PDA

View Full Version : Yes the Steelers are passing more in '06



BlitzburghRockCity
10-29-2006, 03:03 AM
http://www.post-gazette.com/pg/06302/733916-66.stm


By Ed Bouchette, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette



A revolution might be taking place right under the Steelers' noses without them even noticing it. They're passing the torch, along with everything else lately.

The offense that has run more often in each of the past two seasons than any other in the National Football League has turned star-struck. They've become infatuated with the passing game, such as it can be for them.

Not since coach Bill Cowher ditched the pyrotechnic air show erected by offensive coordinator Mike Mularkey with quarterback Tommy Maddox in 2002 and 2003 have the Steelers thrown the ball so often.

They have passed 53 percent of the time through six games. That's certainly not a radical amount because the average NFL team passes more often, 55 percent of the time. But it's a whopping transformation for the stodgy Steelers of the past two seasons.

In 2004, when Cowher became so determined to return to the ground game, the Steelers ran 61 percent of the time and passed 39 percent. Last season, they ran 57 percent of the time. This season, they are running 47 percent of the time, just 3 percent more than they did in the 6-10 season of 2003 that caused Cowher to admit publicly he was wrong to fall so much for the new passing philosophy.

Despite the abrupt turnaround, neither Cowher nor many of his players believe there has been a shift in offensive philosophy.

"I think we have the talent to be a passing team," receiver Hines Ward said. "But me knowing us, that won't happen."

Rookie Santonio Holmes said it all when he listed the priorities for the wide receivers.

"Our job right now is to block first, then catch the ball and make big plays when we need it."

Somehow, blocking won't be high on the priority list of Randy Moss when the Steelers (2-4) play the Raiders (1-5) in Oakland at 4:15 p.m. today.

"Oh, man, with the talent we have, I'm pretty sure that it can be a passing team," Holmes said. "But, right now, we're going to stick with the basics, we're going to continue to win football games the way we know how to, by running the football."

Perhaps that is why they are not winning. Every time the Steelers have run more than passed in Cowher's 14 seasons as coach, they had a winning record. In their only three losing seasons under him, they have passed more than run.

I know we have Big Ben and he's a beast...but it's so true that when we pass more than we run we usually lose. We need to have balance and maintain time of possession. We aren't a west coast offense here using the dink and dunk passes as a running game. We are a running team first, that's who we are and who we've been. We're a physical team that comes out and punches you in the mouth and makes you wish you didn't have to get out of bed come monday morning.

A few years back when Tommy was on fire setting team records for yards and attempts; what did we do that year in the post season? Not a damn thing. If we don't run the ball, we don't win.

Captcoolhand
10-29-2006, 09:11 AM
I got to agree, the passing game is not the best option in Pittsburgh.
IMO, Our players are more run blocking orientated than they are Pass blocking. Holmes admited that, its 1st Block than Catch.

Black@Gold Forever32
10-29-2006, 10:42 AM
This article is total bull ****. Yes the Steelers are passing more. But the main reason the Steelers are 2-4 this year is of their sloppy and inconsistent play. The Steelers passing the ball more isn't the reason why this team is lossing. If the Steelers quit turning the ball over and plays consistent then they will start winning.

True Ben's 7 INT's were big reasons why the Steelers lost 3 in a row. But that was more of Ben regaining his edge for the game. Against the Falcons the passing game was the only reason the Steelers were in that game and had a chance to win. The Steelers couldn't run the ball worth a damn against the Falcons.

Thats why I think its total B.S. to compare this year to 2002 and 2003. I will say this. Why draft a QB in the first round if never to use to his full ability? You don't draft QB's in the first round to be game managers and only pass the ball 19 or 20 times a game. If the defense can't handle being on the field longer since the Steelers are passing more. Then maybe the defense isn't as good as we all thought. I just think this article is a lame excuse for the teams 2-4 start.

AZ_Steeler
10-29-2006, 11:41 AM
When I was putting up the gameday thread and checking stat rankings, in 1 week the Steelers jumped from ranked 24th in the league for passing offense to 9th! That is one huge jumped but do bad the defense isn't really built for a shoot out type of game especially when the offense turns over the ball!

I'm all for a more balanced offense, we seem to win most of those games :dunno:

Black@Gold Forever32
10-29-2006, 11:52 AM
When I was putting up the gameday thread and checking stat rankings, in 1 week the Steelers jumped from ranked 24th in the league for passing offense to 9th! That is one huge jumped but do bad the defense isn't really built for a shoot out type of game especially when the offense turns over the ball!

I'm all for a more balanced offense, we seem to win most of those games :dunno:

Maybe we should get players to build our defense just in case they get caught in a shoot out style game. I'm all for a balanced offense also. But the article is suggesting the reason the Steelers are 2-4 is due to them passing more. Which is total B.S. The Steelers turning the ball over and playing inconsisent is the reasons.

BlitzburghRockCity
10-29-2006, 12:03 PM
The problem with the Steelers though is that we aren't a team that usually wins when we pass more than we run, because that usually means we are turning the ball over, not controlling the time of possession, and we're relying mainly on big plays to run our offense.

When we pass for all those yards it's usually because our defense isn't having the best either but fortunately our offense is clicking at the right time.

Balance is key, I agree. When we run and pass effectively is when we win the most. If Ben throws for 200-250 yds a week and a couple TD's, and we run for atleast 150 yds-200 yds a game, I'll take those numbers anyday. Dont' get me wrong, I'd love to be able to see us throw for a ton of yards and still win whenever we wanted too, but that just doesnt happen very often.

Black@Gold Forever32
10-29-2006, 12:16 PM
The problem with the Steelers though is that we aren't a team that usually wins when we pass more than we run, because that usually means we are turning the ball over, not controlling the time of possession, and we're relying mainly on big plays to run our offense.

When we pass for all those yards it's usually because our defense isn't having the best either but fortunately our offense is clicking at the right time.

Balance is key, I agree. When we run and pass effectively is when we win the most. If Ben throws for 200-250 yds a week and a couple TD's, and we run for atleast 150 yds-200 yds a game, I'll take those numbers anyday. Dont' get me wrong, I'd love to be able to see us throw for a ton of yards and still win whenever we wanted too, but that just doesnt happen very often.

I understand all of this Top Gunn. All I'm saying is the article suggests that this team is more like the 2002 and 2003 Steelers teams and the reason the Steelers are 2-4 so far this year is due to the fact the Steelers are passing more. I disagree.

The Steelers turning the ball over and giving opposing offenses a short field and playing inconsistent are the main reasons. Plus horrible special teams play all year. The passing game isn't at fault.

The only reason the Steelers were in that game against the Falcons and had a chance to win was thanks to the passing game. The running game stunk against the Falcons. I'm huge Willie Parker fan and I'm not taking shots at him. But you just can't run the ball down the throats of a defense every week in the NFL. The Steelers stop the turning the ball over and play consistent then they will win. It won't matter if the Steelers are passing or running more. Thats just my :2cents:.

BlitzburghRockCity
10-29-2006, 12:50 PM
I agree the reason we are 2-4 is not because we are passing more, it is indeed because of our turnovers, poor ST play, lack of consistently running the ball, defense can't get off the field, inconsistent OL play, you name it and its all a factor.

Perhaps what the writer was referring too was how we relied almost solely on the pass in the 02-03 seasons which led to more turnovers so maybe he thinks we're headed back down that road now :dunno:

Black@Gold Forever32
10-29-2006, 12:56 PM
I agree the reason we are 2-4 is not because we are passing more, it is indeed because of our turnovers, poor ST play, lack of consistently running the ball, defense can't get off the field, inconsistent OL play, you name it and its all a factor.

Perhaps what the writer was referring too was how we relied almost solely on the pass in the 02-03 seasons which led to more turnovers so maybe he thinks we're headed back down that road now :dunno:

Well didn't Ed Bouchette write the article? The man knows his stuff and is a very good writer. I just think this article blows and its lame suggesting that this team compares to the 2002 and 2003 Steelers teams.

One big difference the QB for one. I thought Tommy had a very good year in 2002. But it was rather stupid of Cowher and the Steelers coaches to think Maddox had the talent to carry this team in 2003.

BlitzburghRockCity
10-29-2006, 01:46 PM
Yeah Ed is a good writer, and I rarely disagree with most of what he says. I guess you can take the article a couple different ways if you look at it but in any event I will still never understand what was going through Cowhers mind that year trying to change our identity !

Steelersfan
10-29-2006, 02:46 PM
Well didn't Ed Bouchette write the article? The man knows his stuff and is a very good writer. I just think this article blows and its lame suggesting that this team compares to the 2002 and 2003 Steelers teams.

One big difference the QB for one. I thought Tommy had a very good year in 2002. But it was rather stupid of Cowher and the Steelers coaches to think Maddox had the talent to carry this team in 2003.

These teams look more and more alike each week. Maybe it isn't Ben turning the ball over like Maddox but we are still turning the ball over. That combined with some quick scores puts our D is on the field too much. If you ask me as of right now these teams have more in common than not. One thing I'd like to point out though is that this years team is far better talent wise and should be able to turn this around.
And I agree that our D is not built to play in these highscoring games. More times than not we lose them because the D can't stop anyone. Last year we could score quick and then turn to the run to win the game. Not so this year. Should tell you how much The Bus meant to this team.

Koopa
10-29-2006, 03:13 PM
i don't feel like reading the article, but someone said the article said we are losing cause we are passing more......that's some straight up bull ****......ppl better not look at us passing more and losing and say see, we are a run team first......we don't know that.....we don't have a chance to see, cause we dig ourselves in a hole so fast that we have to throw and force ****.....we can't really utilize both.......if we would've came out like we did in the playoffs we'd be badass, setting up the run with the pass.....but then cowher went back to his conservtive when the season started and **** fell apart....we are not a run to set up the pass anymore, willie is not that kind of running back.....we need to go full time to what we did in the playoffs and stop turning the mothersuckin ball over