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

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Post-Oakland thoughts

Was that a dominant enough performance to end any thoughts of a meltdown ala. 2009?

It should have been.

The Steelers dominated the Raiders in every fashion – with the lone exception being when Rashard Mendenhall was running the ball.

Outside of that, the Steelers should have won this game by 50.

It was that dominant of a performance and the Raiders were that overwhelmed.

© Much of the discussion regarding this game will be on the officiating.

The Steelers were penalized for six personal fouls and the Raiders had a player, Richard Seymour, ejected for punching Ben Roethlisberger after he threw a touchdown pass to make it 21-3.

It will be interesting to see the fines that come down from this one and you can bet your last dollar that the Steelers will be watching closely.

The call against James Harrison for tackling Jason Campbell with his full body weight was iffy. Harrison let up at the end of the play.

But he'll probably draw another fine because of who he is.

The call against LaMarr Woodley for roughing Campbell was ridiculous. Woodley bumped Campbell, who went down, tripping Woodley.

The call against Ryan Clark for a helmet-to-helmet hit should have been a personal foul. It just shouldn't have been for helmet-to-helmet contact.

Clark put his helmet into the receiver's back and should have been penalized for hitting a defenseless receiver - if anything.

But the only way that was a helmet-to-helmet hit by Clark is if the receiver was wearing his helmet on his back.

© The officials flat out lost control of this game and obviously decided at halftime - after Seymour's ejection - that they were going to regain control.

Hence, we had 11 flags thrown in the third quarter.

© What in the world were Harrison, Woodley and Roethlisberger doing in the game late in the fourth quarter after all the other starters had been pulled with the Steelers holding a 28-3 lead?

Just asking.

© It was nice to see Troy Polamalu up in the box more often in this one instead of playing deep centerfield.

© It still amazes me every time Mike Wallace runs by defenders like they're standing still.


Patrick said...

hats off to the Steelers, Tomlin, BA (yes, BA), Lebeau, and especially the defense.

I thought Mendenhall ran ok and then really botched it with a few odd decisions and getting too cute.

I don't know why the starters were in, but I don't mind a little pouring it on after the Seymour incident.

Speaking of that, next time someone hits our QB like that, I hope someone comes off the bench and bloodies them. I know Kemo reacted but I wouldn't have minded a bench clearing brawl. Thats how ridiculous that act was.

Dale Lolley said...

No need to get more players ejected for leaving the bench area.

marc said...

i really want to see what goodell does with seymour. to throw a punch at a QB (who they protect so much) is unbelievable. if he's not suspended for 1 game, i will be shocked.

marc said...

sometimes you just need to go in and fight. if your franchise QB gets punched in the face, that's one of those times. there's guys on the team who should know it doesn't matter if they get ejected, trot out there and get it on.

Dale Lolley said...

That serves no purpose. This isn't the NHL.
The Steelers got their revenge. They beat the hell out of Oakland's quarterback.

Steve-O said...


Any idea what Ben said to Seymour that prompted the punch? I realize its irrelevant at this point but I'm curious.

Also, I noticed Antonio Brown and Emmanuel Sanders playing a more prominent role. Can we assume Randall El is relegated to spot duty? I for one am impressed with the explosiveness of both rookies and will take their playmaking ability over El's veteran experience any day.

Anonymous said...

Agreed Dale, why does Tomlin continue to play the starters late in games. He did the same I think it was against Tampa.

This is the perfect time for Redman to get more carries, gain experience along with keeping some thread on Shard's tires.

I like the looks of the young rookie WRs. I just wish Hines would pull them aside and teach them to refrain from all that celebrating - show class by handing the ball to the ref!

I don't get the roughing the passer calls at all - they weren't even late releases! So Harrison has to learn to hit someone and then adjust his weight....ridiculous!

Ike's pass interferenece was another terrible call!

Dale Lolley said...

The only starters left in were the offensive line - because they had nobody else - Roethlisberger, Woodley and Harrison.
Pretty much everyone else was subbed out.

There were some instances when they went empty backfield and ARE wasn't on the field. Three receivers - including Sanders - Miller and Moore.

Dale Lolley said...

And I don't know what Ben said. Nobody's talking at this point. Whatever he said obviously wasn't directed at Seymour, who just happened to be there.

Dan said...


What was up with that "stepped in front of the ball" penalty on Ike Taylor? Isn't that the CB's job? I've never heard that called before, and it was even more mystifying than the "pulling someone off of the pile" penalty on Essex.

Does the NFL specifically want to ruin Steelers' football, or are they trying to ruin football in general?

Anonymous said...

I love that brown and sanders are playing more

will be interesting next week with will allen healthy though. Will they deactivate El? or maybe battle since they get Allen, who plays special teams but not as good Battle, they could think about deactivating battle

sure will be interesting. But I hope sanders and brown continue to be active

skinley said...

Dale...any insight on the injuries from the gamr? Yikes!

Dale Lolley said...

None of the injuries are serious. Pouncey had a thigh bruise - got a knee in the thigh.
Kemoeatu was cramps.

Essex's penalty was the officials trying to stop the extracurricular stuff.

Taylor's was pretty much bs.

adamg said...

Dale, is it true NE and Oak both complained to the league about the field surface and now the NFL is going to look the issue?

Personally, the NFL would be doing the Steelers a favor if they insist the Rooney install artificial turf.

Anonymous said...

I'm certain that nobody with the Steelers wants to talk about it, but the field looks horrible (again).

Our next two games are on the road, but I'm not sure what other events are scheduled for Heinz Field (Panthers, WPIAL football, etc).

Dale - Any ideas on when and what is planned for Heinz?

adamg said...

Field will be re-sodded after the WPIAL championships on Saturday. That's the way it's been done for at least the past few years, too.

Anonymous said...

The condition of the field is an embarrassment, again. I fail to see how it's an advantage to the Steelers, by the way. If they could maintain the grass, fine. Since they can't...

Great job defense.

Thank you Mike Tomlin for benching Randle El and Essex.

Anonymous said...

"Thank you Mike Tomlin for benching Randle El and Essex."

yep. although I still like antwann as a veteran presence, especially after hines hangs it up. And essex is better as backup since he can play tackle and guard. Didn't do bad subbing at LT btw

joe said...

brown and sanders !!
painful game to watch with all the penalties, ridiculous
glad they didn't call kemo for a blatant hold on bens td run though.
a slant to 17, finally !
glad to see the team rebound well, still have more work to do though.
mendenhall looked to be favouring his shoulder all game, how bad is it dale ? or is nobody talking ?
the rag tag, ever changing o-line is just crazy.
i ilke very few announcers, but i do enjoy fouts

marc said...

don't overlook the Bills! they've been in many games this year and don't give up in the second half.

Dale Lolley said...

I just don't see the big deal about the field. If opposing teams are always complaining about it, then it's an advantage for the Steelers. The Raiders logged a complaint BEFORE Sunday's game.
But I've seen worse fields.
I wish they would do away with the sand based field and just go to pure nature grass. Somehow they do it in Green Bay.

And that wasn't a slant to Wallace. It was a pure drag route. Those were open all game long against Oakland's press man. Defenders got lost in the wash.

joe said...

ok, drag route, they sent him across the middle and it worked ! want to see more of that
i would rather see football on a dirt field than in a dome any day, can't stand domes.
glad to see tomlin make a few adjustments also.

Anonymous said...

If it would have been j. Harrison punching Tom Brady it would have been the end of the world. Top story on espn etc. Harrison would have been fined 100k+ and suspended for at least two games. I can't wait to see if Seymour gets the same

marc said...

football "analysts" better not say seymour doesn't have the same history as harrison. seymour was ejected from a previous game against the browns for hitting a player after the play was dead.

adamg said...

I don't really understand how the poor field conditions are deemed acceptable when players are getting millions of dollars to perform. It is like having the Cirque du Soleil do their act on the local playground jungle gym.

Patrick said...

its too early for all of this, but I'm bored today.

Looking ahead, I think its a safe bet that the Playoffs will look like this:

-NE or NYJ with the division winner the first seed and the second team as the 5th seed

-Indy as the 3rd seed

-Balt/Pitt with the division winner being the 2nd seed and the other the 6th seed

-and someone from the West (history says SD) being the 4th.

Of course things could change dramatically and I'm speculating, but even with some changes, the AFC is top heavy and unless the Steelers win the division they are going to be hard pressed to be anything but the 6th seed.

Anonymous said...

I hope it's the chiefs that make the playoffs