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Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Post, post-Super Bowl post

Some people have taken issue with my post-game post where I wrote that Aaron Rodgers only slightly outplayed Ben Roethlisberger. I stand by that statement.

I'd say that Roethlisberger played a C to C-plus game in the Super Bowl. It wasn't great, but he accounted for nearly 300 yards of offense and two touchdowns.

Again, I give him a pass on the first interception because his arm was hit as he threw. He made the bad throw over the middle, forcing the ball to Wallace that was intercepted, but I thought his audibles were good for the most part and they caught the Packers a couple of times when he checked into some runs.

I'd say Rodgers had a B-plus game. It was far from the perfect game that some would have you believe. Yes, he had some drops, but drops happen because the receivers here footsteps or lose concentration.

He produced one first down in the third quarter and could have thrown a couple of picks as well. It was not a complete game.

At the end of the day, Roethlisberger and the Steelers offense produced 25 points. Rodgers and the Packers offense had 24.

© I do think that Bruce Arians will be back as the Steelers' offensive coordinator, but I also think that Randy Fichtner is the OC in waiting, just as Keith Butler is the DC in waiting.

Some have been quick to criticize the Steelers for not running the ball more in the Super Bowl, but circumstances dictated that they all but abandon the running game in the fourth quarter.

© Emmanuel Sanders suffered a broken foot on the turf at Dallas – he had pins inserted – and there was plenty of slipping and sliding around on that field.

That's why I'm not a big fan of field turf.

© The Steelers should seriously consider moving Maurkice Pouncey to left guard.

Doug Legursky was solid at center in the Super Bowl. Wouldn't Pouncey look a lot better coming around the corner on the counter as opposed to Chris Kemoeatu?

Max Starks and Willie Colon are expected to have full recoveries and you could have a line from left to right of Starks, Pouncey, Legursky, Kemoeatu/Foster, Colon/Adams.

That's assuming Flozell Adams doesn't retire.

He played well enough this season that they could consider moving Colon inside to guard as well.

Colon is a free agent - assuming we have a free agent period – but should re-sign pretty cheaply.

© Defensive back is the team's biggest need in this offseason.

Ike Taylor is a solid No. 2 corner/low-end No. 1.

But he's also a free agent - assuming we have a free agent period.

They need some additional top-end talent in the defensive secondary considering nobody is willing to attempt to run against them.

I wouldn't be opposed to making free safety a high draft priority.

© Defensive backs Ray Horton will interview for the Arizona Cardinals' defensive coordinator position. The Cardinals also wanted to talk to linebackers coach Keith Butler, but were denied permission.


marc said...

dale, your mind is whacked out.

there were six dropped passes in that game. so let's be nice and say 3 were easy catches and 1 was absolutely no doubt a TD. let's also be nice and only give them 10 yards a catch. that would put rodger's stat line at:

27comp. - 39att. - 334 yards and 4 TDs.

and you think that is only slightly better than #7?

i would also like to know how many dropped passes there were on 3rd down in the 3rd quarter.

adamg said...

Dale, I think with all the guys who normally wouldn't get a lot of playing time, but did due to injuries, the OL will be much more solid and deep next year. It will be interesting to see what happens with Colon. The Steelers did not open negotiations with him this past season on a new contract, but opted for just the 1 year tender. I suspect the Steelers weren't too happy with Colon's part in the GA incident and might want to seperate him and BR for good. I think the Steelers have more options at RT than Colon now, including Flozell Adams and the Scotts.
They won't move Pouncey from center, but they might just try and grab his twin to play G.

I don't think turf or grass makes much difference to injuries. Troy's gotten significant injuries the past several years at Heinz after all.

Dale Lolley said...

I only look at what did happen, not what could have. You saying Roethlisberger didn't have some passes dropped that could have been caught as well?

Receivers drop passes every game.

ch3 said...

If the Steelers would draft Mike Pouncey, do you think they would consider moving Kemo back to RG? I remember when Kemo started out he was Simmons backup at RG and I believe had a few starts there. I always thought he was a better RG. He is bigger and slower, more mauling, like a RG. He is not that fleet of foot like our LG usually are (Faneca). I would think a more athletic LG like Mike Pouncey would be better at LG than RG. It more than likely will not happen, since the Steelers normally don't change a guy's position.
I do agree with you about FS. It is a pretty weak class, but I could see them getting a FS in the 3-4 range.
They really do need to get a CB or two high in this draft. With the way the league is changing, they need better corners. Refs don't call holding, and WRs can do just about what they want anymore. If the Steelers run defense slips some (from like 1st to 4th) but their pass D can improve, I would take that. It's about rushing the passer and defending the pass now, not stopping the run like it used to be.
There are more and more QBs who can pick apart the Steelers (Rodgers, Brady, Brees). They need better DBs.

B D Humbert said...


I could not agree with you more - Ben did not have the awful game that some would like to believe he did - if Chris K makes the block and his arm does not get hit Wallace is off to the races and Steelers are up 7-0.

Giving Ben credit for the TD that might have been is the same as counting drops as completions for Rodgers...

Ben showed once more his competitive spirit - did not give up - never said the game was over. Some day Steeler fans will come to realize how special that is in a QB.

Anonymous said...

Dale --

Any word on the disarray with on the final offensive drive? Looked like first training camp practice of the 2-min offense. Thanks.

Ben missed on some huge throws as well as the picks. He made plays to keep us in it -- he's a top 5 QB, of course -- but he was a little off (maybe the dinged-up foot, knee, shoulder?) his game.

marc said...

fact is, rodgers was almost spot on with his throws the whole game and the ONLY reason the game wasn't a blowout was because of the dropped passes.

and i find your logic rather flawed, dale. if a QB goes 0 for 5 in the redzone with 5 dropped passes in the endzone you would say that QB played poorly, based on your logic.

whereas, most other people would say that QB did a great job of getting the ball where it is supposed to be and the receiver blew it.

dagwick said...

Agree that BR did not have really bad game, but he was off, and it seemed that most of his off throws were high. A short time ago another QB mentioned that he does not wear gloves due to the ball sticking more and the short/touch passes came out low for him. Ben didn't wear gloves for the 1st time I can remember this season, could that have led to the ball coming out slightly quicker - leading to some of the high/long throws?

Anonymous said...

Dale - my issue with abandoning teh running game occured in the 3rd quarter. After the impressive running drive to pull the score to 21-17 and clearly having the Packers on their heels We stop the Packers and get the ball back. We work our way to the GB-29 with a combination of runs and passes. Then what do we do - incomplete pass, pass for -3 yards, sack, and force ourselves to right or wrong try a 52 yard FG

Anonymous said...

Dale, while I feel like Ben did OK I do not give him a pass for that first pick; his arm may have been bumped but if you watch the play Ben hesitated and pulled back on his first through. He definitely did not show the same accuracy as Rodgers with a lot of his passes going high. I agree with you that the turf was a big issue. The Woodson injury was pretty much entirely because of the field surface. Glad the Steelers play on grass.

joe said...

legursky as next years center and pouncey at guard is a very interesting idea that i'm sure many of us were thinking after watching legs the last two games.

ben wasn't great, but the loss isn't near all on him
it isn't all on mendy either
it isn't all on the coaches
it isn't all on the defense making no big play

not a great game by many, but they didn't quit. we lost, it's over. can't believe i am reading so much about mendy or ben costing us the game, rubbish.
we got to watch our team in the super bowl even if it was a loss. life goes on

Anonymous said...

Colon at guard. I LOVE those words. Been hoping for it since his rookie season. Let flozell hold down RT one more year, he deserves it, while they groom a young OT to take over

Dale Lolley said...

The interception was a double move. Ben pump faked to get the corner to bite. It worked. Wallace was going past the corner. He couldn't step into the throw properly because Kemoeatu was in that space. And then Green hit is arm, cause the pass to go short.

As for the play-calling before the field goal, they have to mix things up. Yes, they were running the ball down Green Bay's throat. But the first-down incompletion put them in second and 10. If they run the ball there and get stopped for a 3-yard loss or little to no gain, everyone is complaining that they were too predictable.

People seem to be forgetting the fact that Green Bay's defense is pretty good too. The Steelers put up 25 points on the second-stingiest defense in the league.

Anonymous said...

Joe Buck was pretty impressed by Ben's TD throw to Wallace in the 3rd quarter. While Ben had an off game, he made some spectacular plays too.

I just wish Arians wouldn't telegraph so many of the plays. I was astounded how many of the GB defensive players commented that they knew exactly what play was coming, based on personnel and formation.

Anonymous said...

Dale, the packers were missing their best DB. Ben missed wide open game changing throws on two occasions. He also failed to execute the 2 minute offense. He had 2 picks while Rogers had none.
Ben also had the 10 th worst post season qb rating out of the12 post season qbs and had the most ints of any 2010 post season qb while not having nearly as many attempts.

He had a poor showing by my standards which are considering him an elite qb.

Matt said...

Question: Why would you move Pouncey to guard and not move Legursky to guard?

Pouncey is a legit Pro bowl center, Legursky could play guard no?

adamg said...

IIRC, they change balls every down in the SB. I've read complaints that leaves the balls always slick and never a chance to get broken in. Maybe that had something to do with BR's throws being high, too.

Dale Lolley said...

Legursky is too small to hold up at guard over the long haul. But at center, that's not as big a problem. They found that out this season, which is why Legursky was pulled after four starts at guard.

And anybody who thinks Woodson was/is Green Bay's best corner wasn't really paying attention this season.
Woodson has clearly lost a step, which is why the Packers played him a lot at safety this season. He's still very good against the run and his headiness helps cover up the declining speed, but he's not their best corner.

Matt said...

Along the same thought lines:
Do you think Pouncey would be a Pro Bowl Guard?

Anonymous said...

Dale, my point is the packers were missing a key part of there secondary for nearly the entire game. That should be a big advantage for the steelers experienced qb. Nonetheless, Ben was out performed by Rogers. Further Ben's post season performance as a whole was average to poor. Again, I view him as an elite experienced qb and he did not perform as such.

HACK said...

For Marc

By your logic if a QB goes 0-30 but hit every WR in the hands...he had a great game?

The Packers did what they had to do....saying it would have been a blowout if not for the dropped passes is correct.....but so is the Steelers would have blown them out if they did not have 3 turnovers turn into 21 points.

They spotted the Pack 21..and lost by 6.

ibygeorge said...

Dale, spot on about BB, and Legursky. Mendy would have a field day running those holes on the right side.
Arians called a pretty descent game the defense just could not hold GB to field goals. It looks like #43 had some bad instincts on a couple plays. I thought Gay didn't have his arms up to block that TD pass his way.

Dale Lolley said...

Yes, I do believe Pouncey could be a Pro Bowl player at guard. A Pro Bowl player is a Pro Bowl player.

marc said...

anyone that watched that game and thinks rodgers only slightly outperformed #7 is blinded by the love for their team.

Robbie said...

We can argue about the degree to which Ben was outplayed, but we can all agree he WAS outplayed.

It's tough to win when you don't have the best QB on the field. I expected more from Ben. Fair or not, his reputation as an elite, big-game stud QB has taken a large hit.

Dan said...

I think you keep Pouncey at C and maybe try to trade Legursky to a team that needs a C. Maybe the Redskins would trade a 2nd rounder for him- a pretty good return for an UDFA.

I thought Legursky played a good game overall, but he blew his block on the Mendenhall fumble and his guy was one of the ones to strip Mendenhall.

Dan said...

It's tough to win when you don't have the best QB on the field. I expected more from Ben. Fair or not, his reputation as an elite, big-game stud QB has taken a large hit.


Exactly, and it's yet another reason why this loss is so bitter.

Dale Lolley said...

You don't know me very well, Marc. Have no love for the team. I just call em like I see em.

Steve-O said...

Dale I like your ideas for the O-Line. Legursky at Center frees Pouncey for the Guard position and eliminates another need in the draft. With that in mind I think we need to focus on DB's and D-Linemen in this years draft. If we are even remotely as successful as last year's draft we're well on our way to competing for another AFC North title.

One quick question, do you think the Steelers would be in the market for Nnamdi Asomugha? I know they're not big on chasing big money free agents but this guy is a difference maker.

Dale Lolley said...

That would be a major, major free agent signing. We're likely talking $12 to $15 mill per season. That's not going to happen.

rocket9 said...

I'm in the camp that says Rodgers should have had two more easy TD's with his precision throws that the WR's dropped like a hot potato. I think some of you need to rewatch the game closely. Ben played OK but not up to elite level. He missed a few throws and even his TD to Hines was to the wrong shoulder and Ward made an incredible contortion-type effort to pull it in. He was high and off and the 2 minute drill was hilariously inept. They also blew timeouts early and were in serious danger of using up all the clock on numerous plays and being called for DOG. Ben is a great player but he wasn't great in this one. Mediocre by his standards in fact.

Green Bay isn't a great team either. It was a pretty crummy SB..I know a lot of real football fans here in Ottawa, and they said it was boring to watch. Too many mistakes ..and quarter like the third where GB couldn't do anything combined with Pitt's inabiltiy to avoid turnovers or penalties on ST's made for a less than edifying spectacle.

Alexander said...

Just wanted to say I really liked the post. You have really put a lot of time into your posts and it is just wonderfull! online free play

Greg Mercer said...

if Fichtner is the OC in waiting, what is he waiting for and for how long? it's not like Arians is 73.

Matt said...

I agree that a pro bowl player is a pro bowl player. However I am Just having trouble justifying your logic. Justin hartwig in my opinion was a better center than Legursky (so far) and we got rid of him to move Pouncey to Center.

Anonymous said...

Hartwig was old and done

MAtt- u r an idiot so stfu and leave

marc said...

maybe you should watch the game again dale.

Justin Hartwig said...

I am not Washed up!! A-Hole

I still have at least 3 years left in me....

The guys down at Walmart have been pulling for me to get back in the NFL.....

Come Back player of the year Baby!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Moving Pouncey is a terrible idea. After several years of filth-flime-flith at center the Steelers have secured an all-pro stalwart, and the first instinct is to move him to an unfamiliar position. It makes no sense. If you need a guard, draft a guard. Leave the keystone alone, and sit back and admire his talented play for the next decade.

Anonymous said...

start Nagursky at tackle imo

and bring back Mahan not Hartwig

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said: I was astounded how many of the GB defensive players commented that they knew exactly what play was coming, based on personnel and formation.

And Ben still had a chance to win the game at the end.

Matt said: Justin hartwig in my opinion was a better center than Legursky (so far) and we got rid of him to move Pouncey to Center.

Legursky was going to be the starting center with Pouncey at guard, but Pouncey blew them away in camp.


Teddy Ball Game said...

I'm sorry but I cannot agree...

You don't take an All-Pro player and move him, because someone else was decent as a temporary replacement.

That would be like moving Troy Polamalu because Ryan Mundy was decent when Polamalu was out for four games late in the season.


And by the way... Hit on the arm or not... Roethlisberger should have never thrown the ball to Wallace on that first interception. Wallace was not open, and Ben's pump fake drew the safety over to double cover. Best case scenario, the ball would've fallen incomplete...