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    BlitzburghRockCity's Avatar
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    Defense confident it can bounce back

    http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt.../s_474809.html

    By John Harris
    TRIBUNE-REVIEW
    Friday, October 13, 2006


    This is no time to panic.
    The Steelers are Super Bowl-tested, and everyone on the defense -- well, what's left of the defense -- is confident and at ease in the face of rising adversity.

    With good reason. The Steelers have a lot of talent on defense, with five players making the Pro Bowl the past two seasons.

    Despite a lack of big plays and stops, Steelers defenders believe they will play their best game of the season Sunday against Kansas City at Heinz Field.

    "I honestly think we're still trying to decide what our best weapon is," defensive end Brett Keisel said. "We're just four games into the season. Everyone is nervous, but in this locker room, understand that we're fine.

    "We're only two games behind. We're still OK."

    No Joey Porter. Possibly no Deshea Townsend. First-time starter Arnold Harrison replacing Porter, and 36-year-old linebacker Chad Brown coming out of the bullpen as a last-minute pick-up.

    No problem, the Steelers say.

    One month into the season, the 1-3 Steelers don't have much margin for error. If the Steelers want to make a serious playoff run, they have to fix what's wrong with their defense.

    "Until we finish the deal, teams are going to fight their way back," said Porter, whose streak of consecutive starts will end at 27 because of a hamstring injury. "We had opportunities to put people away. We just haven't done it."

    Porter's blunt analysis of what's wrong with the Steelers defense is enlightening.

    He says, because the Steelers are having trouble scoring points, the defense is unable to dictate down-and-distance. That makes it easier for teams to be multi-dimensional, thereby making it more difficult for the Steelers to set their defense.

    When the Steelers failed to score a touchdown and settled for a field goal and a 10-0 lead against San Diego, the Steelers defense couldn't pin back its ears and turn it loose against quarterback Philip Rivers, Porter said.

    "If we go up, 14-0, it makes their offense go to a whole different ballgame, where we know what they have to do," he said. "It's one-dimensional, where they have to pass. They don't have time to run themselves back into the game.

    "That's what we used to do."

    Instead, San Diego ended the first half with a 80-yard touchdown drive. The Chargers scored 16 unanswered points in the second half and roared to a 23-13 victory.

    After failing on its first three third-down conversions, San Diego's offense converted nine of its next 13.

    "We need to get off the field on third down," Keisel said. "That's what killed us."

    The Steelers are playing the same defense from a year ago. The players are the same. But the results are different.
    Despite a lack of big plays and stops, Steelers defenders believe they will play their best game of the season Sunday against Kansas City at Heinz Field.

    If they can pull this off and go out sunday afternoon and just dominate and put KC away before they have a chance to get back in it, it will go a long way to improving our confidence. We all know when this team is confident going into a game, the sky is the limit. We saw that last year. Stay humble, yet intense and confident.

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    This is a team that doesnt like to lose...i know that no team enjoys losing, but these guys are winners...lets play like them.

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    Living Legend Steelersfan's Avatar
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    Our D is far better with a lead so if the offense can get a 14 point lead the game should be over.
    In the SD game we had a 10-0 lead so just because we didn't go up 14 is no excuse for the D not knowing what to do. We get a 10 point lead and they should be "pinning their ears back!". Make the other team earn everything instead of backing off. Geez I hate it when they do that.

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    I was just thinkin earlier how much this must be botherin all the guys--they HAVE to feel embarrassed, confused, and angry as to why they just can't seem to pull it together on the field.


    Knowin how good they really are and can be--to have this happen, to have everyone talkin about it, analyzin it--it must be eatin them alive.

    A lot is expected of them as Super Bowl champs, and if it's hard for us as fans, think about what it must be like to be the one it's happening to...was just tryin to put myself in THEIR shoes for a bit--not a fun place to be I wouldn't think.

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    AZ_Steeler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steelersfan View Post
    Our D is far better with a lead so if the offense can get a 14 point lead the game should be over.
    In the SD game we had a 10-0 lead so just because we didn't go up 14 is no excuse for the D not knowing what to do. We get a 10 point lead and they should be "pinning their ears back!". Make the other team earn everything instead of backing off. Geez I hate it when they do that.
    In an interview with Porter last night he said this defense is not finishing games! They play 45-50 minutes and shutdown. This will be one key for them to be successful this weekend is to play a full 60 minutes!

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    Top 30 suitanim's Avatar
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    I think the defense is a lot closer to form than the offense. The key stat, IMO, is TOP. We usually dominate, and we are about even this year...that's a bad sign for the offense on a predominantly running team, and it keeps the D out on the filed longer, which is always a bad thing.

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    BlitzburghRockCity's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteelersWoman View Post
    I was just thinkin earlier how much this must be botherin all the guys--they HAVE to feel embarrassed, confused, and angry as to why they just can't seem to pull it together on the field.


    Knowin how good they really are and can be--to have this happen, to have everyone talkin about it, analyzin it--it must be eatin them alive.

    A lot is expected of them as Super Bowl champs, and if it's hard for us as fans, think about what it must be like to be the one it's happening to...was just tryin to put myself in THEIR shoes for a bit--not a fun place to be I wouldn't think.
    If they don't feel bad, embarassed, confused, and angry they should be. This team is so much better than our record indicates. So far it hasnt torn them apart and I don't think it will..by seasons end this team will look back and see how far they've come and hoping looking forward to the playoffs !

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