neither Taylor or Allen are blazing fast. Why not play to their strengths?

    They are tall and scrappy. Let them use that to press opposing WRs at the LOS. Then they won’t HAVE TO cover as much deep down the field.

  • charles

    It does appear Steeltown, that we were outcoached. And that seems to be happening a lot with Mr. T. And not prepared for in game decisions as well.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    Apparently, Pete Carroll and John Schneider disagree with you. I have a friend who works with the Seahawks who heard them say it with his own ears.

    But I guess I’ll take your word instead. My bad, everyone. “Charles” has spoken.

  • charles

    That is only because as of now neither are up to Steeler standards.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    Actually, LeVeon Bell is getting 2.6 yards and a cloud of dust (against the first string).

    LeGarrett Blount is getting a little more yards but its primarily against second stringers.

  • B Nunez

    I agree 100%, we could get away with 2 down lineman when we had Harrison and Woodley playing defensive end. Both of those guys were strong enough to support the run. Now if I’m an opposing OC I would line up in a passing formation and run all day on this defense.

  • Ike Evans

    Idc wat the ypc are in the preseason not getting the same amount of carries as the would in the regular season…

  • Steve

    Please – Enough books wrote!

  • Steve

    Mitchell will be given a few chance to prove himself before Shark gobbles his spot.

  • Steve

    Rookie coaches like Kelly need to prove themselves and show their hands early. Well schooled coaches don’t show their hands until the money is on the line.

  • Lucus Rodriguez

    I don’t think this team is championship caliber. But I do know they have a championship caliber coach and FO though. Teams fall off after being good for so long its part of the business, drafting in the back half (middle in recent years) of the draft isn’t the best way to find talent.

  • Steve

    Indubidly!

  • Steve

    Ratirds also lost to a 2nd string QB in December.

  • blackandgoldBullion

    Peyton practices with his guys to the point that they know for example, run 5 steps cut at a certain angle and the ball’s there or some variation thereof with different patterns. If the Dbs bump the WRs the timing might be off by just enough to screw up the play. Read 1, read 2……. Too late. Here comes the pressure and you get a sack or at least a hit.

    So on 1st or 2nd down, these QBs simply throw it away most of the time, but on 3rd they will try to make a play and then it’s the defence that instead makes the big play.

    So I think it’s the DBS mostly but those Seahawks got away with mugging guys all the way down the field last year. Not gonna happen this year.

  • Michael Parker

    Its gonna be a long season with Ike starting. No way he can survive with the rule change. I would start Gay and Allen, bring MCCain in for nickel, and keep Taylor on the bench.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    Like when we play the Patriots in the playoffs and LeBeau does the same thing he always does and we lose?

  • blackandgoldBullion

    It may come to that.

  • steelster

    Kelly proved himself last year the eagles went from last to first

  • steelster

    the last time gay was a starter on the outside it wasn’t pretty

  • http://www.reverbnation.com/JohnnyLoose Johnny Loose

    Alright guys, we knew there would be growing pains. The offense will be fine. They didn’t get Brown or Archer involved nor did they use much no huddle. The line has given Ben plenty of time to throw. I believe they will gel on that side of the ball and be a dangerous unit. On defense, this is where we are gonna have to bite the bullet. I was hoping the changes they made in the offseason would help nullify what we are missing. And that Jarvis Jones would round into shape in his 2nd year. The secondary is only going to look bad again this season if we can’t figure out how to pressure the QB. All we need to be able to do is get penetration from our front seven. Until that problem gets solved, the offense is going to play catch up every game. I wish there were some miracle that could be worked for our D line / OLB units. Until those guys can do their job, this defense will remain in the back half of the league. I don’t have any answers for our front seven, that area is my biggest/only real concern moving forward..

  • http://suspect5.bandcamp.com/ HardPunkKore

    “Grab onto a guy”

    Isn’t that a 10 yard penalty for holding?

  • Josh Knepshield

    Lack of pass rush? Jason Worilds was near dominant when he was in the game last night. Jarvis Jones was going against the BEST OT in the NFL last night, so that is unfair to say on his part. Last week, everyone was loving Tuitt and Heyward, now after a meaningless game, everyone is saying they are terrible and can’t get off blocks. Give them time to get everything worked out, that is what the preseason is for! All I’m saying is don’t tear out your hair.

  • AndyR34

    Your problem here Eric is that you are looking for absolutes…that is all you talk about. And the point of the OP’s use of “litmus test” is that it is an indicator not an absolute. The definition itself points out that the change occurs between 4.5 and 8.3…a fairly broad range, but neither high nor low…nor exact. The point of the article was not that there is a 1:1 correlation between performance in the first half of the third pre-season game and the rest of the season, but that it is an INDICATION of that team’s preparedness for the season.

  • AndyR34

    I would agree that last night’s performance is not necessarily indicative of what the team is capable of, but it may be indicative of how bad they CAN be. And I also disagree for replacing Clark, Sanders, and Hood with Mitchell, Wheaton, and Cam Thomas may have made the team worse…at least temporarily. Please tell me your take-away from last night that makes you optimistic that this team is an improvement over last year’s team?

  • Steve

    Steelers get into trouble in the prevent D.

  • treeher

    While not excusing Ike’s play, I’m now thinking that even Mel Blount would look bad with the lack of pressure from the front seven. If Ben had that much time to pass and go through his progressions, he’d get a 125 rating every game.

  • treeher

    I agree this was about the Ben-Wheaton connection. Unfortunately, it was a miserable failure. Wheat didn’t seem to know where he was on the field. With all that off-season work and training camp, you’d think there’d be a bit more there by now.

  • treeher

    I’ve never been a Tomlin fan and the team’s decline just keeps reinforcing my opinion.

  • westcoasteeler

    We absolutely got pummeled last night.

  • Brendon Glad

    I couldn’t have said it any better about mike mitchell. I say that I don’t worry as much about wins and losses in the PS…just individuals showing they can play…but a beat-down like that makes me re-think that…not to mention that there are plenty of individuals to worry about.

  • Brendon Glad

    Cortez Allen is costing himself millions. He should run into the office and say “where do I sign”…before he puts any more bad film out there.

  • Isaias Reyes

    I think the Steelers were just tired from the long flight to Philly. Give em some slack dudes.

  • Isaias Reyes

    NO. NO OK.

  • Steelers12328882

    What?

  • walter mason

    I think the entire team was deflated by the actions of 2 selfish players.

  • Dan

    Anybody else feeling like the first 4-8 games might be pretty rough? We may get it together at some point this year, but we’re looking at a slow start. Seems like I’ve heard this story before.

  • WIINGY

    The fact that he kept putting Gay on Gronk is what baffles me.

  • WIINGY

    Ike “Swaggin” Taylor cannot cover period. Put him in press and here comes big plays.

  • WIINGY

    They need to blitz our of their sub package. He’s been playing bend but don’t break Cover 3 for a few years now. And Troy has been the only one who can come up an tackle.

  • Eric MacLaurin

    If he wants to say he used the Chemistry version of the term that’s fine with me and I’m wrong for assuming the common usage of Litmus test in correcting the writer. Weaseling out of saying there is a connection between two things by saying the word really just means there might be an indication because in chemistry the word refers to an inexact PH test is just weak. The content of the article wasn’t that this might mean we have a problem as an indicator would say.

    I don’t agree with the use of a scientific term for an actual test to connect things that aren’t connected but I can’t tell someone else what they wanted to say.

    No one tried to say 1:1 correlation. One person said there was a correlation and one person said there wasn’t. The statement that the 1st half of the 3rd preseason game is the top litmus test/indicator for the teams preparedness for the upcoming season is wrong no matter which definition you choose

  • BFB

    Enough already. Go play with your litmus paper in a mud puddle.

  • BFB

    Not nearly as much as you oh great sage…Hard to type while genuflecting….

  • BFB

    Keep posting as you do. I too try to look for the bright side of any situation and the silver lining of a black cloud like we saw Thu nite.

  • BFB

    Then why the rant and all caps in “EVERY SINGLE THREAD’ ?
    Respect your fellow fans and don’t personally attack with the statement “I don’t mean to attack you personally”. Comes across as a bit hollow.

  • Hard Row

    Archer better make a ton of plays because there were good CBs still on the board when they decided that a part time player was more important than CBs who can actually cover people.

  • BFB

    Here is what I saw that I feel will be significant going forward.
    D-Line – Cam Thomas looked silly. He got put on his rear repeatedly in one on one contests.
    Hayward looked solid but has not been above the line consistently. Needs to take another step to be counted among the elite pass rushers & D-Linemen of the league.
    McC;lendon has not benefitted from the extra weight. He still does not command double teams. He should move to end but Thomas and Fangupo are worse than him at Nose.
    Fangupo, Fangonno. Nuff said.
    McCullers is the biggest (pun intended) surprise here. Just think if we would have kept Alameda. Two guys over 345 lbs rotating at Nose. Never would have had to bring in Cam Thomas and the team would have saved money on the turf they have to replace from him wallowing around on his fat back!
    The rest of the roster (reserve judgment on Kiesel for now) are back ups and good for rotation.
    Secondary – Coming in way too “handy”. (Just full of puns, besides what my wife says I am full of…).
    I saw what would have been called tight or good coverage (by both teams) get called illegal contact all night long. Goodell needs to call off the hounds. Ruining the game for everyone.
    Linebackers – Jarvis needs to pick it up.
    Worilds had a solid game.
    Shazier needs consistency. That will come with experience.
    Timmons gets a solid but nothing spectacular.
    The rest, fighting for roster spots and no one has jumped out at me consistently. Glad to see Spence progress.
    O-Line – Adams took a step back moving to RT. Needs to be consistent if he wants to ever break the starting lineup again.
    Beachum – Mediocre at best. Pressure on his side on pass plays was way heavier than against the Bills. Either Adams did a better job or the Eagles pass rushers are better. He did not look great but he was up[ and down last year week to week.
    Foster – Kind of a down performance for him. Gilbert, Pouncy, DeCastro were solid, nothing more.
    The rest – Whimper should go. Wallace needs to shape up. seems to be regressing with penalties and technique issues. Fight for roster spots you young guys!
    Backs – Ben was 50 – 50. Grad needs to remember there is a left side when passing. (Maybe the called plays were all to the right. Seems he only looks right then throws as if he fears pressure that is not really there…)
    Landry Jones, no more groans. Cut him. Pick up a serviceable vet for 3rd string.
    Bell/Blount – Flashes but holes were not consistent. To many broken and bounce back plays. Still a great tandem going into the regular season.
    Archer – Dangerous change up with a ton of potential.
    WR’s – Brown looked good. Wheaton stepped up later in the game. DHB looked like our second best. Bryant needs to tighten up routes and get comfortable.
    Moye, J Brown nothing new to report. Hope they both get more chances in the last PS game. Lance Moore is no Cotchery and IMO should be released. Kashif likewise.
    ST’s – Suisham digressing. Head issues with the longer PAT? Get it together Shawn! Wing – Get more consistent! You have a name that could become a catch phrase in Pittsburgh. Don’t blow it man! Cut all “long snappers” and pack the roster up with value players. (Just had to yell from my bandwagon, nothing poor about long snap performance.) I refuse to even capitalize this position when spelling it!
    Kick coverage is inconsistent. Practice, practice, practice is all I can think of.

  • BFB

    Remiss in not mentioning Tuitt by name. He was among the guys that look like backups right now but I have a ton of faith in him becoming something special.

  • Eric MacLaurin

    Why?

    Because you like to read this comment section over and over and want it to be the same every time you look?

    Do you expect continued active conversation on old boards?

    Manage yourself. We’re just talking.

  • BFB

    9 or more IMO. Don’t get too down by the performance Thu.

  • BFB

    Well said. I would like Tomlin to take hard look at the Eagle’s play temp and steal that from their book. I don’t care where it started if it works. Our no huddle is effective and the fast pace no huddle of Philadelphia works as a routine way of running the Offense.

  • steeltown

    Well to your point, yes at the moment it doesn’t appear that we improved with those players, but im confident when its all said and done Wheaton and C.Thomas/Tuitt will be upgrades, as for Mitchell the jury is still out on him but we have to have some patience because he’s still new to the system and he missed some camp on the PUP
    In the end, there’s not much to take away from that performance. I can say last week they looked like an improved Team, Thurs night no so much… I guess we’ll find out soon enough

  • BFB

    That is a little defeatist there. We have talent. One bad pre-season game does not a season make. Hang in there.
    You could have said the same after the game in England or the Bears game last season but they turned it around. If not for Officials being total dumbazzes the final week we would have been in the playoffs. The team is better this year from a talent perspective.

  • BFB

    Get in off the ledge. You guys sound like spoiled children. We are never going to see dominance like we had in the 70′s with the league structure and rules. Compare Tomlin’s staff with Cowher’s and the record. We had ugly years under him and Noll both. I am satisfied with a competitive team that can make the playoffs. The sky is the limit at that point. Pittsburgh proved it in 05!

  • BFB

    No they don’t. They had a bad game.

  • BFB

    Two SB appearances, multiple playoff berths, SB trophy. Yeah, I bet Tomlin spends hours in the fetal position questioning his own talent.
    Sean and Mark are what is wrong with Steeler football fans. Panicky knee jerkers who will be on here extolling the teams virtues after a couple of regular season wins. You both sound silly.

  • BFB

    You are right on Lucas.

  • Jake Milman

    What if the Eagles simply just game planned, and we played vanilla?

  • Lucus Rodriguez

    Shamarko Thomas. Have him play the nickel CB. He is one of the best tacklers on the team he needs to be on the field more often. The cardinals did this last season with Tyrann Mathieu on obvious passing downs they would bring in an extra safety and Tyrann would play nickel. Long story short they had the best run defense in the league. When you have someone with the speed that he has and can tackle there is no reason he shouldn’t be playing more often.

  • Lucus Rodriguez

    I hope that by Mid Season 74 is the starting nose tackle with Tuitt/Kesiel/McClendon rotating at the RE spot.

  • Matt Manzo

    Competitive is all we want. And if we don’t improve we won’t be. All I’m saying is our back ups don’t have that pop that we’ve always had, not just the 70s.

  • BFB

    Agreed. Mean is something we are missing other than a few players. Playing together as a unit and gaining confidence will help with that. We need to conjure the spirit of Greg Lloyd! ( I know he is not dead.:))

  • Matt Manzo

    Lloyd is my favorite! I’d give anything for half of him!

  • Billwatkins

    Jarvis JOnes scared me before they picked him and I knew they would. They broadcasted it. Think he woulda went 3 or 4th round. 19 reps. 4.9+ 40. Yes by all means bring back Harrison for one year to at least rotate on Passing downs.

  • joed32

    Adams played mostly on the left side vs Eagles, you must have been watching Whimper. McClendon only had 16 snaps and Thomas only 21. It was the nickel defense playing without them that got gouged. Lots of good stuff though. Nice post.

  • BFB

    Thanks. Good points. They were rotating the tackle spots with Whimper & Adams. I just thought Adams looked like he took a step back when he did line up at RT on of run plays.
    McClendon and Thomas had the snaps you count but I did see Thomas on the ground way too often in one on one situations. He Is a beast of a man so I have to think technique or athleticism are the issues. I had high hopes that the Steelers pulled one from the discard pile (ala Jerome Bettis) but Thomas looks like a journeyman at best based on performance.
    I love Big Mac but think his talents are underutilized playing the Nose. They will keep him there though due to the depth consisting of Thomas and a rookie. I really think Fangupo will be gone.
    Go Steelers!

  • joed32

    Oh I agree that Thomas is a journeyman, I just don’t think it’s a bad thing. He’s cheap and can back up both positions. You need journeymen to fill out the team. We have 2 young and potentially good DEs and I’d love to see McCullers become a good NT, I hope he can learn fast.

  • joed32

    There are better punters who will be cut this weekend when teams get down to 53. Hope they grab one of them.

  • BFB

    Agreed. I think McCullers may have been underrated out of college but In our 3/4 he can become a force. I keep thinking that if we had kept Tamu around Nose would be set and we never would have needed Thomas which was actually predicated by Ziggy’s departure. I think the youg guys there may be a better long term bet than Thomas but for now he does have experience. I just hope he can pick up his game & technique. That is essential to get big plays out of the LB’s. I think next year if not late this season you’ll see a front 3 of Hayward/McCullers/Tuitt.

  • Slab

    Here’s the most accurate thing in your post’ “I have no clue”. Sorry to resort to namecalling, but you really are all complaint, no solution. I wasted a few precious moments reading some of your other posts and it seems apparent you aren’t really a fan of the Steelers. You are a fan of bashing the Steelers. Name the player the Steelers should have signed that they didn’t. Name the player the Steeler’s should have drafted they didn’t. Name 5 better GMS, name 5 better Coaches. If you can’t, you are really saying the Steelers are top 5 in your mind and that isn’t good enough. Without a list of who you like better, it’s obvious you compare the Steelers to some imaginary perfect standard where every draft pick and FA signing pans out, where every season ends in the Superbowl. Doesn’t exist. Steelers are one of the best organizations year in and year out. If you agree, stop complaining. If you disagree, list the better ones so we can throw their issues in front of you.

  • Slab

    Who are the guys on the Seahawks that are top 3 at their positions? Who were the guys on the Superbowl teams of the Steelers in 2008 and 2010? This isn’t the NBA with 5 starters, this is the NFL where a team that gets hot at the right time can win the Superbowl after a barely above .500 season. Up until the last 2 injury plagued seasons, the Steelers had gone 12-4 in 3 out of 4 seasons with 2 Superbowl appearances. It’s not just loyalty, it’s not being a reactionary bandwagon fan. The Steelers finished 6-2 last year. Their 0-4 start was without their top Olineman, top RB, top TE and starting ILB. The prior year went in the tank when Ben went down after a 6-2 start. I’m pretty sure most teams would have struggled under those scenarios. Take Manning away from the Broncos, do you see them as Superbowl favorites (did you see what happened to the Colts when Manning went down?) Take 3 starters off the Seattle D and one off the Offense in game one and let’s see how that changes their season.

  • Slab

    Dumbest thing ever?

    Yeah, 7 years of winning at a .633 percent clip, zero losing records, 4 playoff appearances, 2 Superbowl appearances and a world championship needs to be ignored. Back to back 8-8 seasons, the Steelers should fire him immediately and hire who exactly? Please name the coach you would rather have. Better yet, name 5. Because if you don’t/can’t you are in essence wanting the Steelers to fire someone you acknowledge to be top 5 and that is insane.

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