Monday, September 12, 2011

Steelers-Raves Recap (Every Little Thing Gonna Be All Right)

51-0. That was the final score of the Steelers-Browns game on September 10, 1989, the first game of the season. The Steelers followed that dreadful performance at home by losing at Cincinnati 41-10. The Steelers team managed to fight back during the 1989 season to reach the playoffs, defeat the Houston Oilers in the wild card round and narrowly lose to John Elway and the Denver Broncos during the next round.

31-0. On September 7, 2003, the Buffalo Bills defeated the New England Patriots by that score at home. The Patriots bounced back from the loss by going 14-2 and winning the Super Bowl.

Although the Steelers played one of their worst games in recent years by losing 35-7 to the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday, the world is not ending. The season is not over. Mike Tomlin and Dick LeBeau didn’t become terrible coaches overnight. Ben Roethlisberger didn't turn into Cliff Stoudt. It was a terrible game against the hated rival, but again, it’s one game (the first game!) of the NFL season. I expect the team to rebound nicely next week against the Seattle Seahawks

Just a few notes about the game:

Did any member of the Steelers play well on Sunday? I’d give a gold star to Mike Wallace with 8 catches for 107 yards.

The Ravens ran 31 times for 170 yards or 5.5 yards per carry. That’s amazing against last season’s top-ranked rushing defense.

Ravens TE Ed Dickson caught 5 passes for 59 yards and a touchdown. He also had another long catch negated by a penalty. Dickson looked better today than Todd Heap did over the past three years.

Ed Reed is a very good safety. Not as good as Troy in my book (can you prove that I don’t have a book?), but the second best safety in the league. However, his two interceptions couldn’t have been easier. Roethlisberger threw both passes directly to Reed. I could have caught them.

Finally, I’m sure that you noticed this fight. Yes, Ike Taylor started it and deserved the personal foul penalty. My question is how was there only one penalty when it appeared that referee was knocked unconscious or possibly died? (Look at the top right of the screen around the :30 second mark.)

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