There are a lot of things to be optomistic about as a Steeler fan.
I haven't re-watched the game yet - but I think Ben had a pocket to throw from pretty often - I think the o-line -especialy the front - are improving. Our tackles struggle, but....
Hines Ward is playing very well again this year. Washington has become much more reliable and explosive.
The defense plays well all the time. In the second half, they had trouble creating pressure with 4 rushing like they did in the first half, but with Woodley out, that was going to be a challenge. That, a HOF QB and some short fields killed us yesterday. Ike Taylor was very good - but very unlucky. William Gay seemed to show up making plays as well. Troy is back and the front line is dominant against the run.
Mewelde Moore has been praised ad-nausium on this site, but he was an awesome pick up.
Our weak link right now is that Ben is pressing and impatient. He is also hurt and looks like he has little power to throw. Once in a while you see him whip one in there (like the throw last week to Ward at the 1) but most of his passes float. Even the last throw to the endzone last night looked like it took everything he had and it was a moon ball. This is a very tough situation for the coaching staff. I think Ben hesitates to make the tough throws like the skinny post. Hines usually catches a bunch of these - the TD against Houston was that pattern (before the injury)- but it takes velocity and confidence from the QB to throw this in the redzone- ours has neither. Other than the bomb to Washington that was called back against the Giants, I can't recall a deep ball from him that hasn't been underthrown.
But have faith - Ben isn't a fluke and didn't forget how to play. He didn't take too much punishment Sunday - maybe we make some progress this week and he can actually practice. He just needs to get healthy and regain some confidence.
Also, don't get too crazy about Baltimore yet. They are winning games they should win, but are still unproven. This is going to come down to our game on 12/14. We will see who they are the next few weeks as they take on NYG, PHI, and WAS.