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

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Cincinnati Game Day thread

Heath Miller is down for the Steelers, no surprise there.

Keenan Lewis is down after his gaffe last week, running out of bounds on a punt coverage. Crezdon Butler is active.

Johnathan Joseph is down for Cincinnati.

The rains have let up, but it's still coming down lightly. There's also a steady wind that seemed to be knocking down deep passes in warmups.

The freshly re-sodded field looks OK. We'll see how it holds up once the water soaks all the way in.


Patrick said...

that spike before the half and the ensuing plays were pathetic. Up until that I thought that was the best 2:00 time management they had all season. Way to blow it.

Anonymous said...

Why is the rest of the league allowed to clobber our QB and our D gets fined for not playing two hand touch.

marc said...

great question. i'm here in cleveland and switching back and forth between games. there was a roughing the QB call against the bills that was less obvious than the late hit on #7.

the options here are simple:
1. the refs stink. that's always up for debate.
2. the refs don't understand what the league wants.
3. the league has told the refs who to favor and not favor.

pure statistical probablities would say that the steelers should randomly benefit from the same calls other teams have. however, the randomness has not occured suggesting that it is not random at all.

marc said...

all hail suisham btw. reed who?

Anonymous said...

Dale, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE find out why the wasted that down with the spike? They did the same thing vs. Baltimore in '08 (right before Santonio's controversial game winner) when it was COMPLETELY UNECESSARY? I just do not understand.

Why is the combination of Ben / Arians / Tomlin not capable of basic clock management at the end of a half? They don't have to be masters, to never make mistakes, but to consistently...geez...

Great game, defense!

We might have the worst offense in the league.


Anonymous said...

The coaching staff is allowed to call timeouts, it is inexcusable that they allow him to spike it there. On the flip side, he was trying to throw an INT in that endzone, one more play he might have succeeded, so instead of costing them 4 it might have saved them 3!

Some of the hits Roethlisberger has taken the last few weeks are ridiculous, particularly when you consider the flags thrown on Harrison for his hits on Campbell and Fitzpatrick. Something needs to be done about this ASAP, I imagine Shaun Rogers would love nothing more than to end his season by ending Ben's in a few weeks.

Anonymous said...

Although I do wonder if they like to keep a timeout in pocket there, in the event they take a sack and need it to keep the field goal try? Given the o-line's propensity to give them up, and the quarterback's propensity to take them, I guess it is not a terrible idea.

Vaflyer said...

There was nothing wrong with the clock management to end the half. Play execution...yes, but the clock they managed fine.

Dale, any word on Troy? I know he played through whatever made him limp, but him getting banged up has me worried because look what he does when he is on the field.

marc said...

what is amazing about these non-calls on hits to #7 is the ridiculous calls in the favor of other QB's in the league.

the current strategy the steeler's are using to address this problem is clearly not working. every week there are ridiculous calls not made and #7 will be lucky if he makes it thru the season. the refs are not making the appropriate calls.

the head coach must speak out. he must make it an issue the nfl has to deal with. this "we'll deal with it behind the scenes" is clearly not working.

kyle said...

yes, and whining about it in press conferences and getting fined will definitely make things happen. you can't "pressure" or "embarrass" the league into calling games consistently, particularly when they're reactionary and change points of emphasis mid-season. you can hope for two things: that the league will right itself or the steelers will play with a chip on their shoulders.

Dale Lolley said...

I didn't think the spike was a good idea at the time either, but it allowed them the option of running the ball on second down with a timeout remaining. That caused the Bengals to bite on the play-action, leaving Spaeth open in the end zone. The Bengals made a nice play on the ball at the line of scrimmage to ruin it.

And you can't blame Arians for the spike. That's Roethlisberger all the way. That's his call during the 2-minute. He's running the show.

The Eagles are complaining about the same kind of things with Michael Vick. Pocket passers who don't scramble out of trouble get more calls. Guys who are dangerous on the move, don't.

marc said...

yes you can. refs are human just like the rest of us. if they feel like they're being scrutinized by the league, then they'll start making the calls.

happens all the time in basketball and baseball. ever heard of working the refs? there are all-time great coaches who are famous for it.

kyle said...

yeah, you don't work the refs in the post-game press conference. after the ben hit Tomlin called for the ref to come over. doing what half the fans seem to want would accomplish nothing. i feel safe in assuming that the organization has made and continues to make their feelings known, just because it's not publicly and without class doesn't mean it's not happening.

Anonymous said...

I blame Arians and Tomlin as well as Ben because it's at least the third time it's happened. He needs to be coached up on this fundamental. (In the Super Bowl, with forty-nine seconds left, after Santonio's catch-and-run to set up the game winner, Ben was running down the field signaling for a spike. With 49 seconds left. First-and-goal at the six. Fortunately Tomlin called time out.) Regardless, you can still keep the timeout in your pocket yesterday. They spiked it with 34 (about that?) seconds left. Run a play.

marc said...

you ever heard a phil jackson press conference after a playoff game then watch how the next game is called?

you remember how bill parcells tore the refs apart in a post game press conference years ago when he coached the giants?

just because a coach comes out and says, "hey, these calls are being missed" is not classless. it's a statement of fact.

and, another statement of fact, is that whatever the steelers are doing to address the problem is not working. no one can argue that.

kyle said...

Things are very different in basketball. The nfl was far less litigious years ago. You're assuming it's a problem the steelers can fix. It's not.

marc said...

so let's see. the QB has been punched in the face, his nose broken, knee twisted, several helmet-to-helmet hits and many other late hits, yet it's not worth it for the head coach to say something that might be considered controversial?

the steelers have more money invested in #7 than any other player and the manner they are going about protecting him is ridiculous. the guy will be lucky to play 2 more seasons if this keeps up.

but no, let's just sit back and watch it happen. that makes a lot of sense.

kyle said...

You're suggesting that Tomlin saying something about it would change any of those things. Vick and Reid and the rest of their team have said plenty about the lack of calls regarding him. Vick got two helmet shots in the same play last night with no flag. Complaining about it in public does nothing. Absolutely nothing. Maybe it would make you feel better to see Tomlin pissed off about it but it wouldn't protect Ben any.

marc said...

there's only one way to find out.