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Sunday, January 15, 2006

Steeling a Bus with No Breaks!

In a game where everything went Indy's way, the Steelers still pulled off a victory. A few of my thoughts about the game:

10. Marvin Harrison. I want to hate him, but I just can't. Remember when Jerry Rice was considered a class act and then he got all selfish and egotistical at the end of his career? I don't see that happening with Harrison. He just makes plays, and acts like that's what they pay him to do.
9. Mike Doss. I loved him at OSU. I thought he was a great draft pick for the Colts. But I really loved seeing him repeatedly torched tonight.
8. Tony Dungy. I know he's been bold about his faith, and this has been a traumatic and difficult year for him, but his questionable coaching history continued tonight. On the last drive, he took a couple of stabs at the end zone when they just needed first downs (playing at home, you play for the tie and OT) and on 3rd and 2 he runs a pass play. I'm sure those decisions will haunt him.
7. Troy Polamalu. A friend of mine explained to me that blitzing Peyton Manning is a major mistake. "That's exactly what the Colts want you to do!" He exclaimed. Ordinarily I'd agree and assume Pittsburgh's corners would get torched. But Polamalu makes that difficult to read. He can be on the line and still in coverage. He can be ten yards off from scrimmage and still be blitzing. He clearly made Peyton's day difficult.
6. Bill Cowher. He may have done his best job coaching in a playoff game ever. I stand behind his decision to go for the end zone at the end of the game. With a high powered offense like the Colts, playing in their stadium, you don't play for a six point lead. He did a great job.
5. Mike Vanderjagt. Manning called him an "idiot kicker" who "got liquored up" after Vanderjagt blamed a playoff loss on Peyton. Let's see how Indy responds to his miss. Greatest field goal percentage of all time, and he completely missed the thing. Not even close.
4. Dick LeBeau. After watching his defensive schemes all season, I'm convinced the man deserves another shot at head coaching. I'd hate to lose him as a coordinator, but he deserves more. "He already tried head coaching once," you may say, "and it was a failure." Sure, but that was a clown organization. The man needs a real shot with a real team.
3. Ben Roethlisberger. How does a young guy have so much poise? The second Bettis fumbled, Big Ben was already thinking about how to get to the Colts defender. He is a player capable of carrying a team. I love not having to cringe when I see that the offense is running a pass instead of a rushing play.
2. Jerome Bettis. Any fan of hard work has to be glad that was not Bettis' last professional carry. The man has migraines, diabetes and asthma. He plays hard and gives his all. Big Ben may carry the team with talent, but Bettis and Hines Ward are the real heart of the offense.
1. Terrible Officiating. Home field advantage should be about your loud fans. You should enjoy playing on turf instead of grass if you want. You should even be allowed to pipe in crowd noise to make your stadium louder if you want. But you should not get calls from the officials too. (Please understand, I'm not saying the Colts did anything to sway the officials). I can understand that officials may get intimidated by a home crowd, but this was ridiculous. The pass interference call against Randle-El was absurd. He was tackled before the ball got there. Polamalu's interception seemed pretty cut and dry. He dove, controlled the ball and hit his knee on it on his way back up to run. There certainly was not enough to overturn it by replay. And lastly, how does either offsides or false start not get called on the drive where Pittsburgh punted? I actually would have preferred they call false start than a no call. No call just isn't even logical.

Off to Denver, where I feel that if we can confuse Peyton Manning, Jake Plummer should be in trouble.

Could the Bus get a chance to retire in his hometown? You couldn't write it any better.


  • At 8:06 AM, Anonymous Natty said…

    no matter how much i hate to say it, the steelers deserved to win that game. the officiating was TERRIBLE. i don't think i have seen anything like that before. weren't these guys supposed to be the best? also, the pressure on peyton manning was so good. the steelers much have watched the chargers/colts game about 1000 times. it was pretty much the same game to me.
    man, tony dungy can blow the playoffs can't he. now, i feel bad for him because of his son, but has he even won a playoff game with the colts. they were almost undefeated this year. The colts should have won the super bowl, but, as usual, they blew it.

  • At 2:08 PM, Blogger danny2 said…

    it was bad.

    i remember phil luckett blowing the call over thanksgiving in '97 (coin toss to start overtime) and thinking, "we never should have let detroit back into the game." but i couldn't say that cost us the game because we'd played so badly.

    this week, it felt like we were playing well, and EVERY call was going against us...so the victory was all the sweeter!

  • At 8:43 PM, Blogger Gary Underwood said…

    Steelers deserved to win yesterday. Refs were bad.

    Unfortunately, the Steelers couldn't beat the Browns in '05.

  • At 6:04 PM, Anonymous matt said…

    the colts are my team but the steelers definitely deserved to win that game with the way the colts played the first half. the refs were horrible in all of the playoff games this past weekend. there were so many bad calls. i do not understand passing the ball on 3 and 2 either especially when they have a great running attack with edge and plenty of time and 2 time outs. however i think that peyton might have made that call because i know he makes a lot of the play calling on the field, heck he even overides the coach like he did on the one fourth down situation. it doesnt matter who called it, it was just a bad call. then i couldnt believe vanderjagt missed the field goal that bad, he is supposed to be mr. automatic. indy just did not play up to their potential in that game.


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