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Friday, October 10, 2014

Who I like, Cleveland Part II

I think the Steelers learned a valuable lesson last week in Jacksonville last week, that being they need to get the ball into the hands of their best playmakers if they want to put up big points.

Having Ben Roethlisberger complete passes to 11 different receivers is nice, but would you rather have the ball in the hands of Michael Palmer or Antonio Brown?

And therein was part of the problem for the Steelers last week in Jacksonville.

Entering the fourth quarter, Brown had four receptions. Running back Le'Veon Bell had touched the ball 13 times - 10 rushes and three receptions.

That pair is among the top five in the NFL in total yards per game. And yet they had combined for 16 touches.

Running back LeGarrette Blount had one fewer reception than Brown. And he and Dri Archer had combined for 12 touches, one fewer than Bell.

You have to get the ball into the hands of your best playmakers. But against the Jaguars, it seemed the Steelers got too cute. They figured Jacksonville's defense was so bad, they could get everyone involved and still put up points.

Instead, they faltered in the red zone - completely abandoning Bell - and had to throw a pass to Brown at the end of the game to get him his fifth reception.

Looking ahead at Cleveland this week, the Steelers will be reminded of what they did that worked well against the Browns in the opener.

Bell and Brown combined for over 200 yards of total offense in the first half as the Steelers took a 27-3 lead.

In the second half, they had just over 60 yards - all by Bell - and scrambled to score three points.

The Steelers will get the ball to their stars in this one.

Pittsburgh opened as a 2-point underdog and it has moved to 1 1/2 points. I expect it to be at 1 or even by game time.

Yes, the Browns pulled off a comeback from a 25-point deficit last week. But it was in Tennessee against a backup quarterback.

They won't face a backup this week. In fact, they will face a quarterback who has beaten them 18 times in 19 games.

I'll take the Steelers in this one, 27-24


Anonymous said...

This is the best Browns team we've seen in a while. That offensive line is playing better than any right now and that gives them an explosive offense that our defense just can't handle. Realistically speaking the browns will win this game.

Anonymous said...

Real simple, if the team that showed up the last two weeks comes to play, the Steelers will get their butts handed to them. If the team that went to Carolina shows up, the Browns will be back in the cellar. My thoughts are that it comes down to who wants it more. This is Tomlin’s chance to show everyone he’s the great motivator but I don’t see the Steelers playing inspired football recently, so I’ll go Browns 24 Steelers 13.

Anonymous said...

This is the best browns team Ben has ever faced, but I'm sure he'll be able to sit nicely at 19 out of 20. That score sounds about right. No sitting back and relax for us fans. And I'm sure it'll be more competitive that the first game, which was a tale of two halves for both teams. Should be a fun sunday!

Steve-O said...

Careful Dale, you're beginning to sound like the Haley haters who accuse him of continually outsmarting himself.... Not that I mind 😄

Dale Lolley said...

Not just him. The quarterback is calling a lot of those plays as well, remember?

It's funny. When the offense works, Roethlisberger gets the credit. When it doesn't, Haley stinks. Can't have it both ways.

Mike said...

A significant percentage of our fans blow. Reminds me of the Cowher days when rumors swirled about him and the secretary and the disparaging talk about Stewart's personal life. I love the team, but all too often the jagoff in the Harrison jersey next to me is just a depressed, bitter, underemployed drip that uses the Steelers as a foil for the rest of his disappointed life. The Internet makes it worse, no doubt.

Steelers 27-20.

Anonymous Brian said...

A lot of the Arians hate was misdirected Ben criticism. It was No. 7's offense as much as the Bruce's. (I agreed with the decision to get rid of Arians.) Same with Haley.

Browns - 23 Steelers - 16

adamg said...

According to a local newspaper columnist turned blog owner/operator, BR doesn't get to call plays in the no huddle.

I appreciate BR helping get the Steelers a couple more Lombardi's in the trophy case, but to me, he's about as phony as 3 dollar bill. His attempts to undermine Haley are just as transparent.

His act must getting old with the Rooneys.

That said, I think the Steelers will come out ready to play and will win this game.