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Reflection on Ben Roethlisberger


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I thought Phil Simms was right on the money in criticizing the play call on the fade pattern to Plaxico on second down at the 4, maybe 5 minutes into the fourth quarter. I think the Steelers should have been approaching that play as if it were 4-down territory, and I liked either of the alternatives that Simms offered up (a running play or some sort of QB rollout play). I thought that when they ended up settling for 3 there, the game was all but over. Let's face it, they were in a bad spot no matter how that drive ended up, but that second down call was a backbreaker IMO.

 

I also agree with a previous poster that Pittsburgh's gameplan was a little too conservative. What little success Rothlisberger had, especially early on, was when he threw the ball on first down. I would like to have seen more of that to loosen up the Patriots defense a little, then go back to your smashmouth rushing attack.

 

Of course, hindsight is always 20/20...

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I don't know why people are having a hard time comprehending my point here. Ben played a terrible game.... he stunk it up.... two of his picks were terrible throws and the other was a missread of the defense.... he largely contributed to the Steelers defeat.

 

However, the Pats offensive TD drives were 60 yards (1 play), 70 yards, 69 yards, and 55 yards.... Ben's picks certainly hurt the Steelers chances, but the defense Athena the bed at least as bad a Ben did... and I think worse because they were the #1 defense in the NFL, while Ben is still a rookie as everyone likes to point out... the Defense needed to play better in order to help cover for the rook's mistakes.

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And I don't get all the talk about the Steelers game plan being too conservative. They tried to open it up on early downs last week against the Jets and almost blew the game. Had they opened it up on early downs against the Pats and failed, people would be critisizing them for going away from their strengths (as was the critisism in the first half against the Jets). No matter what they did, they were going to be critisized if it didn't work.

 

I'm not going to 2nd guess the game plan... the Pats executed their gameplan better and stopped the Steelers running game.... hat's off to them.

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And I don't get all the talk about the Steelers game plan being too conservative.  They tried to open it up on early downs last week against the Jets and almost blew the game.  Had they opened it up on early downs against the Pats and failed, people would be critisizing them for going away from their strengths (as was the critisism in the first half against the Jets).  No matter what they did, they were going to be critisized if it didn't work.

 

I'm not going to 2nd guess the game plan... the Pats executed their gameplan better and stopped the Steelers running game.... hat's off to them.

 

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Agree about the play calling for the most part. I still think the 2nd down fade to Plax was a bad call - should have run the ball 4 times.

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Agree about the play calling for the most part.  I still think the 2nd down fade to Plax was a bad call - should have run the ball 4 times.

 

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I don't see how that was a bad call, Plaxico had the ball in his hands, had the defender turned around, and simply dropped it.

The point is it is 1st and goal, Bettis runs twice for 2 or 3 yards and Plaxico doesn't come up with the catch. Not much you can fault Ben for on that stalled drive.

 

The bad decision is if you are not going to go for it on 4th down, they should have passed on 3rd down.

Edited by Patsfan04
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Agree about the play calling for the most part.  I still think the 2nd down fade to Plax was a bad call - should have run the ball 4 times.

 

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I don't see how that was a bad call, Plaxico had the ball in his hands, had the defender turned around, and simply dropped it.

 

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It's a bad call because Burress SUCKS in those opportunities.... you said it yourself, he dropped the freakin' ball!!!!! He made that catch ONE time all year and it happened to be against the Pats in the first meeting. He is absolutely TERRIBLE at jump ball situations which defies logic since he is so big, but it's true... running the ball 4 times would have been better.

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It's a bad call because Burress SUCKS in those opportunities.... you said it yourself, he dropped the freakin' ball!!!!!  He made that catch ONE time all year and it happened to be against the Pats in the first meeting.  He is absolutely TERRIBLE at jump ball situations which defies logic since he is so big, but it's true... running the ball 4 times would have been better.

 

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Exactly.

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Good and bad QBs alike tend to throw a lot of INTs when playing the Pats in the playoffs...

 

Yesterday - Ben (3 INTs)

'03 AFC Championship - Manning (4 INTs)

SB 36 - Warner (2 INTs)

'01 AFC Championship - Kordell (3 INTs)

 

Ben's performance yesterday is by no means a death sentence. In fact, I think that he's going to have a great NFL career.

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I think Ben tried to take too much responsibility all week leading up to the game. As a rookie he should be asked to go out and just do the best he can.

 

The Steelers shouldn't hang their heads, the kid will pay big dividends in the future.

 

As for Plex, anybody else notice that he doesn't "jump" in those short yardage fades? He was leaning back into the defender instead of aggressively up for the ball. Moose Muhammad and Randy are the two best at this, and Plex has two inches on both of em'.

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As for Plex, anybody else notice that he doesn't "jump" in those short yardage fades?

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He doesn't jump for the ball EVER.... the guy is so freakin' frustrating to watch... he gives away his height advantage by not trying to catch the ball at it's peak.... stupid Burress.

 

Burress is probably gone... I'd love for them to sign Muhammad (I think it would actually be an upgrade), although he would probably command too much money as well.

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Anyone else notice Ben's comments in the pregame interview with Sharpe?

Something along the lines of:

Sharpe: "You admitted that you felt some pressure before the Jets game." "Do you feel pressure this week?"

Ben: "Yes, I feel a little more pressure this week."

 

You can admit you felt some pressure after the game, either in victory or defeat.

After Ben's comments, I was like "this game is over".

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Anyone else notice Ben's comments in the pregame interview with Sharpe?

Something along the lines of:

Sharpe:  "You admitted that you felt some pressure before the Jets game."  "Do you feel pressure this week?"

Ben:  "Yes, I feel a little more pressure this week."

 

You can admit you felt some pressure after the game, either in victory or defeat.

After Ben's comments, I was like "this game is over".

 

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That's complete BS. If anyone starting in a conference championship wasn't feeling pressure, there'd be something wrong with him. It is how one deals with that pressure that matters. Ben has some learning to do.

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IIRC, didn't one of the turnovers start in Patriots territory, but when it was finished, it ended up in the Steelers end zone for 6? :D

 

The first pick was behind the WR and he deflected it, but it was still a terrible pass.

 

The second pick, he was baited.

 

The third pick was another terrible throw--overthrow.

 

First INT was their first drive, and led to a field goal. Second INT was returned for a TD, and the third INT led to another touchdown.

 

Let's call it like it is: Ben played terrible and a lot of the blame should fall squarely on his shoulders. The rest of the blame needs to be put on a much too conservative gameplan. Sure, their MO is to run the ball, but mixing it up a little in the beginning of the game (on 1st and 2nd downs) may have changed things a bit.

 

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You hit it square on the head. Roth struggled, no doubt about it. But the game plan was even worse. They should have come out and suprised the Pats by mixing it up a little at the beginning instead of just pounding the ball. As the game went on, it looked like the Steelers O-line got worn down. It was supposed to be the other way around.

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Who are you, Esiason?  :D  That was priceless -- I bet Marino is still wandering around with that "what do you mean I have no clothes on -- I'm the emporer" look on his face!!!

 

Anyway, I like Ben's performance this season.  Heck of a year from any QB, especially a rookie who came out early from a smaller school ...  I don't think the last two games are indicative of his next 100.  I think he'll learn and develop into one of the finest QBs in the game.

 

Here's hoping, anyway!

 

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I like jelly doughnuts.

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I thought Phil Simms was right on the money in criticizing the play call on the fade pattern to Plaxico on second down at the 4, maybe 5 minutes into the fourth quarter.  I think the Steelers should have been approaching that play as if it were 4-down territory, and I liked either of the alternatives that Simms offered up (a running play or some sort of QB rollout play).  I thought that when they ended up settling for 3 there, the game was all but over.  Let's face it, they were in a bad spot no matter how that drive ended up, but that second down call was a backbreaker IMO.

 

I also agree with a previous poster that Pittsburgh's gameplan was a little too conservative.  What little success Rothlisberger had, especially early on, was when he threw the ball on first down.  I would like to have seen more of that to loosen up the Patriots defense a little, then go back to your smashmouth rushing attack.

 

Of course, hindsight is always 20/20...

 

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I like bears.

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They should have come out and suprised the Pats by mixing it up a little at the beginning instead of just pounding the ball. 

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That's exactly what they tried against the Jets.  You saw the results.

 

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I agree. Nothing wrong with the game plan at all. The Pats executed better than the Steelers did.... hats off to the Pats for being able to stop the Steelers running game.

 

And the people complaining about the game plan would have been complaining had the Steelers come out passing early. I can just here it now... Ben struggled against the Jets and the Steelers are a running team! Why on earth would they abandon the running game and try to have Ben beat the Pats?!? Can't have it both ways :D

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Agree about the play calling for the most part.  I still think the 2nd down fade to Plax was a bad call - should have run the ball 4 times.

 

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Very true. That fade pass was reminiscent of the one Plummer threw to Smith in the end zone against the Chargers about five weeks ago. Result: PICK. I hate that call.

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