View Full Version : Steeler WR's in the drop zone

10-02-2006, 01:57 AM

By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

The Steelers have a Juggs machine they use to spit out footballs to their receivers in practice. In games, however, those receivers act as if passes were thrown by Juggles machines.

Through three games, Steelers receivers have dropped at least eight passes and caught 50. Many of the drops came on third downs and could have kept drives moving.

The most glaring examples occurred in the fourth quarter Sept. 24 against Cincinnati. Cedrick Wilson dropped a pass on third-and-5, and then Nate Washington dropped two -- one on third-and-6, the other in the end zone.

The previous week in Jacksonville, Steelers receivers reversed that style, dropping them early and often. Wilson dropped a pass on third-and-5 and Hines Ward dropped one on third-and-8, each killing a first-quarter drive that could have put the Steelers on top early in a game they lost, 9-0. Verron Haynes also dropped a pass in the second quarter.

Washington, who dropped the first pass thrown to him on the first series of the season against Miami, leads the unofficial list with three drops. Wilson and Haynes have two apiece.

"We have had some critical drops on third downs," coach Bill Cowher said.

Every team has dropped receptions and most every receiver will miss a pass now and then. Good teams overcome them. The Seahawks notoriously are the worst in the league dropping passes and they reached the Super Bowl last season.

But drops can lose close games, too. The six drops in the Steelers' past two games are to blame as much as anything for their two losses and seem abnormally high for them.

It's critical that we get this rectified and NOW. If Ben is to get back to being the Ben we know, he needs his playmakers to come through. Take what the defense gives you. Being patient is not something that is foreign to us, after all we're a running team. If it takes us 8 or 9 minutes to drive the length of the field to score then so be it, it plays to our advantage to be in control of the time of possession.

10-02-2006, 02:21 AM
I remember reading something earlier during training camp talking about Troy standing in front of that machine, something like less than 5 yards or somthing :dunno: Hopefully the WR's have taken this page from Troy and are really wokring on this issue. The good thing though, the team seems to be slumping or in a funk now and I would rather it be now then in December!

10-02-2006, 03:00 AM
I don't care if they have to go hire 20 bums off the street to throw them passes, just catch the damn ball.

10-02-2006, 12:46 PM
They get paid quite well to catch footballs so I would hope this has been just a lack of concentration on their parts. If they don't get better I would hope to see Reid out there soon. He can't do much worse plus could help the return team.