Steelers Vs Ravens Missed Tackles Report

One week after the Pittsburgh Steelers turned in an embarrassing tackling performance against the Chicago Bears in a 23-17 overtime loss, the Steelers’ defense continued its Jekyll and Hyde performance, coming through with a standout performance against the Baltimore Ravens in Maryland in Week 4.

Although it was a terrific performance from a young, improving defense, the missed tackle number was a bit higher than anticipated.

Let’s take a look.

Total missed tackles at Ravens — 12

Ryan Shazier – 4
JJ Wilcox – 2
Joe Haden – 2
Cam Heyward – 1
Sean Davis – 1
LT Walton – 1
Vince Williams – 1 (special teams)

Total missed tackles through three weeks — 57 (average of 14.25 MT per game)

Ryan Shazier – 10
Vince Williams – 6 (one on special teams)
Anthony Chickillo – 4
JJ Wilcox – 4
Sean Davis – 4
Bud Dupree – 3
TJ Watt – 3
Cameron Heyward – 3
Joe Haden – 3
William Gay – 2
Tyson Alualu – 2
Mike Mitchell – 2
Mike Hilton – 2
Javon Hargrave – 2
Tyson Alualu – 2
Stephon Tuitt – 1
Tyler Matakevich – 1
LT Walton – 1
LJ Fort – 1 (Special Teams)
Arthur Moats – 1 (Special Teams)

Ryan Shazier turned in one of the best individual performances Sunday I’ve seen from him in the four years he’s been a Steeler, so the missed tackles number from Sunday’s game against the Ravens comes with a bit of an asterisk.

Two of those missed tackles came on Baltimore’s final two drives, in which the game was more than decided. Despite raking up 11 tackles (10 solo) and an interception on the day, Shazier did lead the Steelers in missed tackles with four, but overall there’s not a much at all to be disappointed in from the fourth-year linebacker out of Ohio State.

Along with Shazier, JJ Wilcox had a really good game, but he did miss two tackles on Alex Collins’ long runs against the Steelers, which is becoming a slight concern from him in space against ball carriers, dating back to Week 3 when Tarik Cohen gave him fits on long runs.

Joe Haden has been a good cover corner for the Steelers, but he’s struggled the last two weeks in the tackling department, but it’s nothing glaring.

Overall, it was a good week in the tackling department for the Steelers as Pittsburgh had just eight missed tackles late into the fourth quarter before the Ravens got desperate in a blowout win.

On the first play of the game, it looked like the run defense was still going to be a problem for the Steelers as the Ravens’ wide zone opened up a gaping hole for Alex Collins to run through.

On film, it looks as though Shazier wasn’t really gap responsible, and Sean Davis didn’t fill that gap well enough, either, allowing Collins to race into the secondary untouched.

From there, Wilcox — starting in place of the injured Mike Mitchell — takes a poor angle to Collins near the sideline and is left grasping for his shoulders as the lumbering back runs past.

Angles are a problem at times for this defense, but fortunately this wasn’t a common occurrence on Sunday.

Collins busted loose on the Steelers defense for a second time midway through the third quarter, running a wide zone to the right this time. This was a perfectly blocked play by Baltimore, as you can see the offensive linemen work to the second level, creating a traffic jam at linebacker, allowing Collins to get into the secondary.

While you’d like to see Haden be much more physical taking on the lead blocker, Wilcox has to do a better job of breaking down in space for the tackle. He’s caught flat-footed in space, allowing Collins to run past him, again forcing Wilcox to grasp for air.

Fortunately, TJ Watt showed great hustle on the play to force Collins to cut back into the middle of the field, as Alex Kozora noted in a piece earlier this week, while Haden never quit on the play, running down the Baltimore back.

Late in the third quarter, the Ravens continued to try establishing a consistent run game with Collins, but the Steelers continued to be up to the task. Shazier knifes in to meet Collins in the backfield, but he forgets to bring his base with him, bouncing off of Collins in the hole.

Fortunately for Shazier, there’s a host of Steelers defenders around Collins, as LT Walton also misses a tackle before Tyson Alualu is able to wrestle Collins to the ground.

For the most part, the missed tackles by the Steelers weren’t egregious on Sunday, thanks to gang tackling by the defensive group. They need to continue to do that throughout the season. If they do, and the offense gets going, we could really see the Steelers take off.

  • Chad H

    Isn’t the OLBs job to seal the edges. Need to do a better job of getting off blocks and sealing the edge.

  • falconsaftey43

    Yes and no. They have a gap to defend like everyone else. Their job is to force the run back inside.

    First GIF Watt forces the run back inside. Appears to me Davis fills his gap correctly, but Shazier tried to duck under the block and was one gap too far inside. Gap Shazier ended up in should have been Williams (but Williams got reached again).

    2nd one, it looks like Dupree penetrated too far, he needs to stay more disciplined there and not get more than 1-2 yards deep. Bigger problem was Davis/Williams both get cut by one guy and sealed inside.

    So there you have one big outside run was on the ILBs, the other was a combo of OLB and ILB/S.

  • Ike Evans

    Is shazier ever not going to be at the top of these lists? Or is this the bad we have to take with the good he provides this defense?

  • falconsaftey43

    yeah, pretty much. He’s light and doesn’t always wrap up so it can get ugly. But he makes enough big plays to make up for it. Sometimes, he’s not even going to be in a position to miss a tackle if he’s not playing fast and somewhat out of control.

  • LHW

    Josh – thanks for doing the digging. It would be great to see a missed tackles report for the other team. That would help put things in perspective and provide relevance – how the Steelers did vs. the other team and how they stack up. Did they miss more? Did they miss less?

    Should you find yourself bored, and needing some more digging to do, that would be great!

  • falconsaftey43

    That is a fantastic idea. I think sometimes we get too focused in on what the Steelers did right/wrong and forget that the other teams make mistakes too. Put some context to 12 missed tackles, is that good? ok? terrilbe? Would be really interesting to see.

  • Steel Realist PAul

    Hey Josh, curious to know where you get the stats for this?

  • CP72

    He could just stay blocked and not have an opportunity to make the tackle…..Ike you’ve never been a big Shazier fan, but you got to admit he’s developing into a pretty darn good player.

  • The Sun is Pro-Black

    I can deal with some of his missed tackles as they disrupt plays and allow others to finish them off. A lot of players wouldn’t even be in the position to miss some of the tackles he does.

  • Ike Evans

    Yea I just thought he was oft injured and inconsistent but he’s the most consistent playmaker on this team and that’s a fact but if he didn’t miss so many tackles he’d be the best linebacker in the league no argument

  • Dshoff

    I was yelling at Wilcox, GRAB HIS HAIR!!! The runner would have easily went down if he grabbed his hair. If the hair is out, its fair game.

  • Josh Carney

    Just from rewatching the game and tracking them myself. Why, what’s up?

  • Joe

    Spot on!

  • Joe

    I am a big fan of Shazier. Heard him say that he wants the kind of recognition and success AB has created for himself. Leading the team in missed tackles isn’t going to get him there. Always thought he could put on an additional 8 pounds of muscle and get stronger without giving up any speed and quickness. His recognition skills are strong so he doesn’t need to run like a bat out of hell. Stay under control and make the tackle.

  • The Sun is Pro-Black

    Yea, but his missed tackles have little to do with strength. It’s him being out of control. He doesn’t appear to have good balance when he’s running and running and fast as he does, doesn’t help. I think that’ll be the difference between him being a really good player and a great player.

  • Delboka

    Shaizer’s in the middle wasn’t that bad. It still slowed the runner down and closed the gap.

  • Reader783

    Couldn’t agree with this more. Most of the tackles Shazier misses are after he flies through the hole to disrupt a play most ILB in the NFL wouldn’t even dream to disrupt. If he starts making those tackles, he becomes one of the best defenders in the NFL without question. Even the missed tackle in the GIF above was understandable; he fills a hole then jukes to avoid a blocker, making him off balance and in a tough position to stop a RB with 10 yards of momentum, but he stops that momentum making the tackle easier for this teammates. That’s not a horrible missed tackle.

  • Steel Realist PAul

    Oh couple things, Josh. First,
    I just was wondering if there was some official site you were using because I’d be interesting in knowing that, but with it being you, no worries.

    Also because, I never know as I watch games and take a loose track of things, like missed tackles,
    but it always seems like I saw some that don’t show up here. And who knows, likely plays with penalties or maybe just wasn’t called a miss.

    Thx for the report and keep it up!