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Thread: power or finese, you decide

          
   
   
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  1. #1
    2nd String Blitzburghpete's Avatar
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    power or finese, you decide

    Guys this seems to be a hot topic at the moment. I hold no bones about that i think powerr football is the way to go. Before i go any further read this. This is an extract from the book
    "Next man up" by John Feinstein. It's a behind the scenes look at life in the nfl and in this case from the Ravens during 2004.

    "halftime the score is Steelers 10- 7 Ravens"

    "The Steelers seemed to sense that the ravens were on the ropes. They came out the secoind half and put together a long, methodical drive, pounding away on the ground against a defence that wasn't accustomed to being pounded. After Roethlisberger opened the drive with a 7 yard completetion to hines ward, the steelers ran the ball on twelve consecutive plays. Bettis all 260 lbs of him hurtled through the line three straight times. Then Verron Haynes, normally a 3rd string back came in and picked up 28 yards on 4 carries of his own. Back came Bettis to pick up 6 to the ravens 9. The defence tried to clamp down, forcing a 4th and 1 from the 9. Steelers HC Bill Cowher didn't want a field goal, he sensed the kill. He went for it on 4th down and unlike the first half when he had tried to throw the ball on a 4th down, he sent Ben 6 foot 4 241 lbs straight up the middle. He picked up 2 yards and the first down at the 7. Two more Bettis runs put the ball ont the 2. Then Ben rolled left on play action and found TE J Tuman wide open in the back of the end zone for the touchdown.

    The drive had taken 8.34 and the lead was now 17-7. Beyond that the drive had taken all the swagger out of the defence. The steelers had no fear of Lewis ( ray lewis mlb ) they were running the ball right at him. If someone had suggested to the defence that anyone could run the ball 12 straight times on them on a single drive, he would have been laughed out of the room. But that was exactly what had happened."

    Good stuff eh? What's my point. With the higlighted parts do you think anything other than a power running game would have had the same effect on the Ravens? My point is a 3 yards and dust running game, if succesful, does more than chew the clock up so the opposing team has less time to score back against you, wear the opposing dee out, keeps your dee fresh, but it phycologically demolishes oppnents as well. It can't be measured but after reading this book this is a HUGE factor to teams and players that we don't see for players who think and have to believe they are the best. This game was crucial for the ravens as their season was on the line in that very game. Only a power running game could have done this to them, nothing else.

    What i'm getting at is, forget the personnel we have at the moment ie Parker, find supporters of other teams and ask them if they face the steelers what type of offence would they fear most.

    A power running eat the clock wear them down offence?
    or a finese offence?


    Last edited by Blitzburghpete; 05-24-2007 at 04:41 AM.

  2. #2
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    I agree that the thought of Pittsburgh not being considered strictly a grind 'em out type of team is a bit disconcerting. And as long as you have the right personel, it can help you control the clock and win a lot of games. But for whatever reason, a grind 'em out big power back didn't seem to even factor into the direction that we appear to be headed in now.

    What's helped me deal with NOT takin a big back in the draft is this--I used to think of Indy as "soft"--basically it was either done in the air, or it wasn't done at all. But watchin their last few games, I began to see a shift of some sort...something magical happen--and I knew it when I saw it.

    Before those last few, I'd have went with the Bears to win the big one--but when I saw that shift happen--they tightened up the O-line, they began to be able to run it pretty much whenever they chose, Peyton was takin what the other D was givin him thru the air, and (to my shock and amazement I might add) they seemed to get TOUGH as a team--and I was thinkin "This is NOT Indy's style". But they wore it well! I changed my mind and went with Indy to win it--because at the end, they had the right blend goin on.

    What I'm sayin is, (if done RIGHT) you can mess with the other team's head in many ways--just like Indy did. If the other team KNOWS you can throw on them (short AND long) AND run on them whenever you choose, that's gonna affect them just as much. It's GOT to, because they're gonna know you can do it however you want, and there's not a darn thing they can do to stop ya. It even affected the big bad Bears.

    I realize this is just my own opinion, and I'm sure many will disagree--I just know what I saw happen, and know that WE could do the right mix even better than Indy--because we're already a tougher team than they'd ever be. We just need to take the best of OUR traits--mix it with the best of THEIRS and dang--we'd be a sight to behold!

    I can imagine it now--the fear in the heart of other teams when they know the "Hit 'em/stop 'em hard, get what you can get on the ground, throw and take what you can get thru the air, sack their QB Steelers" roll into town. So I just think we can do a mix of power and (if you will) finesse--and if we do it RIGHT, the word "finesse" won't ever be used to describe us in any way
    Last edited by SteelersWoman; 05-24-2007 at 08:33 AM.

  3. #3
    Draft Pick 25MVPKing's Avatar
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    To me, power and finesse are not mutally exclusive.

    Willie Parker is power and finesse.
    Hines Ward is power and finesse.
    Ben Roethlisberger is power and finesse.
    Heath Miller is power and finesse.
    Troy Polamalu is power and finesse.

    Those four are just the first four that came to mind, but the point is: not only are power and finesse qualities that can be found in the same players and team... we have the personnel to run both style games.

    Power and finesse are both extremely important and in any given situation, the Steelers can use the one that will benefit them the most.
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    2nd String Blitzburghpete's Avatar
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    Steeler woman - Understand what your saying about Indy but as good as ben is he ain't no Peyton Manning. Only Peyton can do what he does and mess with opposing dee's like that.

    25MVPKing - Parkeer is NOT power, he's about speed. Sure he's tough, but one things for sure he's not a grind it out back. I don't want to get into the Parker debate as i said forget we have him for this conversation.

    My point is, football is fundamentally a game where the players generally are trying to proove who is bigger stonger and quicker. I don't fear the steelers playing say the Broncos or the Pats ( i regard them as finese teams ) I fear us playing team's like the Bears or the Ravens or Jags. Teams that play Physical football.

    I'll put it this way, i play rugby, and when i play what puts the fear in me is if the guy standing in front of me is bigger and stronger. I know i'm going to have a long day with him. ( fortunately i'm 6-1 and 250 lbs so this rarely happens ) If he's a little smaller but smarter i'm not worried at all.

    Apply that to smash mouth football. Think of what you read in that 1st post of mine. The Ravens were only 10 points behind with loads of time to play yet they were sooo demoralized because of the way they were physically dominated by power football it was already over. Finese football would never have had that effect on them. They knew they couldn't do anything about the power so in essence "gave up". If they were playing a finese team for sure they wouldn't have thought that they would have thought lets be smart and we're still in it.

    Thats my point. We have not got the players with the skill level of a Manning or Brady to dominate with Finese football, yet finese football is the route we now appear to be going and i think it's wrong and i fear for our team.

    Steeler football is power it really is that simple. I think it is Madden who said something like football is all about if you hit the guy in front of you harder than the guy hits you. He's not talking about being clever ( finese ) he's talking about brute strength ( power )


  5. #5
    Draft Pick 25MVPKing's Avatar
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    If the Ravens are a power team and you take a lead (whether through finesse or power) shouldn't they have a harder, longer time getting back in it? Had we been playing the Colts or Pats, they could have had a touchdown in 2 minutes to diminish the lead. So in that case, doesn't it hurt us to not be able to score quickly?

    We can't always take 8 minutes to score and I think where we're heading is a place that can score in 2 minutes or 12 minutes. The difference is who you're playing--what kind of offense and defense they have. I think versatility is something the Colts have that we're striving for.

    As I said in a thread yesterday, the difference between the Colts rushing yards and our rushing yards is negligible. IMHO, I think being multi-faceted is something we can, should, and will do.

    Thanks for letting me respond.
    Last edited by 25MVPKing; 05-24-2007 at 11:45 AM.
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    2nd String Blitzburghpete's Avatar
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    Had we been playing the Colts or Pats, they could have had a touchdown in 2 minutes to diminish the lead. So in that case, doesn't it hurt us to not be able to score quickly?

    Fair point but the longer you pound the ball the easier it will get as the opposing dee will get worn out. A quick 2 minute drive and against our dee and it's still fit.

    I fear if we try to be masters of both power and finese we'll be master of neither.

    There is a time and a place for quick scoring, but if you hog the ball with time control offence you literlarly HAVE to make the other team catch up.


    Example 1st quarter steelers 7 min drive fg,
    colts 3 and out
    steelers another 7 min drive td quarter over!!! Steel 10 - 0

    Your literlarly not giving the chance to respond. This is how we did it to get a 15 -1 record.
    Ok say we go finese

    1 quart steelers 4 min drive td
    colts 3 and out
    steelers 5 min drive fg. Steel 10 - 0 but there is still time for the colts to respond. They don't have to change their game plan

    Yeah we need the ability to score quick especially if we get behind - Enter Parker -

    Ok if i was coach the balance would be 75% power 25% finese
    I think we're going down a route of the opposite 25% power 75% finese.

    Use parker in a single back formation but 3 wr's to spread the dee
    Alternatively use pakrer in a pro set with Davenport in the FB/RB role.


    But i digress because the point is the phycologocal effect power footbal has as shown from another teams point of view who haved played us.

    IMO Power is the way to go.

  7. #7
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    I don't think 25 or I either one disagree about the power being of great importance Pete. I just know that while the run run pass run has worked in many games--in others, it's been somewhat a drawback. We still need to be able to (as 25 said) get some points in a hurry if we need them during certain situations.

    All we're tryin to say (in so many words) is that you can have (if it's worked for hard enough) the best of both worlds--you don't have to give up power to possess "finesse" when it's called for. You just are able to do what's needed WHEN needed--instead of being more one dimensional.

    As far as Ben goes--I thought he did pretty well his first two seasons--and he still hasn't played half as long as Peyton.......When he's at his peak (like when he was a rookie) he can find his guy and deliver the ball pretty well! And now he's studyin films, gettin in more practice time with our receivers than he probably ever has before, and he's gaining experience all the way...I look for him to blow some socks off THIS year

    And if we have a great offense AND defense, who's gonna stop us?

    Of course "great" is the pivotal word--without doin everything great, it could just end up bein a real mess lol But I've got faith

    Anyway--whether we like it or hate it--no big power back for us (at least this season). So we just have to make the best of it. I'm tryin to do that with hypin myself up to know that you CAN do both--as I said, Indy did it the last 3 or 4 games of last season--and (IMHO) it wasn't just Peyton winnin those games, it was the whole team. Cause the few games before that (when it WAS all on Peyton), they didn't do as well.

  8. #8
    Draft Pick 25MVPKing's Avatar
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    Thank you for clarifying SteelersWoman. I wasn't discounting the importance of the power game, but as SteelersWoman so eloquently put it, all power all the time is "one dimensional".

    I wonder if Tomlin and Colbert didn't find a powerback they liked this year in the draft. Michael Bush is the one I hear everyone saying we should have gone after. Maybe they weren't convinced of his character or his ability to make 25 carries a game every week for 8 years. I don't know why they passed on him. I thought LenDale White would have been a good pickup in last year's draft, but (at least in his current situation) he's not turning heads. Maybe Tomlin and Colbert have prospects for '08 in their sights or have a lot of confidence in the personnel they already have (Davenport, Kuhn, Barlow, Russell).

    Then again everyone in SteelerNation was calling for Posluzney and I think Timmons and Woodley will be beasts!
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    With offenses and defenses changing damn near every day, we have to be flexible in how we prepare for every team. It would be great to just stick to smashmouth but teams will prepare for that and will stop it. Another reason Cowher hardly had any success in the postseason, he stubbornly stuck to a certain game plan and wouldn't deviate from it. In this day and age in the NFL, teams have to be able to do a wide variety of things on offense.


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    SA's #1 Pirates Fan Tetris Champion Black@Gold Forever32's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DIESELMAN View Post
    With offenses and defenses changing damn near every day, we have to be flexible in how we prepare for every team. It would be great to just stick to smashmouth but teams will prepare for that and will stop it. Another reason Cowher hardly had any success in the postseason, he stubbornly stuck to a certain game plan and wouldn't deviate from it. In this day and age in the NFL, teams have to be able to do a wide variety of things on offense.
    Great post Diesel and I agree totally. The NFL is adjust on the fly league anymore. The days of winning a championship by just pounding the pigskin down the throat of every team are over. Great point on Cowher's stubborness with his power running game in the post-season. Plus when you factor in coaches like Belichick who take away your strengths and force you to beat him with your weakness then you pretty much need a balanced attack in todays NFL.

    Also Cowher finally won the Super Bowl with a speed RB as his starting RB and also by opening up the offense in the play-offs. Lets face it was Ben's arm in those three play-off games that got us to the Super Bowl rather then the RB's legs.

    Plus looking at our current players on offense I think their talents fit a spread offense more then a true power offense especially Willie Parker.

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