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Sunday, August 25, 2013

Steelers lose game, Jones to injury

Steelers rookie linebacker Jarvis Jones, the team's top draft pick, was taken to a Pittsburgh hospital for evaluation following Saturday night's 26-20 overtime loss to Kansas City in the team's third preseason game.

Jones, who had been rotating with Jason Worilds at right outside linebacker, suffered the injury in the fourth quarter of the game after apparently landing on the ball while being tackled following an interception. The interception was nullified by a pass interference penalty on Josh Victorian.

There is no further word on his status, but he seemed to be in some discomfort while being wheeled through the stadium tunnel.

@ The first-team offense showed some spark in the first half, putting together some decent drives and taking advantage of a failed fourth down attempt by Kansas City deep in its own territory.

The Steelers did some nice things on a 70-yard drive to open the game, most notably, giving Ben Roethlisberger just enough protection to complete a 49-yard bomb to Antonio Brown. But Roethlisberger then missed an open Brown on third down and the Steelers settled for a field goal.

Roethlisberger then made one of his vintage Big Ben plays on the team's second possession and found Jonathan Dwyer open in the flat for a 13-yard TD pass.

On the next two drives, the team again just missed by thismuch on adding to its total. An iffy chop-block call on Dwyer - OK, it was ridiculous - killed the first drive and nullified a 25-yard pass to Brown that would have put the ball at the Kansas City 17.

On the next possession, Emmanuel Sanders bobbled the ball as he hit the ground in the end zone, killing what would have been a 34-yard touchdown pass. Shaun Suisham then had a 52-yard field goal attempt blocked.

@ The defense, like the offense, definitely had its moments in the first half. And Troy Polamalu looked like the Troy Polamalu of old, flying around the field and disrupting things.

He killed Kansas City's opening drive with a typical Polamalu deke, jumping up to the line of scrimmage late in the playclock and then dropping out to cover a crossing pattern.

That caused enough confusion for Alex Smith that he was sacked by Ziggy Hood to end the drive.

On the next possession, Polamalu was instrumental in stopping Kansas City twice on third and fourth-and-1 plays.

He later had a silly personal foul penalty for roughing Smith, but even on that play, he showed the old Polamalu burst to close on Smith just after he released the ball.

@ I thought the offensive line did a pretty decent job protecting the quarterback when it was in there. Yes, the Chiefs got a couple of sacks and Tamba Hali was disruptive at times, but Kansas City had a couple of well-timed blitzes to get to the quarterback and Hali isn't an All-Pro player for nothing.

The line did not, however, created a lot of running lanes. It still hasn't played a complete game. When it run blocks well, the pass blocking has been suspect. And vice versa.

@ I did like the addition of Kelvin Beachum as a tight end. And just to keep things interesting, the Steelers threw out of that formation about as much as they ran from it.

In fact, Roethlisberger's 49-yard bomb to Brown came with Beachum on the field.


Steve-O said...

Timmons looked spectacular as always. I remember when the Steelers drafted him ahead of Woodley, I thought they might have got it backwards but in the long run Timmons has been the more consistent star.

On Special teams and late in the game Ventrone has made his presence known. I've said it before, I like the kid and I'm rooting for him.

And finally, I like the way Felix Jones ran, especially considering he just got picked up. He tends to find the whole and get vertical much better than Dwyer who reminds me of Mendenhall when he hesitates.

adamg said...

Triplett's crew was in mid-season form making terrible calls. I hope someday the NFL decides what is and isn't a catch. If a wr can catch a ball, juggle it, but retain possession all the way to the ground like Sanders did, it's a catch in the field. He clearly had the ball and both feet down as he was going out of bounds, juggled the ball but never let it hit the ground and came up with it. The late hit call on Allen, who played very well, was bad, too.

Surely hope Jarvis Jones is alright. The kid is a playmaker and the loose balls seem to find him when he's on defense.

kyle said...

The chop block call on Dwyer was bad. The call on Allen was bad. The call on Sanders catch was good. Even in the field of play you have to maintain possession to the ground. He didn't. He had the ball, went to the ground, bobbled it, and by the time he regained possession he was out of bounds. It was a good play by Flowers. And it was the right call by the crew.

adamg said...

Sanders' catch would be a catch in the field of play. The receiver can bobble the ball as long as it never hits the ground and he comes up with the it.

Imho, it is ridiculous to have a different rule for out of bounds esp when the receiver clearly has possession of the ball with both feet down in bounds. I can see if a receiver is bobbling a ball on his way out and never has full possession, but that is not what I saw with the Sanders catch.

kyle said...

Of course it would have been a catch in the middle of the field, same way any catch out of bounds would be. The issue is you have to maintain possession to the ground if you haven't already established possession and crossed the goalline. He caught the ball as he was falling into the endzone and then when he hit the ground Flowers stripped it. Sanders didn't get it back under control until he was out of bounds. That's not a catch.

Dale Lolley said...

Kyle is correct. He did not regain control until he was out of bounds