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 Joe Starkey: This collapse shaping up as Steelers’ worst under Mike Tomlin

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LambertWardSteel



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PostSubject: Joe Starkey: This collapse shaping up as Steelers’ worst under Mike Tomlin    Joe Starkey: This collapse shaping up as Steelers’ worst under Mike Tomlin  EmptyMon Dec 24, 2018 2:10 am

This article says it all very well.



NEW ORLEANS — The only thing that can save them now is the Cleveland Browns.

A Steelers team that once stood 7-2-1 with a 2 1/2-game lead in the AFC North — and a 3 1/2-game lead on the team now in line to win it — needs an assist from the freakin’ Browns in order to salvage their season.

Well, that or a tie between the Indianapolis Colts and Tennessee Titans — which seems about as likely as a Steelers-Saints rematch Super Bowl LIII.

So unless Baker Mayfield can rescue them the way Rex Ryan did a few years back (a week after The Ryan Mallett Fiasco), this will go down as the worst collapse of the Mike Tomlin era.

The others in the discussion are the “Unleash Hell” year of 2009, when the Steelers lost five in a row — mostly to horrifying teams like the Browns — to drop to 6-7. They wound up 8-8.

The other was “The Andy Dalton Disaster” of 2012, when a 6-3 team lost five of six, including the de facto division title game, at home, to Dalton and the Cincinnati Bengals.

This would be worse, for two reasons:

— These Steelers will have blown a bigger division lead. Their biggest lead was 2 1/2 games over the Bengals, and they led the Baltimore Ravens by 3 1/2 games with only seven games left. And now the Ravens are in control.

— This Steelers team is much better than the 2009 or 2012 teams — and they proved it Sunday despite a 31-28 loss in the ear-splitting Superdome. The fact they stood toe-to-toe with the best team in the NFL, on this field, makes it all the more inexcusable that they are where they are.

It’s ridiculous.

Aside from handing the ball to Stevan Ridley on a critical play, I had very little problem with the way this game went down.

OK, giving the Saints a field goal with 40 seconds left in the first half (and no timeouts) was bad. And the end-zone interference call on Joe Haden was one of the worst calls I have ever seen. But these things happen.

As for the fake-punt call on 4th-and-5 with 4:11 left in regulation, the one that will light up talk-radio lines for decades to come? Zero issue here.

That was a gutsy call. The rationale made sense. Tomlin explained that even if they fell short, and New Orleans scored, they likely would have ample time left.

The smart money said Drew Brees was going to march the Saints down the field. It was a matter of how far he would have to go and how much time he was going to use. Yes, the Steelers put him in a bind a few times, and yes, there was another questionable interference call on Haden.

The bottom line is that Brees marched them down the field — and still left time for Ben Roethlisberger. Tomlin’s call was much like his decision to try an (unsuccessful) onside kick with a late lead against Green Bay in 2009. Aaron Rodgers got a short field in that one and scored, but Roethlisberger had time to win it on the final play.

In this one, Roethlisberger had his team driving for a possible tying field goal (not that Chris Boswell would have felt any pressure) or more, when JuJu Smith-Schuster fumbled. I can’t say I have much of a problem with Smith-Schuster, either, given the way he performed Sunday, playing through an injury, and the way he has performed all season.

You know what I do have a major problem with? Oakland. That’s what. Losing in Oakland. And tying in Cleveland.

And losing in Denver. And blowing a 23-7 lead at home to the Los Angeles Chargers.

But mostly Oakland.

How can a team that gave Brees a stiff challenge in a building where he averages 38 points a game surrender two long fourth-quarter touchdown drives to the Raiders?

How could an offense that lit up what had been the NFL’s best defense of late have looked so bad in Oakland?


Finally, how will Tomlin and GM Kevin Colbert live with themselves knowing they could have put Roethlisberger into that Oakland game earlier?

The Steelers left themselves zero margin for error going into maybe the toughest road venue in the league.

“We made the bed,” Tomlin said. “We’ll lay in it.”

The feeling in the locker room was one of stunned resignation, mixed with a smidgen of false hope. Or maybe real hope.

This once was a group of players headed for a No. 2 seed or better, and here they were, reduced to quotes like these …

“You never know what can happen,” guard Ramon Foster said.

“Cleveland’s playing pretty well,” said guard David DeCastro. “But I’m just worried about beating the Bengals. That’s all we can control now.”

“Hopefully,” said defensive end Cam Heyward, “we’ll play (the Saints) again in the Super Bowl.”

“It’s been a crazy one,” Roethlisberger said of the season. “I hope it’s not done yet.”

Hope. Hope. Hope. That’s all the Steelers have left.

What a bloody shame.

And they have only themselves to blame.


https://www.post-gazette.com/sports/joe-starkey/2018/12/23/Joe-Starkey-This-collapse-shaping-up-as-Steelers-worst-under-Mike-Tomlin/stories/201812230216

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solardave

solardave

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PostSubject: Re: Joe Starkey: This collapse shaping up as Steelers’ worst under Mike Tomlin    Joe Starkey: This collapse shaping up as Steelers’ worst under Mike Tomlin  EmptyMon Dec 24, 2018 4:37 am

Couldn't have said it any better. The game last night didn't end our season. It was all the other senseless losses to lesser teams and the tie with Cleveland. That game set the tone for another under achieving season. If the Browns beat the Ravens and we beat the Bengals to sneak in the back door I honestly don't know if we could win a playoff game. If that happens it's to bad we couldn't request to play the best of the bunch. We don't fair well against mediocre teams.Joe Starkey: This collapse shaping up as Steelers’ worst under Mike Tomlin  2913999526

For the record I was OK with the fake punt. If we weren't able to move the ball on them then maybe not. It was pretty obvious they were gonna score so get it over with and let Ben have more time to drive and score with little time for Brees.

BOTTOM line---we pissed away our chances of another SB. Better coaching replaced the earlier shit show but not soon enough to save any jobs IMO.
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LambertWardSteel



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PostSubject: Re: Joe Starkey: This collapse shaping up as Steelers’ worst under Mike Tomlin    Joe Starkey: This collapse shaping up as Steelers’ worst under Mike Tomlin  EmptyMon Dec 24, 2018 6:04 am

@solardave wrote:
Couldn't have said it any better. The game last night didn't end our season. It was all the other senseless losses to lesser teams and the tie with Cleveland. That game set the tone for another under achieving season. If the Browns beat the Ravens and we beat the Bengals to sneak in the back door I honestly don't know if we could win a playoff game. If that happens it's to bad we couldn't request to play the best of the bunch. We don't fair well against mediocre teams.Joe Starkey: This collapse shaping up as Steelers’ worst under Mike Tomlin  2913999526  

For the record I was OK with the fake punt. If we weren't able to move the ball on them then maybe not. It was pretty obvious they were gonna score so get it over with and let Ben have more time to drive and score with little time for Brees.

BOTTOM line---we pissed away our chances of another SB. Better coaching replaced the earlier shit show but not soon enough to save any jobs IMO.

Yeah, I'm feeling much the same...I'm not sure what good sneaking into the playoffs is going to do.

Had they taken care of business just twice in the Clev-Oak-SD-Den games the division would already have been in hand yesterday, and the Saints game would have been a confidence boost. If they could play them to 31-28 in NO they'd probably be able to beat them at a neutral field in the Super Bowl

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SteelerFreak58

SteelerFreak58

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PostSubject: Re: Joe Starkey: This collapse shaping up as Steelers’ worst under Mike Tomlin    Joe Starkey: This collapse shaping up as Steelers’ worst under Mike Tomlin  EmptyTue Dec 25, 2018 4:20 pm

Unleash Hell anyone??? The Standard is the Standard! Even if that standard is shitting the bed against sub .500 teams right? If you will...
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