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View Full Version : Are the Steelers battle tested enough to enter the playoffs



BlitzburghRockCity
12-22-2011, 09:31 PM
The entire AFC North had fairly easy schedule this season, if you looked at the level of difficulty in the opponents for 2011, based on 2010, the North had a strength of schedule near the bottom of the league.

The Steelers have played:
W - Patriots - Playoff team
L - Ravens - Playoff team
W - Bengals - Potential playoff team but probably unlikely now
L - Texans - Playoff team
L - 49ers - Playoff team

They've also played teams like:
W - Arizona - High expectations but started out very slow
W - Titans - who were on a roll and did beat the Ravens, but no longer pose a big threat.
W - Chiefs - Division winners last year but terrible this year.
W - Seahawks - Terrible early in the year but are starting to come on now
W - Browns - Well, they're just Cleveland. Still play them yet on New years weekend.
W - Jaguars - Terrible team except for MJD
? - Rams - coming up this Saturday, terrible team

The problem with the good teams is that the Steelers only beat the Patriots. The Bengals are up and coming but they aren't there yet as we have seen when it comes to them playing the elite teams in the AFC. Everybody else, they've lost too.

Is Pittsburgh battle tested enough this season to ready for the playoffs no matter what seed they get?

Speeed
12-22-2011, 09:48 PM
I just don't feel confident at this point. If you examine the list, it is pretty telling.

We lack results, for the most part, against top-shelf opponents. I am not blaming injuries, but I think they are part of the formula that defines this year's team:

We have had a string of injuries at just about every position. We have had fines, legal issues, suspensions, a stunningly low (anomalous I believe) poor turnover rate, we seem to lose almost every challenged call, poor clock management, an OC that wanted to retire but came back to run the same plays (and even worse), a disproportionate number of questionable calls agains us, and a bunch of plays that "almost were" on both offense and defense.

Last year most of that went our way. For whatever reason, luck, karma, or whatever, we just can't catch a break. I honestly don't think officials are against us either, I don't want to insinuate that, I just think that officiating is just that bad.

Additionally, I think teams play us harder, and we play a bit softer. It is frustrating. With all of that, I am happy with 10-4, and although my heart wants to go to the SB, my brain tells me it ain't happening.

Steelersfan
12-22-2011, 09:49 PM
Yes, but only if healthy. They have enough vets that playing on the road is no biggie. The bye and health would of meant more!

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BlitzburghRockCity
12-22-2011, 10:28 PM
Last year most of that went our way. For whatever reason, luck, karma, or whatever, we just can't catch a break. I honestly don't think officials are against us either, I don't want to insinuate that, I just think that officiating is just that bad.

That's a good point, last year there were times when the luck did bounce our way at key times. When players were able to step up and come up with the big play to save the game. This year that has only happened a handful of times. A telling sign was the Baltimore game at Heinz. It was IMO the key turning point in the season. When you allow a division opponent or anyone to drive 92 yds on you in 2 minutes and score a TD to win. Something with your defense is not right.

Now yes they were able to come up with some big plays this year, like in the KC game or the Bengals games, but by in large we haven't seen them really dominant many teams this year.

jnes1216
12-22-2011, 10:48 PM
I think the team is battle tested, they are older (esp on defense as we know) and that experience will help them when needed. I think a good question is... are they "pushing it" for the regular season or are the veterans doing enough to win and then wanting to turn it on for the post season. I'm not suggesting they're not trying to win every game, but we haven't seen that complete game and that suggests to me a lack of focus. Whether its on the coaches or players or both I don't know.

elephantman
12-22-2011, 11:33 PM
Yes, but only if healthy. They have enough vets that playing on the road is no biggie. The bye and health would of meant more!

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they have no depth...they need a healthy Harrison and woodley in the playoffs...these young LB's cant get the job done yet or maybe never..woodley and harrison havnt played together in 8-9 games now...Pouncy needs to be healthy too...we have no depth with the pro bowl players... woodley and Pouncy (and ben of course) ALL need to be (close to)100% healthy

BlitzburghRockCity
12-23-2011, 12:06 PM
Every time you turn around, something else is happening to give the Steelers a shot at a higher seed. Last weekend they had it all in front of them and couldn't pull it off. Now with the Texans losing, Pittsburgh could get the #2 seed if they win out and Baltimore losing 1 of their last 2.


The Houston Texans (http://espn.go.com/nfl/team/_/name/hou/houston-texans)' loss on Thursday night might end up being a win for the Pittsburgh Steelers (http://espn.go.com/nfl/team/_/name/pit/pittsburgh-steelers).

http://a.espncdn.com/i/teamlogos/nfl/med/pit.gif
Now, the Steelers will take the AFC's No. 2 seed if they win out and the Ravens lose one of their final two regular-season games. Before Houston's surprising loss to Indianapolis, Pittsburgh (10-4) had the same record as the Texans (10-5) and would have lost any tiebreaker because it lost to Houston earlier this season.

The Steelers, who wrap up the regular season against St. Louis (2-12) and Cleveland (4-10), still need help to get a first-round bye and a home playoff game. The Ravens have to lose to either the Browns on Saturday or at Cincinnati (8-6) in the regular-season finale.

The Texans' loss didn't really help Baltimore in terms of a tiebreaker against Houston. The Ravens (10-4) already owned the advantage over Houston because they beat the Texans in the regular season.

Farrior Fan
12-23-2011, 02:49 PM
I will say that yes we are fine going into the playoffs and here is why:

The Steelers have played:
W - Patriots - Playoff team - We whipped them
L - Ravens - Playoff team - first game of the year, we looked terrible. Second game vs. the Ravens we outplayed them except for on the last couple of drives. We can beat them even on the road
W - Bengals - Potential playoff team but probably unlikely now Beat them twice
L - Texans - Playoff team Really early in the year, and they are no longer a threat...just ask the Colts
L - 49ers - Playoff team - Nothing went right in this game. Turnovers killed us and we were playing with Ben at 40% and without our best Defensive player.

Excuses will get us nowhere, but I feel we are better than any other AFC team if/when healthy. To be honest I fear the Chargers as much as the Ravens at this point. No other team concerns me at ALL. Only time will tell.

igor0190
12-23-2011, 03:26 PM
A warm up game VS Denver would probable be a good thing...

Troyisabeast_43
12-23-2011, 05:39 PM
This Steelers team can still get to the Super Bowl and beat anybody if they play like they are capable of every single week. I still think even if the Steelers are a wildcard team they at least will find a way to make it to the AFC Championship game...

StillersSound
12-23-2011, 07:10 PM
I'm a believer in the Steelers don't open up the whole playbook in the regular season. Only games I think they attacked like playoff games this year was the Patriots, last Bengals game because if they lost they would have been tied, and of course the San Fran game which they failed miserably.

But I think playing in the best division in football, AFC North will always have you battle tested. Those AFC North games are the type of games that win playoff games. Am I confident? I was but not after the San Fran game.

connecticutsteel
12-24-2011, 05:29 AM
As silly as this sounds in my mind we won the second Ravens game . We will be ready for the Playoffs that much i know.Honestly i think we play better when we aren't waiting around at home .During the mnf game i couldn't help but think if we didn,t have 10 days offwe would have played better . Dixon should have played he would have ran all over them:imho::cope:

LatrobePA
12-24-2011, 11:01 AM
Yes when healthy, they haven't been all season long though!

Thisoneguy555
12-24-2011, 10:30 PM
If the Steelers have to play on the road in the playoffs, they're screwed, they've played very poorly on the road this season, even in their wins, they played poor, just good enough to win.
I don't trust this team on the road at all. This isn't the 2005 Steelers who had a better road record than they did home record.

BlitzburghRockCity
12-26-2011, 02:55 PM
I'm not completely out of hope that they can rally together on the road in the playoffs but then I'm again I'm not that confident either. They are a veteran team that has proven they can do it on the road when it counts.

The Broncos have suddenly come back down to earth these last 2 weeks so if the Steelers end up going there I'm not that concerned.

Speeed
12-26-2011, 03:01 PM
But, I do believe that would be sans Ryan Clark.


I'm not completely out of hope that they can rally together on the road in the playoffs but then I'm again I'm not that confident either. They are a veteran team that has proven they can do it on the road when it counts.

The Broncos have suddenly come back down to earth these last 2 weeks so if the Steelers end up going there I'm not that concerned.

CowherPower
12-26-2011, 10:16 PM
That's a good point if the Steelers do end up going to Denver for the post season opening round. Not having Ryan Clark in the lineup is going to affect them. He's had a good year so far and especially since the bye week he's been playing great.

I like Ryan Mundy, he's a very capable backup. It's not like the secondary would fall apart if he comes into the game but I would say Clark is probably the bigger presence of the 2.