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SteelAbility
11-24-2009, 11:14 PM
http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news;_ylt=A ... &type=lgns (http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/news;_ylt=AtwoPjmvUXAPfRuSOtYWudpDubYF?slug=jc-directsnap112409&prov=yhoo&type=lgns)

In the span of four possessions, Ben Roethlisberger(notes) combined a lesson of how to make his career survive long term with a painful reminder of why some people worry that he won’t last.

With 8:35 remaining in regulation on Sunday at Kansas City, Roethlisberger hit running back Rashard Mendenhall(notes) with an 8-yard touchdown pass to take a seven-point lead. It was a beautiful, tight throw into the teeth of the Chiefs defense. It was Mendenhall’s first career scoring reception and one of a career-high four passes he caught on the day.

Those facts are significant because the overall success of Roethlisberger, and the Pittsburgh offense, is greatly impacted by plays like that one.

While Indianapolis Colts quarterback Peyton Manning(notes) has thrown eight touchdown passes to current running backs Joseph Addai(notes) and former Colt Dominic Rhodes(notes) during the past two seasons, Roethlisberger only has four to his three tailbacks (Mendenhall, Mewelde Moore(notes) and Willie Parking) in the same period. Ultimately, Roethlisberger would be wise to make more use of his running backs, who have combined to catch only 81 passes since the beginning of 2008 (the Colts trio has 115).

That’s because what happened about 11 minutes later in the Chiefs-Steelers game is an indictor of how things can go bad for Pittsburgh and Roethlisberger. It’s a big reason why Roethlisberger may never win a Most Valuable Player award he was in line for until two games ago. Most important, it’s a big reason why he might not have a long career.

Less than three minutes into overtime, Roethlisberger was sacked and knocked out of the game with a mild concussion. He didn’t return, the Steelers failed to score and Kansas City went on to win 27-24.

As Roethlisberger is wont to do, his sack came after he scrambled trying to extend the play and find a receiver downfield. This is the prototypical Roethlisberger play, which is a big reason why he is one of the best downfield throwers in the game.

However, the lesson Roethlisberger needs to learn is that throwing short isn’t always a bad idea. Moreover, sometimes there are just as many yards to get throwing underneath to a running back as there are throwing downfield to a wide receiver.

Really, truly.

For instance, when Roethlisberger had a season-worst 51.5 quarterback rating during a Week 10 loss to the Cincinnati Bengals, he missed at least four throws underneath to running backs. He was clearly forcing throws down the field, ultimately costing the Steelers a chance to move the ball more effectively.

“The Steelers are really unique in what they do because they are so vertical with their attack,” former St. Louis Rams head coach Mike Martz said this week. “[Roethlisberger] works so hard to create time, even if it means taking a hit, to get something going downfield.”

Again, that’s noble in some ways and, in another way, unwise to the point of counterproductive.

Mostly, Roethlisberger’s insistence on throwing deep has made him easy to read. Not easy to stop, mind you, but easier to game plan against.

“You can’t dispute the guy’s toughness,” a top team executive said of Roethlisberger this week. “I never thought he’d be a great passer, but he really is. He’s different, now. He wants to challenge you all the time. He’s looking for a big play. Not every time, but a lot. In the Cincinnati game, he wasn’t smart about it and forced too much action.”

As one NFL coach put it: “Punt the ball, go play defense, get the ball back, score the next time you get it. Not every play has to be a touchdown.”

Or, to put it in another perspective, some touchdowns can be thrown to people other than wide receivers. Roethlisberger can open the field with throws to running backs, forcing the defense to have to play inside out.

That was a favorite tactic of one of Roethlisberger’s heroes growing up, Dan Marino. Marino loved the idea of throwing to tight ends in the middle of the field. He loved throwing to running backs breaking downfield. He understood that those throws kept the defense honest.

And, ultimately, off of him.



I think I agree to great extent, especially with Moore's pass-catching ability.

Oviedo
11-24-2009, 11:48 PM
Can't say I disagree at all. I've said for years that Ben forcing deep throws is the weakest part of his game. Until he fixes that and takes what defenses give him he will have a couple bad games on a recurring basis.

grotonsteel
11-25-2009, 12:13 AM
How many deep passes does Big Ben throw in each game???

Running Backs are not their to catch the ball . WR are suppose to catch the pass thrown by QB.We don't want Steelers offense to turn into Chicago bears offense where Matt Forte was their leading WR last year.

Wolfhound45
11-25-2009, 12:55 AM
Thanks for the post SteelAbility. It is a good read and provides an interesting perspective on some of our offensive woes as of late. I especially love this quote.


As one NFL coach put it: “Punt the ball, go play defense, get the ball back, score the next time you get it. Not every play has to be a touchdown.”

You do not "win the game" on every play.

In regards to this comment from grotonsteel;


We don't want Steelers offense to turn into Chicago bears offense where Matt Forte was their leading WR last year.

I agree and I disagree.

Every eligible receiver on the field is a threat if the quarterback makes them a threat. The problem is, opposing defenses are abandoning the short, inside/outside game because they know that the "gunslinger" in Ben loves (loves) to go deep. They are focusing on containment and deep pass defense. Result? A breakdown in pass protection and a sack of Ben.

I agree with you that I do not want to make the running backs the focus of the passing offense. But you have to keep a defense honest and take what they give you. Unfortunately, that is (in my opinion) a weakness to Ben's game.

Starlifter
11-25-2009, 01:10 AM
if rashard inspires confidence in ben, he will get the ball more. Ben has been focused on getting the ball downfield because for the last 4 years he's had the running back formerly known as FWP in the backfield. Willie has many skills. catching a simple pass out of the backfield has never really been one of them.

Mister Pittsburgh
11-25-2009, 05:03 AM
How many deep passes does Big Ben throw in each game???

Running Backs are not their to catch the ball . WR are suppose to catch the pass thrown by QB.We don't want Steelers offense to turn into Chicago bears offense where Matt Forte was their leading WR last year.

FAIL

NorthCoast
11-25-2009, 08:50 AM
I don't agree that Ben is one of the 'best downfield throwers' in the game. We have seen he is not all that accurate on the long ball. His best throws are the intermediate routes. I was really encouraged in the KC game when Ben seemed to be taking the checkdowns. Defenses do seemed to have adjusted to his game so now it is on Ben to make some changes in his decisionmaking. Hope he is not too stubborn to realize it.

SteelAbility
11-25-2009, 10:27 AM
Every eligible receiver on the field is a threat if the quarterback makes them a threat. The problem is, opposing defenses are abandoning the short, inside/outside game because they know that the "gunslinger" in Ben loves (loves) to go deep. They are focusing on containment and deep pass defense. Result? A breakdown in pass protection and a sack of Ben.

I agree with you that I do not want to make the running backs the focus of the passing offense. But you have to keep a defense honest and take what they give you. Unfortunately, that is (in my opinion) a weakness to Ben's game.


$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Show more dimensions on offense and you make the D's job harder and your job easier.

NWNewell
11-25-2009, 11:04 AM
The guy is a moron.

Ben wasn't sacked scrambling to find a guy down field. He was tackled past the line og scrimage trying to run for the first when no one was opened.

When would he like Ben to pass to the RB? When it's first and goal from the 4 and we go four wide empty set like we did against Cincy? Or pass to Willie who is a very poor receiving back. Or wen we go single back and keep him in to block?

I agree with the idea and with Mendenhall emerging as a good alround back with good hands, I hope we do see that more. But it's not like that option has been there often in the past.

grotonsteel
11-25-2009, 11:07 AM
How many deep passes does Big Ben throw in each game???

Running Backs are not their to catch the ball . WR are suppose to catch the pass thrown by QB.We don't want Steelers offense to turn into Chicago bears offense where Matt Forte was their leading WR last year.

FAIL


You want Big Ben to turn into Trent Edwards..Mr Checkdown???? :roll:

grotonsteel
11-25-2009, 11:13 AM
Every eligible receiver on the field is a threat if the quarterback makes them a threat. The problem is, opposing defenses are abandoning the short, inside/outside game because they know that the "gunslinger" in Ben loves (loves) to go deep. They are focusing on containment and deep pass defense. Result? A breakdown in pass protection and a sack of Ben.

I agree with you that I do not want to make the running backs the focus of the passing offense. But you have to keep a defense honest and take what they give you. Unfortunately, that is (in my opinion) a weakness to Ben's game.


$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Show more dimensions on offense and you make the D's job harder and your job easier.



35% of Big Ben completion are to Miller/Mendy/Moore.

What more dimension you need? If your QB is throwing only to RBs then either your O-line blows or your WRs are not getting open.

Super Bowls are not won by throwing bubble screens or 2-3 yards passes.

Again i want to ask people how many deep passes does Big Ben throws per game???

That article is complete crap.

RuthlessBurgher
11-25-2009, 11:14 AM
The guy is a moron.

Ben wasn't sacked scrambling to find a guy down field. He was tackled past the line og scrimage trying to run for the first when no one was opened.

When would he like Ben to pass to the RB? When it's first and goal from the 4 and we go four wide empty set like we did against Cincy? Or pass to Willie who is a very poor receiving back. Or wen we go single back and keep him in to block?

I agree with the idea and with Mendenhall emerging as a good alround back with good hands, I hope we do see that more. But it's not like that option has been there often in the past.

It is true that in the Bettis & Parker years, it was not wise to throw to the RB too much, because that did not fit their style or abilities. But now that we are in the Mendenhall & Moore era, it opens up a new threat for the defense to worry about. It wouldn't be the first time we utilized such a resource. Back in the late 80's and early 90's, we used Merril Hoge and John L. Williams as targets out of the backfield quite often.

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
11-25-2009, 11:26 AM
How many deep passes does Big Ben throw in each game???

Running Backs are not their to catch the ball . WR are suppose to catch the pass thrown by QB.We don't want Steelers offense to turn into Chicago bears offense where Matt Forte was their leading WR last year.

FAIL

That theory cost us the 2nd Bengals game. Teams can take away the vertical game. It then becomes the responsibilty of the coaches & QB to recognize this and make the adjustments in play calling, route running, and reads in progression. Take what they want to give you. If you try to force feed your offensive scheme in a defense that is taking away the deep 3rds of the field...You get the Bengals game. If Arains would have made the adjustment in that game it would have had a different outcome. We see now Mendenhall has good hands. In the Bengals game...Miller, Moore, & Mendenhall should have had 3-5 catches a piece. It was there...The playcalling wasn't.

I give credit to Arians, although a game too late, seeing that in the films and incorporating some type of check downs in the Chiefs game. It needs to be in the playbook and practiced every week. Some teams are going to come out and stack the box. That is when we go vertical. Like the Bengals game, some teams say you will have to dink & dunk all day but we are not giving up the big play in the passing game. Someone wanted to prove a point that game and came out the loser.

Balance is key. They Steelers have a really talented WR group and a QB to go with. Balance is key in the playcalling. The pass first to set up the run theory is in full swing now with the Steelers and defenses know that. So when they adjust to the pass..."McFly"<Arians>...You got what you want...As long as you take advantage of it. And remember...A dump or swing out of a passing formation is the same as a run. It shallows the LBs drops and creates that productive area in front of the Ss. That is where Ben makes his money when Wallace takes the top off the coverage. If the Steelers don't show they will attack underneath with RBs & TEs...The LBs will have deeper drops and be set up right in front of our crossing WRs. Arains did a good job against the Chiefs to attack that. If he continues to build on that the offense will become potent against any defense game plan. The offense will have the ability to adjust and then it becomes a guessing game. That is all you want. No tendencies..."cough" "cough"...Arians!

ikestops85
11-25-2009, 11:30 AM
How many deep passes does Big Ben throw in each game???

Running Backs are not their to catch the ball . WR are suppose to catch the pass thrown by QB.We don't want Steelers offense to turn into Chicago bears offense where Matt Forte was their leading WR last year.

FAIL


You want Big Ben to turn into Trent Edwards..Mr Checkdown???? :roll:

I don't think that is what he is saying. There is an art to the checkdown pass. Some QBs intuitively know when to dump it off and let the RB try and make a play. That is not Ben's strength. He doesn't ever want to give up on a play and that is part of why he is a winner.

In the last game I was screaming for him to run and instead he goes to the line of scrimmage and hits Heath on the run for a TD. Ben is Ben. He will always be more like Farve than Montana. He will never be perfect.

The guy is exciting ... he is a Steeler ... I love the fact that he is a Steeler.

:tt2 :tt2

Steeler Mafia
11-25-2009, 11:30 AM
How many deep passes does Big Ben throw in each game???

Running Backs are not their to catch the ball . WR are suppose to catch the pass thrown by QB.We don't want Steelers offense to turn into Chicago bears offense where Matt Forte was their leading WR last year.

FAIL


You want Big Ben to turn into Trent Edwards..Mr Checkdown???? :roll:

That is not a fair assessment. The point is by throwing to the RB and TE, you can keep the chains moving, keeping the D honest, and open up the opportunities to stretch the field. What Ben seems to do is force the ball down field to force the action and get the big play. Take what the defense gives you and then expose them once they make a mistake. This not only keeps the D on thier toes, but hopefully exhausts them during the course of the game.

I honestly believe that we don't utilize the passes to the TE or RB enough. Much like the article above stated, Marino made his career by doing this. Anyone here going to question how great Marino was? If so, you really do not know football.

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
11-25-2009, 12:00 PM
The guy is a moron.

Ben wasn't sacked scrambling to find a guy down field. He was tackled past the line og scrimage trying to run for the first when no one was opened.

When would he like Ben to pass to the RB? When it's first and goal from the 4 and we go four wide empty set like we did against Cincy? Or pass to Willie who is a very poor receiving back. Or wen we go single back and keep him in to block?

I agree with the idea and with Mendenhall emerging as a good alround back with good hands, I hope we do see that more. But it's not like that option has been there often in the past.

It is true that in the Bettis & Parker years, it was not wise to throw to the RB too much, because that did not fit their style or abilities. But now that we are in the Mendenhall & Moore era, it opens up a new threat for the defense to worry about. It wouldn't be the first time we utilized such a resource. Back in the late 80's and early 90's, we used Merril Hoge and John L. Williams as targets out of the backfield quite often.

There's that name John L. Great analysis Ruth! I gave him credit to that potent passing game of O'Donnell, Thigpen, Mills, Hastings...etc. Bam & Pegram kept them in the box and that set of Wrs could work all day behind them. Throw JLW in the backfield and spread them out the D backed up to help. John L out of the backfield all day. 1994 JLW & Bam had 73 receptions between them, 51 by JLW. 1995 JLW & Pegram had 50 receptions and Bam added 8. All the RBs combined this year have 38 receptions. In 2008, we had 54 total with Moore having 40 alone. The Steelers had 6 receptions by RBs against the Chiefs alone....None by Moore though. Will see if there is a trend this week. It will be difficult underneath this week. I expect a vertical attack because the Ravens are week in the back 4 not the front seven.

grotonsteel
11-25-2009, 12:14 PM
[quote=grotonsteel]How many deep passes does Big Ben throw in each game???

Running Backs are not their to catch the ball . WR are suppose to catch the pass thrown by QB.We don't want Steelers offense to turn into Chicago bears offense where Matt Forte was their leading WR last year.

FAIL


You want Big Ben to turn into Trent Edwards..Mr Checkdown???? :roll:

That is not a fair assessment. The point is by throwing to the RB and TE, you can keep the chains moving, keeping the D honest, and open up the opportunities to stretch the field. What Ben seems to do is force the ball down field to force the action and get the big play. Take what the defense gives you and then expose them once they make a mistake. This not only keeps the D on thier toes, but hopefully exhausts them during the course of the game.

I honestly believe that we don't utilize the passes to the TE or RB enough. Much like the article above stated, Marino made his career by doing this. Anyone here going to question how great Marino was? If so, you really do not know football.[/quote:1djvahst]

As i said Big Ben has 35% completion to his TE/RBs this season. Do you want Big Ben to throw 2-3 yards passes to RB on 3rd and 10??? Simply Wow. Steelers are not going to win games with Big Ben not trying to make a play.

I want people to tell me how many deep throws Big Ben tries to throw per game?? He had one bad game that was against Cincy this season where he attempted 4-5 deep passes and could not connect.

Steelers had 44 min TOP against KC and still Steelers D laid a big egg.

Marino may be the greatest QB but he has won nothing.

Steeler Mafia
11-25-2009, 01:05 PM
[quote=grotonsteel]How many deep passes does Big Ben throw in each game???

Running Backs are not their to catch the ball . WR are suppose to catch the pass thrown by QB.We don't want Steelers offense to turn into Chicago bears offense where Matt Forte was their leading WR last year.

FAIL


You want Big Ben to turn into Trent Edwards..Mr Checkdown???? :roll:

That is not a fair assessment. The point is by throwing to the RB and TE, you can keep the chains moving, keeping the D honest, and open up the opportunities to stretch the field. What Ben seems to do is force the ball down field to force the action and get the big play. Take what the defense gives you and then expose them once they make a mistake. This not only keeps the D on thier toes, but hopefully exhausts them during the course of the game.

I honestly believe that we don't utilize the passes to the TE or RB enough. Much like the article above stated, Marino made his career by doing this. Anyone here going to question how great Marino was? If so, you really do not know football.

As i said Big Ben has 35% completion to his TE/RBs this season. Do you want Big Ben to throw 2-3 yards passes to RB on 3rd and 10??? Simply Wow. Steelers are not going to win games with Big Ben not trying to make a play.

I want people to tell me how many deep throws Big Ben tries to throw per game?? He had one bad game that was against Cincy this season where he attempted 4-5 deep passes and could not connect.

Steelers had 44 min TOP against KC and still Steelers D laid a big egg.

Marino may be the greatest QB but he has won nothing.[/quote:n37v6499]

Make up your mind dude. At first you say that RB are not there to catch the ball, then you put it into a situation of 3rd and 10. :HeadBanger

Nowhere did I suggest that I want Ben to throw a 2 to 3 yard pass to the RB on 3rd and 10. In that situation, you need to get the ball to the sticks. However, in other situations, you get the ball to your backs any way you can. A 2 to 3 yard pass is just as good as a 2 to 3 yard run.

Mister Pittsburgh
11-25-2009, 01:31 PM
[quote=grotonsteel][quote

That is not a fair assessment. The point is by throwing to the RB and TE, you can keep the chains moving, keeping the D honest, and open up the opportunities to stretch the field. What Ben seems to do is force the ball down field to force the action and get the big play. Take what the defense gives you and then expose them once they make a mistake. This not only keeps the D on thier toes, but hopefully exhausts them during the course of the game.

I honestly believe that we don't utilize the passes to the TE or RB enough. Much like the article above stated, Marino made his career by doing this. Anyone here going to question how great Marino was? If so, you really do not know football.

As i said Big Ben has 35% completion to his TE/RBs this season. Do you want Big Ben to throw 2-3 yards passes to RB on 3rd and 10??? Simply Wow. Steelers are not going to win games with Big Ben not trying to make a play.

I want people to tell me how many deep throws Big Ben tries to throw per game?? He had one bad game that was against Cincy this season where he attempted 4-5 deep passes and could not connect.

Steelers had 44 min TOP against KC and still Steelers D laid a big egg.

Marino may be the greatest QB but he has won nothing.

Make up your mind dude. At first you say that RB are not there to catch the ball, then you put it into a situation of 3rd and 10. :HeadBanger

Nowhere did I suggest that I want Ben to throw a 2 to 3 yard pass to the RB on 3rd and 10. In that situation, you need to get the ball to the sticks. However, in other situations, you get the ball to your backs any way you can. A 2 to 3 yard pass is just as good as a 2 to 3 yard run.[/quote:2rs0clo4]

The guy is just making stuff up to try and make the point he was trying to prove relevent. He was wrong, plain and simple. And I have seen numerous times where Ben looks at Mewelde 8 yards downfield on 2nd or 3rd & 6 and Mewelde is wide open with nobody is within 10 yards of him....and he looks him off and tries to find someone downfield only to take a sack. That, is stupid, not heroic or like 'gunslinger-esque'.

The problem with our passing game is there aren't enough timing patterns. Ben plays the game like it is backyard football and he has to visually see the WR wide open before he will throw it. That is why his deep balls are always late. He never just throws it downfield when his WR is in an obvious one on one....well not 'never' but hardly does he do this. The problem with most your pass plays being intended for someone 20 yards downfield is that you take a slow 5 step drop, then look and try and find an open receiver. Go watch Brady or Manning. Half the passes they throw are quick 3 step drops and throwing to a spot where his receiver is supposed to be.

We rarely throw passes over the middle in the 5 to 15 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage between the tackle boxes (the void in the defense left vacant by linebackers natural positioning plus the ones that blitz and safeties covering the deep part of the field on the outside to help out the CB.

Djfan
11-25-2009, 01:50 PM
The guy is just making stuff up to try and make the point he was trying to prove relevent. He was wrong, plain and simple. And I have seen numerous times where Ben looks at Mewelde 8 yards downfield on 2nd or 3rd & 6 and Mewelde is wide open with nobody is within 10 yards of him....and he looks him off and tries to find someone downfield only to take a sack. That, is stupid, not heroic or like 'gunslinger-esque'.

The problem with our passing game is there aren't enough timing patterns. Ben plays the game like it is backyard football and he has to visually see the WR wide open before he will throw it. That is why his deep balls are always late. He never just throws it downfield when his WR is in an obvious one on one....well not 'never' but hardly does he do this. The problem with most your pass plays being intended for someone 20 yards downfield is that you take a slow 5 step drop, then look and try and find an open receiver. Go watch Brady or Manning. Half the passes they throw are quick 3 step drops and throwing to a spot where his receiver is supposed to be.

We rarely throw passes over the middle in the 5 to 15 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage between the tackle boxes (the void in the defense left vacant by linebackers natural positioning plus the ones that blitz and safeties covering the deep part of the field on the outside to help out the CB.

Careful, MP. Saying truth like this around here is not well received.

DHSF
11-25-2009, 02:00 PM
On the play in the KC game where Ben got hurt, I believe it was 2nd and 3. He had Mendy several yards ahead of him looking for a dump pass, but Ben ignored him and tried to run for the first down. Not only did he fail to make the first down, but got injured in the process. I love Ben, but that was a bone head play. Dump it to the running back and let him take the hit.

RuthlessBurgher
11-25-2009, 02:20 PM
We rarely throw passes over the middle in the 5 to 15 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage between the tackle boxes (the void in the defense left vacant by linebackers natural positioning plus the ones that blitz and safeties covering the deep part of the field on the outside to help out the CB.

You make it sound like Ben is just going bombs away on every play, when the majority of his passes are in the area where you claim we rarely throw.

Heath Miller already has a career high for catches with 54 through 10 games and Hines Ward having 63 catches through 10 games means he is on pace for 100 catches for the second time in his career. Heath and Hines make their living on passes over the middle in the 5 to 15 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage between the tackle boxes. Also, many of Santonio's 50 catches through 10 games (only 5 away from his career high) are thrown in that area, allowing him to make yards after the catch.

Mister Pittsburgh
11-25-2009, 02:25 PM
We rarely throw passes over the middle in the 5 to 15 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage between the tackle boxes (the void in the defense left vacant by linebackers natural positioning plus the ones that blitz and safeties covering the deep part of the field on the outside to help out the CB.

You make it sound like Ben is just going bombs away on every play, when the majority of his passes are in the area where you claim we rarely throw.

Heath Miller already has a career high for catches with 54 through 10 games and Hines Ward having 63 catches through 10 games means he is on pace for 100 catches for the second time in his career. Heath and Hines make their living on passes over the middle in the 5 to 15 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage between the tackle boxes. Also, many of Santonio's 50 catches through 10 games (only 5 away from his career high) are thrown in that area, allowing him to make yards after the catch.

I dont' agree. Most of our passing game is outside the tackles. We do go short over the middle here and there but a majority is outside and that is due to the bunch formations. Most the stuff we hit over the middle is 15 yards and beyond.

Just like anything mentioned on here.....nothing is 100% of the time. But a majority are outside the tackle box.

Personally I hate the bunch formation. It takes too long for the WR to get out of the 'bunch'

RuthlessBurgher
11-25-2009, 02:45 PM
[quote="Mister Pittsburgh":2far9c16]We rarely throw passes over the middle in the 5 to 15 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage between the tackle boxes (the void in the defense left vacant by linebackers natural positioning plus the ones that blitz and safeties covering the deep part of the field on the outside to help out the CB.

You make it sound like Ben is just going bombs away on every play, when the majority of his passes are in the area where you claim we rarely throw.

Heath Miller already has a career high for catches with 54 through 10 games and Hines Ward having 63 catches through 10 games means he is on pace for 100 catches for the second time in his career. Heath and Hines make their living on passes over the middle in the 5 to 15 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage between the tackle boxes. Also, many of Santonio's 50 catches through 10 games (only 5 away from his career high) are thrown in that area, allowing him to make yards after the catch.

I dont' agree. Most of our passing game is outside the tackles. We do go short over the middle here and there but a majority is outside and that is due to the bunch formations. Most the stuff we hit over the middle is 15 yards and beyond.

Just like anything mentioned on here.....nothing is 100% of the time. But a majority are outside the tackle box.

Personally I hate the bunch formation. It takes too long for the WR to get out of the 'bunch'[/quote:2far9c16]

I'm not a huge fan of the banana bunch myself (but I'll take it 10 times out of 10 over the empty backfield set). I prefer our standard formation with Heath next to Colon and Holmes wide to that side, Wallace out wide on the other side with Hines in the slot, and Rashard behind Ben in the single back set. You can run inside or outside and pass underneath or over the top out of that set. It seems like our most versatile formation to keep the opposition on their toes, not knowing what is coming (as opposed to the triple-TE I-formation set that screams run up the middle or the empty backfield that screams deep pass).

Flasteel
11-25-2009, 03:24 PM
We rarely throw passes over the middle in the 5 to 15 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage between the tackle boxes (the void in the defense left vacant by linebackers natural positioning plus the ones that blitz and safeties covering the deep part of the field on the outside to help out the CB.

You make it sound like Ben is just going bombs away on every play, when the majority of his passes are in the area where you claim we rarely throw.

Heath Miller already has a career high for catches with 54 through 10 games and Hines Ward having 63 catches through 10 games means he is on pace for 100 catches for the second time in his career. Heath and Hines make their living on passes over the middle in the 5 to 15 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage between the tackle boxes. Also, many of Santonio's 50 catches through 10 games (only 5 away from his career high) are thrown in that area, allowing him to make yards after the catch.

Excellent points RB.

I think we all agree that Ben ignores or otherwise doesn't look for his backs because we've all seen more than a few open during plays. However, Ben is sporting the highest completion percentage of his career and is on pace for over 4,500 yards and 27 TDs. In otherwords, he is getting it done.

A lot of it is that intermediate range to the receivers and TE's. Ben has only completed 10% of his passes to backs for 10% of his total yards. Additionally, our receivers rank 8th in the league in YAC yards (1302 or 45% of our total passing yards) and we have the 11th most pass plays over 25 yards (21). This shows that Ben isn't exactly throwing rain-makers and our receivers our getting a lot of the yards after catch.

Downfield thrower in this case doesn't mean that he is the incarnation of Darryl Lamonica, it just means that he is throwing the ball down the field (vs. inside 5 or 10 yards) and most of it is in that intermediate range. It's also very effective. We are 4th in the league in receiving 1st downs (141) and also 4th in the percentage of 1st downs per attempt. So the throws he's making are on target and count.

I think he does need to look more at his backs however. His percentage of sacks and the 10 picks could maybe be significantly reduced and those are high-impact, negative plays. The backs have been there and we have all seen them at times. I say lthere is some room to look to them more in your progressions and have more designed screens to take advantage of Moore and Mendenhall's abilities.

Mister Pittsburgh
11-25-2009, 04:43 PM
I think the biggest issue is plain and simple our redzone offense. We move the ball great between the 20's but it is like Ben & Arians crap themselves once we hit the 20's.

SteelAbility
11-25-2009, 04:47 PM
Every eligible receiver on the field is a threat if the quarterback makes them a threat. The problem is, opposing defenses are abandoning the short, inside/outside game because they know that the "gunslinger" in Ben loves (loves) to go deep. They are focusing on containment and deep pass defense. Result? A breakdown in pass protection and a sack of Ben.

I agree with you that I do not want to make the running backs the focus of the passing offense. But you have to keep a defense honest and take what they give you. Unfortunately, that is (in my opinion) a weakness to Ben's game.


$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Show more dimensions on offense and you make the D's job harder and your job easier.



35% of Big Ben completion are to Miller/Mendy/Moore.

What more dimension you need? If your QB is throwing only to RBs then either your O-line blows or your WRs are not getting open.

Super Bowls are not won by throwing bubble screens or 2-3 yards passes.

Again i want to ask people how many deep passes does Big Ben throws per game???

That article is complete crap.

The article didn't say to throw only to your RBs. It said to make more use of your RBs in the passing game. What happens is that an equalization takes place. Initially, when the D isn't expecting it, a higher percentage goes to the RBs. Then as they get burned on that, they start cheating more to defend that, opening up the throws to the WRs. Then the balance of power shifts the other way, the difference being that with the exercise of more threats, the offense becomes more more efficient overall.

And somehow I think the point about keeping Ben healthy is missed in all of this mix. I'm going to go out on a limb and say since he has a $100M contract, it would behoove us to make some adjustments and put some more hedge in the passing game to keep him that way.

Jooser
11-25-2009, 04:55 PM
[quote="Steeler Mafia":2bmdv3wx][quote=grotonsteel][quote

That is not a fair assessment. The point is by throwing to the RB and TE, you can keep the chains moving, keeping the D honest, and open up the opportunities to stretch the field. What Ben seems to do is force the ball down field to force the action and get the big play. Take what the defense gives you and then expose them once they make a mistake. This not only keeps the D on thier toes, but hopefully exhausts them during the course of the game.

I honestly believe that we don't utilize the passes to the TE or RB enough. Much like the article above stated, Marino made his career by doing this. Anyone here going to question how great Marino was? If so, you really do not know football.

As i said Big Ben has 35% completion to his TE/RBs this season. Do you want Big Ben to throw 2-3 yards passes to RB on 3rd and 10??? Simply Wow. Steelers are not going to win games with Big Ben not trying to make a play.

I want people to tell me how many deep throws Big Ben tries to throw per game?? He had one bad game that was against Cincy this season where he attempted 4-5 deep passes and could not connect.

Steelers had 44 min TOP against KC and still Steelers D laid a big egg.

Marino may be the greatest QB but he has won nothing.

Make up your mind dude. At first you say that RB are not there to catch the ball, then you put it into a situation of 3rd and 10. :HeadBanger

Nowhere did I suggest that I want Ben to throw a 2 to 3 yard pass to the RB on 3rd and 10. In that situation, you need to get the ball to the sticks. However, in other situations, you get the ball to your backs any way you can. A 2 to 3 yard pass is just as good as a 2 to 3 yard run.[/quote:2bmdv3wx]

The guy is just making stuff up to try and make the point he was trying to prove relevent. He was wrong, plain and simple. And I have seen numerous times where Ben looks at Mewelde 8 yards downfield on 2nd or 3rd & 6 and Mewelde is wide open with nobody is within 10 yards of him....and he looks him off and tries to find someone downfield only to take a sack. That, is stupid, not heroic or like 'gunslinger-esque'.

The problem with our passing game is there aren't enough timing patterns. Ben plays the game like it is backyard football and he has to visually see the WR wide open before he will throw it. That is why his deep balls are always late. He never just throws it downfield when his WR is in an obvious one on one....well not 'never' but hardly does he do this. The problem with most your pass plays being intended for someone 20 yards downfield is that you take a slow 5 step drop, then look and try and find an open receiver. Go watch Brady or Manning. Half the passes they throw are quick 3 step drops and throwing to a spot where his receiver is supposed to be.

We rarely throw passes over the middle in the 5 to 15 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage between the tackle boxes (the void in the defense left vacant by linebackers natural positioning plus the ones that blitz and safeties covering the deep part of the field on the outside to help out the CB.[/quote:2bmdv3wx]

He isn't making anything UP. The fact of the matter is that it's sometimes a great option to check down to the RB. Mendenhall is very fast and shifty. He often picks up a couple of yards even after contact. If you utilize him as a receiving weapon, you keep the LBs honest and that opens up the middle of the field for Heath and Hines, who make great use of that part of the field anyways. It's a simple, yet very effective tactic. It also keeps our QB from taking a wallop so often. (see the Ben concussion discussion thread)

feltdizz
11-25-2009, 06:20 PM
How can anyone disagree with this assessment? The guy isn't bashing Ben he is
pointing out the obvious...

I always hear about how Ben looks for big plays and we should take the good with the bad... But can't the bad be 20% less then it is right now and we move the chains and Ben stops getting concussions? Remember the hit he took in a meaningless Cleveland game last year?

Ben throws to the RB's but 80% are out of desperation while being killed in the process. All we have to do is watch any Patriot losses in the playoffs to see what a RB in the flat can do on 3rd and 5 or 3rd and 8....

Some Ben homers won't understand no matter how it's said because they see Bens numbers and the 2 SB's and say "Ben is Ben" but looking at the concussions one has to wonder if they are fans of his health...

It's no different then people screaming for FWP to get a hard 3 instead of dancing for -1.

BURGH86STEEL
11-25-2009, 06:29 PM
For whatever reason, there are times when Ben and other in the offense do not diagnose plays quickly enough. There are plays, series, or games where Ben shows flashes of being one of the best passers in the league. He throws with great anticipation, certainty, accuracy, and makes quick decisions. Then there are times where he holds the football to long, does not seem to see the field well, and seems unwilling to trust his abilities as a passer. I think Ben can and will get better.

Mister Pittsburgh
11-25-2009, 10:01 PM
[quote="Steeler Mafia

As i said Big Ben has 35% completion to his TE/RBs this season. Do you want Big Ben to throw 2-3 yards passes to RB on 3rd and 10??? Simply Wow. Steelers are not going to win games with Big Ben not trying to make a play.

I want people to tell me how many deep throws Big Ben tries to throw per game?? He had one bad game that was against Cincy this season where he attempted 4-5 deep passes and could not connect.

Steelers had 44 min TOP against KC and still Steelers D laid a big egg.

Marino may be the greatest QB but he has won nothing.

Make up your mind dude. At first you say that RB are not there to catch the ball, then you put it into a situation of 3rd and 10. :HeadBanger

Nowhere did I suggest that I want Ben to throw a 2 to 3 yard pass to the RB on 3rd and 10. In that situation, you need to get the ball to the sticks. However, in other situations, you get the ball to your backs any way you can. A 2 to 3 yard pass is just as good as a 2 to 3 yard run.

The guy is just making stuff up to try and make the point he was trying to prove relevent. He was wrong, plain and simple. And I have seen numerous times where Ben looks at Mewelde 8 yards downfield on 2nd or 3rd & 6 and Mewelde is wide open with nobody is within 10 yards of him....and he looks him off and tries to find someone downfield only to take a sack. That, is stupid, not heroic or like 'gunslinger-esque'.

The problem with our passing game is there aren't enough timing patterns. Ben plays the game like it is backyard football and he has to visually see the WR wide open before he will throw it. That is why his deep balls are always late. He never just throws it downfield when his WR is in an obvious one on one....well not 'never' but hardly does he do this. The problem with most your pass plays being intended for someone 20 yards downfield is that you take a slow 5 step drop, then look and try and find an open receiver. Go watch Brady or Manning. Half the passes they throw are quick 3 step drops and throwing to a spot where his receiver is supposed to be.

We rarely throw passes over the middle in the 5 to 15 yards downfield from the line of scrimmage between the tackle boxes (the void in the defense left vacant by linebackers natural positioning plus the ones that blitz and safeties covering the deep part of the field on the outside to help out the CB.[/quote:rrthpeco]

He isn't making anything UP. The fact of the matter is that it's sometimes a great option to check down to the RB. Mendenhall is very fast and shifty. He often picks up a couple of yards even after contact. If you utilize him as a receiving weapon, you keep the LBs honest and that opens up the middle of the field for Heath and Hines, who make great use of that part of the field anyways. It's a simple, yet very effective tactic. It also keeps our QB from taking a wallop so often. (see the Ben concussion discussion thread)

Sure he is making stuff up. Who here or in the article mentioned Ben should become Mr. Dumpoff and throw only 2 to 3 yards downfield to his RB? That, is made up to try and prove his point and make it sound like passes to the RB are just little short passes that are worthless when in reality the RB can be 5-8-10 yds downfield and run after the catch.

SteelAbility
11-26-2009, 12:18 AM
He isn't making anything UP. The fact of the matter is that it's sometimes a great option to check down to the RB. Mendenhall is very fast and shifty. He often picks up a couple of yards even after contact. If you utilize him as a receiving weapon, you keep the LBs honest and that opens up the middle of the field for Heath and Hines, who make great use of that part of the field anyways. It's a simple, yet very effective tactic. It also keeps our QB from taking a wallop so often. (see the Ben concussion discussion thread)

Sure he is making stuff up. Who here or in the article mentioned Ben should become Mr. Dumpoff and throw only 2 to 3 yards downfield to his RB? That, is made up to try and prove his point and make it sound like passes to the RB are just little short passes that are worthless when in reality the RB can be 5-8-10 yds downfield and run after the catch.

Very well stated Mr. P. People are making up things like "if we throw ONLY to the backs ..." etc. The article is saying make more use of the RBs in the passing game ...

a. To keep the sacks down and keep Ben healthy
b. To keep the D more honest and make your overall job easier.

mshifko
11-26-2009, 12:49 PM
i've been wanting us to use our backs for the longest time...i think we have a tremendous amount of talent in our backfield and to not utilize it like other teams do is just wasting our guys...

i'd love to see more halfback leaks (mendy's td) or flat routes by our backs..