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fordfixer
12-21-2009, 02:27 AM
Notebook: Tomlin says he'd go onsides again

By: Mike Bires
Beaver County Times

Monday December 21, 2009 12:13 AM
http://www.timesonline.com/sports/sport ... again.html (http://www.timesonline.com/sports/sports_details/article/1501/2009/december/21/notebook-tomlin-says-hed-go-onsides-again.html)

TOMLIN’S TAKE

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin defended his decision to try an ill-fated onsides kick late in the fourth quarter.

“I’ll be very bluntly honest with you,” Tomlin said after the Steelers rallied Sunday for a 37-36 win over the Green Bay Packers. “Based on the way the game was going in the second half, first of all, I thought we had a chance to recover it. But we didn’t get it … Plan A didn’t work.

“We had 30 minutes of evidence that we could drive the ball on them. We also conversely had 30 minutes of evidence to show they could drive the ball on us. That’s why we took the risk we did.”

With 4:03 left to play, the Steelers wet ahead 30-28 on Jeff Reed’s 43-yard field goal. But on the ensuing kickoff, Tomlin ordered an onsides kick.

It failed as cornerback Ike Taylor illegally touched the ball before it traveled 10 yards. So the Packers got the ball on the Steelers’ 39-yard line.

Six plays later, quarterback Aaron Rodgers threw a 24-yard touchdown pass to put the Packers ahead 36-30 with 2:06 left to play.

Fortunately for the Steelers, Ben Roethlisberger engineered an 86-yard game-winning drive that ended with a 19-yard TD pass to rookie wide receiver Mike Wallace.

Several Steeler defensive players defended the call and didn’t see it as a sign that Tomlin had no faith in them.

“Mike just wanted to take a chance there and give our offense the ball again,” defensive end Brett Keisel said. “I don’t blame him for the call.”

“It didn’t matter,” added linebacker James Farrior said. “We’ve been faced with worse situations.”

MILESTONE DAY

Besides Roethlisberger setting a franchise record with 503 passing yards, tight end Heath Miller and wide receiver Hines Ward also reached personal milestones.

Miller is now the Steelers’ single-season receptions leader for tight ends. He set the record in the second quarter when he caught a pass for a 27-yard gain.

Miller finished the game with seven catches for 118 yards. For the season, he’s caught 68 passes for 698 yards and five TDs. The previous high was 63 by Eric Greene in 1993.
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Meanwhile, by catching seven passes for 126 yards, Ward eclipsed the 1,000-yard receiving mark for the sixth time. That’s the most in team history.

Ward’s 100-yard game was his 25th, which ties him with John Stallworth for the team record.

Ward holds most of the franchise’s receiving records, including most career catches (883).

WARREN INJURED

There’s a chance that long snapper Greg Warren may have suffered a season-ending knee injury.

Warren was apparently hurt on the final play of the game — the extra point that gave the Steelers their final and game-winning point.

“Not good,” Tomlin said. “Looks like a torn ACL.”

Warren missed half of the 2008 Super Bowl season with a knee injury.

INACTIVES

The following Steelers were designated game-day inactives: safety Troy Polamalu, cornerback Keenan Lewis, defensive ends Nick Eason and Sunny Harris, guards Chris Kemoeatu and Kraig Urbik, and wide receiver Limas Sweed.

Polamalu missed his fifth straight game and ninth overall as he continues to receiver from his second sprained knee injury.

Kemoeatu sat out with knee and arm injuries. Sweed didn’t play because of an undisclosed illness.

X’s AND O’S

* At one point in the game, the helmets of Steelers guard Ramon Foster and Packers defensive end Cullen Jenkins were stuck together after a collision. Jenkins had to remove his helmet in order for Foster to wiggle the headgear apart.

* Stefan Logan, a 28-year-old rookie who’s been used primarily by the Steelers as a kick return specialist, caught his first pass this season. Logan caught a pass for a 5-yard gain in the third quarter when the Steelers used a four wide receiver set.

* There were 7,598 no-shows at Heinz Field.

Slapstick
12-21-2009, 10:37 AM
I'd go onsides again, too!

JUST-PLAIN-NASTY
12-21-2009, 10:41 AM
Good. It's about time you tell your defense you have no confidence in them. Because that's the message I got...And I hope that is the message they got. Maybe it will light a fire under DL and some players.

ColumbusSteelerFan
12-21-2009, 10:44 AM
* There were 7,598 no-shows at Heinz Field.

You're kidding me, right? THAT many? Wow.

Mister Pittsburgh
12-21-2009, 10:47 AM
* There were 7,598 no-shows at Heinz Field.

:nono

calmkiller
12-21-2009, 11:12 AM
Best call of the game IMO.

NWNewell
12-21-2009, 11:41 AM
Good. It's about time you tell your defense you have no confidence in them. Because that's the message I got...And I hope that is the message they got. Maybe it will light a fire under DL and some players.

I totally understand Tomlin's logic when the idiot announcers were dumbfounded:

He had little confidence that our defense and get them off the field (the as was pretty clear in the second half of the game, and just about every other 4th quarter all year). He's worried about them taking there time and getting within field goal range as the clock winds down under a minute, leaving little or no time for the offense to counter.

So he says, we'll onside kick. Best outcome is we get the ball and our offense has been effective so we should be able to move the able and take time off the clock. Worst case, they score... maybe only a FG, but even if it's a TD... it will be quick and the Steelers get the ball back with over two minutes to counter. Hopefully, they'll only need a FG, but Tomlin had confidence in the offense having a reasonable chance to get a TD I the two minute drill.

We saw the worst case play out... no onside recover, no holding them to just a FG... but Tomlin's confidence in the offense was justified.

I don't really consider Ben to be an elite QB. But when you put more confidence in your offense and QB being able to put together a final drive against the #2 ranked defense than you have in your #6 ranked defense being able to prevent GB from executing a sustained drive for FG or TD, that's saying something.

Having said that, I didn't agree with the call. BUT looking at the way our defense has folded in almost every 4th quarter this year (even games we won, some teams closed the gap in the 4th) and the fact that we have a QB that excels at no-huddle/2-minute drills and already had over 400 yards and 2 TD's in the game, I can't argue with it either.

One of those hero/goat moves. I'll say this, if Belichick makes that call and gets the same outcome, the national media would be saying what a genius Belichick is. So should we give Tomlin the same benefit?

msp26505
12-21-2009, 11:47 AM
I'll say this, if Belichick makes that call and gets the same outcome, the national media would be saying what a genius Belichick is. So should we give Tomlin the same benefit?

Quoted for truth.

Slapstick
12-21-2009, 08:47 PM
How is Ben not elite?

Number of QBs who have won more than 1 SB: 10

Number of QBs who have won the SB younger than Ben: 0

Number of QBs who have won two SBs younger than Ben: 1

Number of QBs who have won more games than Roethlisberger in the first five years of their respective careers: 0

Number of QBs who have won more games than Ben in their rookie year alone: 0

Number of QBs who have thrown for more than 500 yards, 3TDs and no INTs in an NFL game: 3

NWNewell
12-22-2009, 11:18 AM
How is Ben not elite?

Number of QBs who have won more than 1 SB: 10

Number of QBs who have won the SB younger than Ben: 0

Number of QBs who have won two SBs younger than Ben: 1

Number of QBs who have won more games than Roethlisberger in the first five years of their respective careers: 0

Number of QBs who have won more games than Ben in their rookie year alone: 0

Number of QBs who have thrown for more than 500 yards, 3TDs and no INTs in an NFL game: 3

Out of those 6 comments, you just quoted 5 team accolades. You could insert FWP in there for most of those and call him an elite running back.

Don't get me wrong, I think Ben is a great QB and definitely had a major hand in helping the Steelers achieve those accomplishments. I consider him walking walking the line in the top 5 QB's in the league and I think/hope he'll continue to grow, but I reserve "elite" for the top 2-3 QBs.

If he would produce a little more consistency I think he'd get into the elite status in my book. But he's not quite reliable enough to be called elite. I don't really shuffle my opinion of who is elite form week to week, or even year to year. I like to see consistent performance at a high level over a longer period of time.

I know the QB Rating system is not the end all, be all. But lets look at it to help show you what I mean.

On they year, Ben has a 101.3 rating with a standard deviation from game to game of 23.4 (higher deviation means more erratic play) with a 2:1 TD to INT ratio. On his career he's 92.8 with a 12.0 standard deviation (SD).

Peyton is 102.8 with a 20.5 SD on the year with a 2.2:1 TD:INT ratio and 103.4 with 9.2 SD on his career (for everyone's "career" numbers, I'm only looking at the same time frame in which Ben has played.... 2004-2009).

Brady is having an a little bit of an off year (which is expected from a QB coming back from a major injury) and he's 92.1 with a 26.1 SD and has a 2:1 TD:INT ratio this year. But he's 96.7 with 11.6 SD on his career.

Brees: 107.3 with 30.3 SD & 3:1 ratio on the year and 97.5 with 8.2 SD on the year.

Rivers is 104.5 with a 20.3 SD & 2.8:1 ratio on the year and 90.7 with 22.2 SD on his career.

Rogers has a 103.6 with 23.5 SD and a 4:1 ratio on the year and 98.1 with a 6.1 SD on his career (though I'm only counting two years for Rogers).

So you can see that there are a few other QB's that have performed at a higher level this year and throughout their recent careers and/or done it more consistently. Ben is in a close running with most of them, but his TD to INT ratio bump him back down near the bottom of that group. I think Manning, Brees, and Brady (if can can excuse his off year from coming back from the injury) up there as the three more consistent highest performers of recent years. I group Ben on the next tier with some of the other guys I mentioned (but probably near the lead of that second tier).

As I said, he's a great QB and I think he's on his way to a Hall of Fame career. And I'm not saying I'd rather have someone else back there for the Steelers, but he has some strides to make before I would call him an elite QB and put him in the top 3.

It's probably not a popular opinion among the Steeler faithful, but it's just my :2c

SanAntonioSteelerFan
12-22-2009, 08:24 PM
How is Ben not elite?

Number of QBs who have won more than 1 SB: 10

Number of QBs who have won the SB younger than Ben: 0

Number of QBs who have won two SBs younger than Ben: 1

Number of QBs who have won more games than Roethlisberger in the first five years of their respective careers: 0

Number of QBs who have won more games than Ben in their rookie year alone: 0

Number of QBs who have thrown for more than 500 yards, 3TDs and no INTs in an NFL game: 3

Out of those 6 comments, you just quoted 5 team accolades. You could insert FWP in there for most of those and call him an elite running back.

Don't get me wrong, I think Ben is a great QB and definitely had a major hand in helping the Steelers achieve those accomplishments. I consider him walking walking the line in the top 5 QB's in the league and I think/hope he'll continue to grow, but I reserve "elite" for the top 2-3 QBs.

If he would produce a little more consistency I think he'd get into the elite status in my book. But he's not quite reliable enough to be called elite. I don't really shuffle my opinion of who is elite form week to week, or even year to year. I like to see consistent performance at a high level over a longer period of time.

I know the QB Rating system is not the end all, be all. But lets look at it to help show you what I mean.

On they year, Ben has a 101.3 rating with a standard deviation from game to game of 23.4 (higher deviation means more erratic play) with a 2:1 TD to INT ratio. On his career he's 92.8 with a 12.0 standard deviation (SD).

Peyton is 102.8 with a 20.5 SD on the year with a 2.2:1 TD:INT ratio and 103.4 with 9.2 SD on his career (for everyone's "career" numbers, I'm only looking at the same time frame in which Ben has played.... 2004-2009).

Brady is having an a little bit of an off year (which is expected from a QB coming back from a major injury) and he's 92.1 with a 26.1 SD and has a 2:1 TD:INT ratio this year. But he's 96.7 with 11.6 SD on his career.

Brees: 107.3 with 30.3 SD & 3:1 ratio on the year and 97.5 with 8.2 SD on the year.

Rivers is 104.5 with a 20.3 SD & 2.8:1 ratio on the year and 90.7 with 22.2 SD on his career.

Rogers has a 103.6 with 23.5 SD and a 4:1 ratio on the year and 98.1 with a 6.1 SD on his career (though I'm only counting two years for Rogers).

So you can see that there are a few other QB's that have performed at a higher level this year and throughout their recent careers and/or done it more consistently. Ben is in a close running with most of them, but his TD to INT ratio bump him back down near the bottom of that group. I think Manning, Brees, and Brady (if can can excuse his off year from coming back from the injury) up there as the three more consistent highest performers of recent years. I group Ben on the next tier with some of the other guys I mentioned (but probably near the lead of that second tier).

As I said, he's a great QB and I think he's on his way to a Hall of Fame career. And I'm not saying I'd rather have someone else back there for the Steelers, but he has some strides to make before I would call him an elite QB and put him in the top 3.

It's probably not a popular opinion among the Steeler faithful, but it's just my :2c

OK, playing the devil's advocate - with a Superbowl victory vs. loss on the line, behind by four points, your team with the ball and one last 92 yard drive left on the clock - which three of the QB's you named above would you rather have QB'ng your team above Ben?

Just asking!! :D