Thursday, September 10, 2009

2009-2010 Steelers Predictions

The NFL season (finally) officially begins tonight when the defending Super Bowl Champion Pittsburgh Steelers face the Tennessee Titans. As a preview of the 2009-2010 season, I decided to ask some of my favorite Steeler fan bloggers their predictions for the season. Unfortunately, they did not reply. Instead, here are the predictions from other folks! (A little humor for you!)

Before we begin, here are your fine panels of experts:

* drinkyourmilkshake of Behind the Steel Curtain
* Phil of Phil's Occasional Musings
* Michael Rizzo of Rizzo Sports (and the Rizzo Sports Blog)
* Messiah of White Nerdy Wonks
* Donald of Steelers Today
* Marc of White Nerdy Wonks
* Steve of Steve Is Alive
* Gobo of White Nerdy Works
* Sean of Sean's Ramblings (That's me!)
* Rob of The Bluey Blog

1. Number of sacks James Harrison will have this season.

DYM - 16, also the number of babies he will eat this season.
Phil - 15, though a few of them might be questionable when the QB falls down and covers his head as Silverback speeds toward him.
Michael - 17, He'll battle with Timmons of the team lead.
Messiah - He and Woodley will flip-flop on who is able to get to the QB more often. Let's go with 12 sacks for Harrison.
Donald - If the refs continue to let offensive linemen hold Harrison on every play, he'll have 18 sacks. If they don't allow him to be held, he'll have 79 sacks.
Marc - 19.5
Steve - 12 for James. Woodley leads the team with 15.5 this year!
Gobo - 12.5
Sean - 14
Rob - 23, breaking Michael Strahan's record.

2. Limas Sweed's numbers (catches, yards & touchdowns).

DYM - 25 catches, 400 yards, 5 touchdowns.
Phil - 45, 750, 7
Michael - 52 / 10 - He'll be the favorite receiver near the End Zone
Messiah - Limas will have a year reminiscent of Nate Washington two years ago. 30 catches, 450 yards, 5 TDs.
Donald - As longs as it's more than last year, I'll be happy. Ummmmm, except drops. I want to see less of those.
Marc - 30, 350, 2
Steve - 34 grabs. 765 yards 4 TD's. I think that is fair?!?!
Gobo - 45 catches, 625 yards, 5 TD
Sean - 35 catches, 475 yards, 4 TDs. Solid numbers for a 4th receiver (I'm considering Heath as #3).
Rob - Do you mean butterfingers? No more than 10 catches, 1 TD and 150 yards. Yeah, I'm serious.

3. Stefan Logan: Reminds me of Antwaan Randle El as a Steeler; Greatest returner in team history; or Another Allen Rossum? (Sean's note: This was a poorly formed question as I was only referring to Logan as a returner)

DYM - Better than Randle-El, easily gets in the end-zone at least three times this season.
Phil - I hope he's another Antwaan Randle-El. We're going to need a guy like that to compete in the new "all-Wildcat, all the time" NFL of 2009.
Michael - He'll be good.
Messiah - Too early to tell. I'd say he's not quite Twaan, but certainly better than Colclough.
Donald - I predict that Logan will become the greatest 5'7" returner in team history.
Marc - El, yeah
Steve - I think he will be in the middle. Randle El was one of a kind and contributed more on offense than Logan will (or is expected to). However, I do expect MANY game changing plays from the pint sized CFL star.
Gobo - Better than Rossum, not quite Randle-El because he can’t QB. I’ll go with 2 return TDs this year, with another 6 called back for holding.
Sean - I love any professional athlete that is the same height as me! He'll be solid and will finish 3rd in the AFC in average punting return yards with 2 TDs.
Rob - He's the real deal and will finally make us forget Randle El.

4. Will Jeff Reed be arrested during the season?

DYM - Perhaps if Chris Hanson starts "To Catch a Predator" back up.
Phil - Only by drunken, curvaceous women in Strip District bars.
Michael - Arrested - NO, he plays for the Steelers, which means people will go out of their way not to arrest him. He has a much better chance of being a honorary Allegheny County Sheriff, or being named ambassador to Luxembourg.
Messiah - Depends on how well the ball boys keep the towel dispenser stocked in the clubhouse
Donald - No. However, he will get several under-aged girls pregnant and secretly pay for them to have abortions.
Marc - No, during the off season
Steve - Only if Sheetz is out of paper towels again.......
Gobo - No, but shortly thereafter.
Sean - Some civil lawsuits, but no arrests.
Rob - Once, for drunk and disorderly conduct.

5. Who will lead the team in touchdowns scored?

DYM - Santonio Holmes
Phil - Santonio Holmes
Michael - Parker
Messiah - Willie Parker
Donald - Hines Ward. Or Willie Parker. Or Rashard Mendenhall. Or Santonio Holmes. Or Heath Miller. Or Frank Summers. Or.......Ummm, how many guesses do I get?
Marc - Holmes
Steve - William Parker. I guarantee a BIG season for # 39.
Gobo - Holmes
Sean - Fast Willie Parker with 10 TDs. I should have drafted him in one of my fantasy leagues!
Rob - Rashard Mendenhall

6. Season prediction (please include the team record) + Any other thoughts/predictions:

DYM - The Steelers will be awesome, #1 defense, top 10 offense, and another SB run. 13-3 record.

Phil - 11-5, AFC North champions. It's extraordinarily difficult to repeat as Super Bowl champions. I think we're going to have another good year and win the division but lose a close-game heartbreaker in the playoffs. Maybe that's just what I'm used to as a fan. Despite our success, I wouldn't know what to do with myself if I didn't have something to complain about when it comes to the Steelers.

Michael - 15-1 - The Steelers have a great chance to go undefeated. The Steelers should win another Super Bowl, if they get by Tennessee on Thursday, their only stumbling block to an undefeated season might be the Detroit [game].

Messiah - Willie Parker has a return to 2006 greatness, starts all 16 games, finishes in the top 3 in rushing, and will actually make people sad when he leaves after the season. Steelers lose to the Ravens at least once, go 12-4 (losses to Titans, Vikings, Ravens, Dolphins in meaningless last week), but win division due to Ravens' tougher schedule. Will get playoff bye, but facing Colts and Pats in back-to-back weeks could prove too tough, when the regular season schedule was relatively conflict-free.

Donald - 13-3. AFC North champs. AFC champs. Super Bowl champs.

Marc - 12-4 with some distance in the playoffs. Plus, Browns go 0&16

Steve - Take a look at the schedule again - there is no reason why the Steelers can't repeat as AFC North Champions. They play the entire AFC West (Chiefs, Raiders, Broncos, and Chargers), the Lions, and the Browns twice - that is 7 wins right there, with the Chargers being the toughest game. I honestly truly believe (fan bias aside) the Steelers will go 13-3 and return to the Super Bowl. "Big Play" Willie Gay is going to have a breakout season and will lead the team in INT's.

Gobo - 12-4, win AFC North, #2 seed, have to go to Foxboro for the AFC Championship game. I’m not predicting that game because I’m afraid to predict a win, but
It’s too depressing to predict a loss. If they make it to the SB, they win. Lawrence Timmons will have at least 10 sacks and turnovers (INT or FF) combined.

Sean - 12-4 and another division title. I don't want to make any predictions about the playoffs since I may need to do a similar post in January! In addition, instead of the Summer of George, this will be the Fall of Sepulveda!

Rob - 12-4. Steelers beat the Cowboys in Super Bowl XLIV

Feel free to add your own predictions in the comments section.

I also asked these questions to The Restaurant Refugee, and though he declined to make specific predictions, he shared this amazing story from a trip to training camp and meeting Mean Joe Greene.

As a native Washingtonian, it is frequently assumed that I am a fan of the hometown squad*. I take particular pride in resolving this misconception by stating “I am a Pittsburgh Steeler fan by birth and the grace of God.” My father was born in Pittsburgh and the first thing he taught me about football was “you love the Steelers… this is a football.”

As children, my sister and I went to training camps to see our heroes up close. One day my sister had to use the restroom as the practice was breaking. I got to meet Mean Joe Greene, and got him to autograph my jersey. My sister got a wait for the bathroom. Of course, I teased her about her poorly timed bladder and my good fortune. She wrote MJG a letter explaining what happened. He replied with a personal and hand-written note which read:

Thanks for being my number one fan. I am sorry that I didn’t get to meet you on your last visit. I hope these tickets** make up for it. I’ll see you in the stands.
Best Wishes,
Mean Joe Greene

As if this incredibly gracious gesture weren’t enough, Mr. Greene had his letter laminated onto a piece of wood with an autographed picture. It hung in my sister’s room until she bought her own place where it hangs prominently in her living room. I’m not sure where my jersey is.

Regarding this season, my best guess is that the Steelers get back to the playoffs with a first round bye. Beyond that, I have no predictions. I am comforted by the fact that neither the Cowboys nor the Niners are going to get anywhere near a sixth ring this year. We got six and the rest of the league can suck it until somebody else gets there too.

* I cannot believe that in the year 2009 we have a team in the NFL that still bears a name as patently racist and clearly offensive as the moniker of the Washington franchise.

** Tickets were to a game lost to the Bengals but who cares it was still an incredible thing to have done – and yes, we all got to meet him afterwards.

Finally, there will be a live blog here of tonight's Steelers-Titans game. Feel free to add your thoughts while watching the game. Go Steelers!

1 comment:

Marc said...

This was awesome! Thanks!