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fordfixer
09-16-2009, 01:15 AM
Tomlin weighs in on running game
September 15th, 2009
http://blog.triblive.com/view-from-the- ... ning-game/ (http://blog.triblive.com/view-from-the-press-box/2009/09/15/tomlin-weighs-in-on-running-game/)

Mistakes that are typical in a first game: The difficulty of running against a 4-3 defensive front. Willie Parker needing to knock the rust off after getting limited work during the preseason.

To the theories that have abounded as to why the Steelers’ running game sputtered and belched in a 13-10 win over the Tennessee Titans last Thursday add this one: it is generally more difficult to run the ball at the beginning of the season.

“I believe, particularly in September football, people make a commitment to stopping the run,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said. “It’s easier to make a commitment in September when everyone feels good and you’ve got all the horses in the stable. I think over the course of the long haul you see who’s good at it, week in and week out. It’s usually tough sledding early in the football season.”

There is probably some merit to what Tomlin said today at his weekly news conference given that he likes excuses about as much as he does pre-snap penalties.

And it is certainly too early to write off the Steelers’ running game (read: Willie Parker and an offensive line that has not exactly quieted criticism of it).

Not to say there aren’t troubling signs.

Parker has not looked like the same back since he broke his leg in the Steelers’ penultimate game of the 2007 season, and the offensive line looked considerably better pass blocking against the Titans than imposing their will against them in the running game.

After the game, several offensive linemen talked about how going against a 4-3 front makes their job even tougher since they practice regularly against the 3-4 defense that the Steelers play.

“It’s a factor,” Tomlin said. “I’m not going to allow it to be an excuse.”

The Steelers get another crack at 4-3 defense this week when they play the Bears, and there will be no excuses if they again are unable to mount any kind of a running game.

No first-game sloppiness, no Parker needing a little more game action and no lack of familiarity with a 4-3 defense just because they don’t practice against one on a daily basis.

“We understand what we face schematically from these guys this week and how they play,” Tomlin said of the Bears. “At the same time understanding and being able to function against them are two different things. We’ve got to put ourselves in a position to execute.”

SanAntonioSteelerFan
09-16-2009, 07:41 AM
Tomlin weighs in on running game
September 15th, 2009
http://blog.triblive.com/view-from-the- ... ning-game/ (http://blog.triblive.com/view-from-the-press-box/2009/09/15/tomlin-weighs-in-on-running-game/)

Mistakes that are typical in a first game: The difficulty of running against a 4-3 defensive front. Willie Parker needing to knock the rust off after getting limited work during the preseason.

To the theories that have abounded as to why the Steelers’ running game sputtered and belched in a 13-10 win over the Tennessee Titans last Thursday add this one: it is generally more difficult to run the ball at the beginning of the season.

“I believe, particularly in September football, people make a commitment to stopping the run,” Steelers coach Mike Tomlin said. “It’s easier to make a commitment in September when everyone feels good and you’ve got all the horses in the stable. I think over the course of the long haul you see who’s good at it, week in and week out. It’s usually tough sledding early in the football season.”

There is probably some merit to what Tomlin said today at his weekly news conference given that he likes excuses about as much as he does pre-snap penalties.

And it is certainly too early to write off the Steelers’ running game (read: Willie Parker and an offensive line that has not exactly quieted criticism of it).

Not to say there aren’t troubling signs.

Parker has not looked like the same back since he broke his leg in the Steelers’ penultimate game of the 2007 season, and the offensive line looked considerably better pass blocking against the Titans than imposing their will against them in the running game.

After the game, several offensive linemen talked about how going against a 4-3 front makes their job even tougher since they practice regularly against the 3-4 defense that the Steelers play.

“It’s a factor,” Tomlin said. “I’m not going to allow it to be an excuse.”

The Steelers get another crack at 4-3 defense this week when they play the Bears, and there will be no excuses if they again are unable to mount any kind of a running game.

No first-game sloppiness, no Parker needing a little more game action and no lack of familiarity with a 4-3 defense just because they don’t practice against one on a daily basis.

“We understand what we face schematically from these guys this week and how they play,” Tomlin said of the Bears. “At the same time understanding and being able to function against them are two different things. We’ve got to put ourselves in a position to execute.”

I'm very confused about that part. I thought the first teams practiced against the, uhmm, practice squad, and the practice squad was set up to mimic the schemes of the upcoming week's opponents?

So if they were going up against a 4-3 in the Titans, why didn't the first team offense practice against a 4-3 the week before? :?

Starlifter
09-16-2009, 08:05 AM
there are lots of reasons and even more excuses why the run game isn't where it needs to be. All I know is we're starting our third season where the O-line is a known issue. Remember how bad it was with Mahan? This isn't a dig at Hartwig - he's a big improvement (though he had a bad game last week). I'm just getting tired of week in week out hearing reasons why the job didn't get done - when perhaps the only reason that counts is we have average players at best in those positions.

papillon
09-16-2009, 08:50 AM
there are lots of reasons and even more excuses why the run game isn't where it needs to be. All I know is we're starting our third season where the O-line is a known issue. Remember how bad it was with Mahan? This isn't a dig at Hartwig - he's a big improvement (though he had a bad game last week). I'm just getting tired of week in week out hearing reasons why the job didn't get done - when perhaps the only reason that counts is we have average players at best in those positions.

And, no coach is going to admit his players aren't that good in a press conference and, particularly, a team that is expected to be contending for the Super Bowl. So, in lieu of the truth you get coach speak. :tt2

Pappy

fezziwig
09-16-2009, 09:01 AM
What I question is, are other teams finding the same problems as us ? Do other teams not run into the conflict of injuries, new players, old players, etc and have our troubles ? I forget what game it was I was watching this weeekend but the annoucer was giving praise for the rookie offensive line players so, it's not impossible to learn or gel quickly. .

Anyway, listening to Madden on the radio yesterday and some of the call ins, he and or they, are saying Mendenhall is a bust. Madden said it is too early to officially call him a bust but the truth wil come out that, he is a bust . He also said he'll be off or should be cut from this team by next season.

Do you guys think Mendenhall is a bust ? Madden asked one of the callers if Mendenhall has shown any glimps or made any positive steps on why he was a number one pick and neither could come up with one.

i think Mendenhall needs to touch the ball more, needs to grasp the speed of the game and is the type of back that will get better during the game by more touches. I don't think our offense is that type of offense anymore to allow Mendenhall to come into his own. I would like to see Mendenhall get a full game under his belt as the designed runningback.

Jooser
09-16-2009, 09:21 AM
What I question is, are other teams finding the same problems as us ? Do other teams not run into the conflict of injuries, new players, old players, etc and have our troubles ? I forget what game it was I was watching this weeekend but the annoucer was giving praise for the rookie offensive line players so, it's not impossible to learn or gel quickly. .

Anyway, listening to Madden on the radio yesterday and some of the call ins, he and or they, are saying Mendenhall is a bust. Madden said it is too early to officially call him a bust but the truth wil come out that, he is a bust . He also said he'll be off or should be cut from this team by next season.

Do you guys think Mendenhall is a bust ? Madden asked one of the callers if Mendenhall has shown any glimps or made any positive steps on why he was a number one pick and neither could come up with one.

i think Mendenhall needs to touch the ball more, needs to grasp the speed of the game and is the type of back that will get better during the game by more touches. I don't think our offense is that type of offense anymore to allow Mendenhall to come into his own. I would like to see Mendenhall get a full game under his belt as the designed runningback.

:Agree good points

steelblood
09-16-2009, 09:21 AM
This o-line has seen plenty of 4-3 lines. That is a terrible excuse. The Titans won the physical battle not the schematic one. If our line blocked better, if we had a sledge hammer FB, if Willie saw the cutback lanes......then, we would have had a serviceable day against Tenn.

stlrz d
09-16-2009, 10:23 AM
I'm very confused about that part. I thought the first teams practiced against the, uhmm, practice squad, and the practice squad was set up to mimic the schemes of the upcoming week's opponents?

So if they were going up against a 4-3 in the Titans, why didn't the first team offense practice against a 4-3 the week before? :?

Typically yes, but during camp you're not really running scout teams that mimic another team's scheme.

Jooser
09-16-2009, 10:56 AM
The guys running the 4-3 were just shooting the gaps against our run. Our O-line was very slow to react and it allowed the LBs to fill without much interference. We have to get smarter and quicker on the OL.

RKSteel
09-16-2009, 11:08 AM
What I question is, are other teams finding the same problems as us ? Do other teams not run into the conflict of injuries, new players, old players, etc and have our troubles ? I forget what game it was I was watching this weeekend but the annoucer was giving praise for the rookie offensive line players so, it's not impossible to learn or gel quickly. .

Anyway, listening to Madden on the radio yesterday and some of the call ins, he and or they, are saying Mendenhall is a bust. Madden said it is too early to officially call him a bust but the truth wil come out that, he is a bust . He also said he'll be off or should be cut from this team by next season.

Do you guys think Mendenhall is a bust ? Madden asked one of the callers if Mendenhall has shown any glimps or made any positive steps on why he was a number one pick and neither could come up with one.

i think Mendenhall needs to touch the ball more, needs to grasp the speed of the game and is the type of back that will get better during the game by more touches. I don't think our offense is that type of offense anymore to allow Mendenhall to come into his own. I would like to see Mendenhall get a full game under his belt as the designed runningback.
To me it looked like Mendenhall was running harder, fighting for that 2yds. I like to see him in for a couple of series to get him into a rhythm.

fezziwig
09-16-2009, 11:18 AM
Yes, he needs his chance and more than just a couple of plays here and there. Obviously the coaches see him every day and during training camp so, have they decided or learned that he is not the answer ?

Moore seems to take advantage of his chances when he gets the call. I just think Mendy is let me get my engine warmed up type of guy. Is there a team on the schedule that our running game would stack up well against ? i'm thinking the Bengals might be a good breakout game for him.

I think the only way Parker does well is when the o-line is doing well or the defense is so keyed on snufing out the passing game then, Willie gets his big yards.

Here's a dirty word , Redman. Again, the coaches know these players better than us but the guy sure looked better than the rest of the crowd. I'd like to see him running with the first team in a true game.

Ghost
09-16-2009, 11:43 AM
Isn't the talk always how RB's need carries to get warmed up and get in a groove? Get some momentum going. How is Mendenhall ever going to get into a rythym with 4 carries in a game?

1 game into his second season (after missing most of the entire first season) is a little bit early to be throwing around the "bust" lable and predicting his getting cut.

RuthlessBurgher
09-16-2009, 12:26 PM
What I question is, are other teams finding the same problems as us ? Do other teams not run into the conflict of injuries, new players, old players, etc and have our troubles ? I forget what game it was I was watching this weeekend but the annoucer was giving praise for the rookie offensive line players so, it's not impossible to learn or gel quickly. .

Anyway, listening to Madden on the radio yesterday and some of the call ins, he and or they, are saying Mendenhall is a bust. Madden said it is too early to officially call him a bust but the truth wil come out that, he is a bust . He also said he'll be off or should be cut from this team by next season.

Do you guys think Mendenhall is a bust ? Madden asked one of the callers if Mendenhall has shown any glimps or made any positive steps on why he was a number one pick and neither could come up with one.

i think Mendenhall needs to touch the ball more, needs to grasp the speed of the game and is the type of back that will get better during the game by more touches. I don't think our offense is that type of offense anymore to allow Mendenhall to come into his own. I would like to see Mendenhall get a full game under his belt as the designed runningback.

Madden routinely uses shock jock tactics to drum up interest for his show, since he does not know as much about football as he does about hockey. To say that he will be cut next season is ludicrous at this point. He's a first round pick who was drafted as a 20 year old and was injured during the first month of his rookie season. Then in his first game back, they are calling him a bust? News flash...he may have had only 1.5 yards per carry (4 carries for 6 yards), but that is the same average that Parker had (13 carries for 19 yards) as well as Moore (5 carries for 8 yards). The run blocking sucked against a solid run D, so no one could get going.

I thought Barfalomew was fired from his radio gig last year. Did someone else pick him up?

JTP53609
09-16-2009, 12:56 PM
i dont like the offensive line basically saying they were unprepared against the 4 man front of the titans, sounds a bit childish to me....

SanAntonioSteelerFan
09-16-2009, 01:42 PM
I'm very confused about that part. I thought the first teams practiced against the, uhmm, practice squad, and the practice squad was set up to mimic the schemes of the upcoming week's opponents?

So if they were going up against a 4-3 in the Titans, why didn't the first team offense practice against a 4-3 the week before? :?

Typically yes, but during camp you're not really running scout teams that mimic another team's scheme.

Thanks, stlrz d!

phillyesq
09-16-2009, 04:23 PM
What I question is, are other teams finding the same problems as us ? Do other teams not run into the conflict of injuries, new players, old players, etc and have our troubles ? I forget what game it was I was watching this weeekend but the annoucer was giving praise for the rookie offensive line players so, it's not impossible to learn or gel quickly. .

Anyway, listening to Madden on the radio yesterday and some of the call ins, he and or they, are saying Mendenhall is a bust. Madden said it is too early to officially call him a bust but the truth wil come out that, he is a bust . He also said he'll be off or should be cut from this team by next season.

Do you guys think Mendenhall is a bust ? Madden asked one of the callers if Mendenhall has shown any glimps or made any positive steps on why he was a number one pick and neither could come up with one.

i think Mendenhall needs to touch the ball more, needs to grasp the speed of the game and is the type of back that will get better during the game by more touches. I don't think our offense is that type of offense anymore to allow Mendenhall to come into his own. I would like to see Mendenhall get a full game under his belt as the designed runningback.
To me it looked like Mendenhall was running harder, fighting for that 2yds. I like to see him in for a couple of series to get him into a rhythm.

I thought that Mendenhall ran hard, even if he had nowhere to go. I know a lot of talking heads are down on Mendenhall, but its too early to declare him Bustenhall.

The thing that does concern me is that there was not a lot of positive buzz from camp about Mendenhall. With a first round pick, you expect to hear all sorts of rave reviews, or at the very least, reports like those on Sweed -- high upside, but needs consistency. I haven't heard much buzz at all re: Mendenhall, which causes some concern.

RuthlessBurgher
09-16-2009, 04:32 PM
Following the path of Troy took from Bustamalu to likely Hall of Fame safety (how much bronze will they use to accurately portray his hair?), I'm hoping that Rashard is able to turn Bustenhall on its ear to become BustInTheHall some day.

:tt2 :tt1