Visit NFL from the sidelines on the new Observer-Reporter site:

Friday, November 13, 2009

Who I like

Really, this is one of the easier picks I've made this season. The Bengals are a legitimate playoff contender, but they aren't coming into Heinz Field and winning. It's just not going to happen.

And if you think back to the first meeting, the Steelers dominated it for about 3 1/2 quarters. Even with Cincinnati's two late TD drives, the Steelers still outgained the Bengals by 100 yards.

An interception return for a touchdown caused by Santonio Holmes and botched snap on a PAT made a big difference.

How did the botched PAT make a difference. Had the Bengals made the PAT after the interception return in the third quarter, they'd have been behind 20-17 and facing fourth-and-11 with under a minute remaining. Marvin Lewis would have kicked the tying field goal instead of going for the first down.

And who knows what happens after that.

Add in Limas Sweed's dropped touchdown pass and a Jeff Reed missed field goal and you just had the perfect storm for the Bengals.

Won't happen again this time.

Take Pittsburgh, 27-13


Derek said...

Totally agree conceptually. Only point of contention is the score. I think Big Ben has a huge day. Like 4TD's at least with another by the offense and defense. Blowout central. Bengals score will be irrelevant. And I am not a typical Steelers will win by 1,000 guy like some unrealistic fans.

marc said...

i don't think it is that clear cut.

the bengals rush defense is actually pretty good and will be a challenge for our o-line and RB's. there pass defense is only average, but not poor. but, they can get after the quarterback.

we need to mix it up offensively and take some shots downfield to open up the running lanes. if we don't, then i see us getting bogged down and scoring maybe 17 pts. i'll say it again, wallace could be the difference maker from a matchup perspective.

our defense matches up will with their offense, especially with henry out. it will be interesting to see if the bengals go straight to the short passing game or try to force benson down our throat. the steelers have the least amount of rush attempts against them in the league for a reason. other teams know the way to beat the steelers is through the air.

the x-factor here is the bengal's confidence. in year's past you could expect them to fold in the 4th quarter. not this year. if it's close after 3 qtrs the game could go either way, imo.

Anonymous said...

It's time to get the joystick going! If he can get us to start in good field position, the bungals don't have a chance.

Dale Lolley said...

Don't forget that eight of Cincinnati's sacks this season were by Odom, who's done for the year. They didn't touch Roethlisberger in the first three quarters of that game in Cincinnati.
Cincinnati's pass defense is in the bottom third of the league even with their sacks.

steelbeaver said...

I think the Bengals will see a completely different team than the one they saw in Cinci. Maybe it was a product of a "soft" camp, maybe Willie Parker not hitting the holes, maybe Troy being out, but this Steelers team is a far more cohesive unit on all sides of the ball. I think the Steelers play their most complete game of the year, 21 - 0 by the half, 35 - 7 final.

Anonymous said...

I do happen to be one of those typical Steelers will win by a 1000 type of guys and have predicted two of the last 4 super bowls correctly...BEFORE THE SEASON BEGAN!!! For this weekend's game I am picking Pittsburgh to win 1013 to 13.

CoreyGarry said...

I agree with you dale. So many times we shot ourselves in the foot and didn't capitalize on drives and settled for a field goal or having reed actually miss. and let's not even mention sweed, what a bum. but willie has always been able to run on the bengals ever since he's been a starter, and with our rejuvenated line with rashard of mice and mendenhall, it should produce big numbers. our passing game will kill the bengals, as always. too many weapons. and i think our defense is starting to return to dominant form. i'm looking forward to seeing clark lay some people out after he sat out. steelers all the way.

Patrick said...

Steelers 27-20. I think the Bengals will keep us on the edges of our seats.

Those Cincy corners are all the sudden ballhawks. Limiting turnovers will be important in this one. Anymore than 2 turnovers by the offense and I think Cincy takes the game.

But with that said, I don't see it happening and think the Steelers ultimately win. But in a close one.

I also think this is only Game 2 of 3 and we'll see them in the playoffs.

Anonymous said...

One of your easier picks? You're a homer. The Steelers should put Dale on their payroll. Nice call.