View Full Version : Report Card for Falcons game

10-23-2006, 09:22 AM

Quarterback: Ben Roethlisberger and Charlie Batch combined to complete 24 of 35 passes for 433 yards, five TDs and no interceptions, the most passing yards since the overtime game with Atlanta in 2002 (473). Roethlisberger passed for 238 yards and three TDs and did a great job distributing the ball to his wide receivers. Batch was 8 of 13 for 195 yards and two TDs.

Running back: Willie Parker had 47 yards on 20 carries, and that includes a 16-yard run. After rushing for 78 yards last week, Najeh Davenport had just one carry for minus-1 yard.

Receivers: Hines Ward had eight catches for 171 yards, both season highs, and also had a career-best three touchdown catches. Santonio Holmes had a season-high five catches for 91 yards and Nate Washington had a touchdown and a 49-yard catch to set up the final touchdown. But Washington had a false-start penalty with eight seconds remaining at the Falcons' 33 that deprived the Steelers of a chance to attempt a winning field goal.

Offensive line: The line has had a difficult time putting solid performances together, and this was an inconsistent one. The Steelers rushed for 55 yards on 26 attempts, their second-lowest output of the season. But Roethlisberger and Batch had good protection and plenty of time to throw.

Defensive line: The Steelers did a good job containing the Falcons' running game for three quarters and held Warrick Dunn to 69 yards on 26 carries. But the Falcons had 131 of their 173 rushing yards -- the most by an opponent this season -- in the fourth quarter and overtime when Casey Hampton was out with a hamstring injury.

Linebackers: The Steelers did not generate any outside pressure on Michael Vick, who was sacked just once and was rarely hurried from the pocket. And they didn't make any big plays when the Falcons scored four touchdowns on four turnovers. Linebacker James Farrior had a team-high eight solo tackles and intercepted a deflected pass near the end of the first half after a 58-yard kick return and penalty.

Secondary: It's hard to blame any unit when the Falcons' first four scoring drives, all off turnovers or a muffed onside kick, totaled only 124 yards. But Vick passed for 232 yards and threw a career-high four touchdown passes. And nobody could cover TE Alge Crumpler, who had three touchdown catches. Troy Polamalu was outstanding, making eight tackles and intercepting a pass.

Special teams: Twomistakes led to two touchdowns by the Falcons. Santonio Holmes fumbled a punt return, his third in two games, and Tyrone Carter dropped an onside kick that was recovered by the Falcons. The kickoff coverage was abysmal in the first half, allowing Allen Rossum returns of 45 and 58 yards.

Coaching: The Steelers pushed the Falcons around in the first half, but mistakes allowed the Falcons to operate with a short field and score four TDs. Offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt never stopped attacking the Falcons' secondary, even without Roethlisberger. Bill Cowher watched three receivers get an excessive-celebration penalty after a TD, nearly resulting in another TD by the Falcons.

Yep this pretty much sums it up. ST, lack of a consistent running game, turnovers, lack of pressure on the QB. We saw all of it at different times of the game.

It's nice to be reminded that Ben and our offense still has the weapons available to play in a shootout when we have too. Problem is when we play in a shootout we don't usually win because it means too many other things are not going right on defense and in the running game.

House of Steel
10-23-2006, 09:47 AM
I agree with everything you mentioned, TG. Excellent analysis. It sure sucked. You should of graded the coaching staff, I would of gave them a B-

10-23-2006, 11:58 AM
Both Ben and Charlie and the WR's were the highlight of the gme yesterday, especially after everything they have been through so far this season. It was good to see them put of the yardage but I would prefer to see a win.

It seems like the minute things start to go bad the coaches jump ship and try something else, which leads to Najeh not getting into the game (He actually did just not like last week). For all we know Najeh could have come into the game and given the Steelers a spark like Norwood did for the Falcons :dunno:

the3 defense as a whole I would give a C-!

10-23-2006, 03:00 PM
IMO, Cowher didnt put Najeh into the game because we weren't having success running the ball period. The chances of najeh providing a spark in the running game weren't very good. This was a game of passing all day long, neither team could run on the other until the 4th quarter when Atlanta got 100 yds of their total for the day.

Had we not turned the ball over so much and allowed the falcons to get back into it I would imagine we would have turned to the run more in the 2nd half with Willie and Najeh.

10-23-2006, 03:05 PM
That's really want the game comes down to... turnovers! Especially in the Steelers own territory, that is asking way to much of you defense to try and protect a short field. Although, good defenses usually do that :bigthumb:

10-23-2006, 03:09 PM
Turnovers have been our downfall all year. It doesnt matter how good we stop the run, how many TD's we throw, how well our running game is doing either. When you turn the ball over, especially in your own territory you're just asking for trouble. Even the best defenses can't stop everybody all the time, sooner or later they'll get beat it's just inevitable. It's the job of the offense to get the ball and keep it till you score.

Ive never seen a BC coached team have so many turnovers, especially ones at crucial points in the game.

Black@Gold Forever32
10-23-2006, 03:32 PM
Ive never seen a BC coached team have so many turnovers, especially ones at crucial points in the game.

I havn't either. This is why I have some doubt about Bill Cowher giving his 100 percent to the team. But hopefully the Steelers fan turn it around. You are right if the Steelers stop turning the ball over that will correct alot of the problems. But the defense can't have let downs like they did yesterday. Plus the special teams better get their act together.

10-23-2006, 04:01 PM
Still, to only give Najeh the ball 1 time? Maybe a bigger, more physical guy like Najeh could have gotten some yardage and helped out Willie a little. And where were the screens? The Falcons were getting pretty good pressure at times, and what do you do to stop a blitz? Screen passes. Najeh has shown he's good at those, and Santonio is so fast you know he'd be able to pick up some yards on a screen. Why didn't we use them?

10-23-2006, 04:04 PM
We did several screens yesterday and none of them worked. Atleast 2 of them to Willie, 1 to Verron, and they tried to set up another if I remember right but the front 7 of the falcons was getting too much pressure for us have time to develop the screens. Most of the pressure yesterday came from right up the middle and the RB's didnt have time to release and get open for a screen.